Book Review - Man Bites Murdoch by Bruce Guthrie


Book Review - Man Bites Murdoch by Bruce Guthrie

It used to be said that the sun never set on the British Empire. The phrase referred to the fact the British had territories on every continent and in every time zone - it was a confirmation of power. 

With a presence in most countries and growing interest in others, we can say the same of News Corp, the media corporation run by Rupert Murdoch.

As one of the world’s largest public companies, News Corp has enormous wealth and resources, but its true power - like that of any empire - is getting others to want what it wants.

In Australia, the major-selling newspaper in every capital city except Perth is published by News LTD (the Australian branch of News Corp). In other countries, rates are comparable.

Even if – as research shows – newspapers do not change what people think, they do tell us what to think about. By presenting select topics, News is able to restrict debate as well as vilify those who break with their narrative.

The Australian journalist Bruce Guthrie found this out when he sued News LTD for breach of contract after his sacking as the Editor-In-Chief of the Melbourne paper The Sun Herald.

Guthrie recounts his toxic battle with News as well as four-decades in print journalism in his 2010 book Man Bites Murdoch – the title refers to the journalism rule: if a dog bites a man it’s not news because it happens so often. But if a man bites a dog, that is news.

Decades in the writing business leave Guthrie well-equipped to tell a captivating story. Concise writing, an unconventional narrative structure and cliff-hanger chapter endings engage the reader while shedding light on the back-room dealings of the Murdoch Empire.

More importantly, though, is Guthrie’s recognition that stories are best told through the people at the centre of them. In keeping with this, we get to the trial after running through Guthrie’s childhood in Broadmeadows, a working class Melbourne suburb, and his career from its beginning as a copy boy in 1972 to work in the U.S, and to senior executive roles in Australia. Watching the media landscape change over two decades raises numerous questions.

But despite the universally popular underdog theme, Man Bites Murdoch is unlikely to appeal to those without a specific interest in Australian politics and the media industry in general.

Moreover, it feels, at times, that Guthrie has a score to settle. He criticises a number of influential people, but never meaningfully reflects on his own failures.

Damaged by the struggle of WWII, the British Empire eventually fell apart. Guthrie’s $665,000 victory in the Victorian Supreme Court will have no such effect on News Corp. It does, however, leave us with an exciting and thought-provoking book.




Tynan King's Book Review – 'Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption' Stephen King

rita hayworth.jpg

It’s not unheard of for a film to be more popular than the book it was based on. 

Take David Fincher’s Fight Club for instance. Of all my friends who enjoyed watching Fight Club, only a handful ever read the novel.

Another book overshadowed by its film adaptation is Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption. The Stephen King novella, published in the 1982 collection Different Seasons, became The Shawshank Redemption, a film starring Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins.

As with Fight Club, The Shawshank Redemption receives much more praise than the original work. And while the film is excellent, the novella deserves recognition too.

 Inspired by a Leo Tolstoy short story, Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption is about Andy Dufresne’s time in Shawshank Prison.

 Andy, who is wrongfully convicted of murdering his wife and her lover, was a successful banker on the outside, and as a calm, intelligent man, he is unsuited to  prison life. 

The story is narrated by Red, the guy who ‘gets things’, and Andy’s best friend in Shawshank. The language is simple and personal, and coupled with the novella’s short length – it’s only 87 pages – it makes Shawshank an easy read. 

When Andy realises the legal avenues are not going to get him out of prison, he asks Red for a rock hammer and a poster of Rita Hayworth. Andy, you see, is taking things into his own hands – quite literally.

 There are none of the supernatural horror elements that Stephen King is famous for, yet the novella is still scary. Prison rape, corrupt officials and the slow, relentless march of time are all thematically present. 

But hope is the principle theme. Even against the bleakness of prison life Andy maintains his dignity, and the other prisoners, particularly Red, are able to draw from this and find a sense of peace. 

After Andy leaves Shawshank, Red laments:“Some birds are not meant to be caged, that’s all. Their feathers are too bright, their songs too sweet and wild.”

 Like Andy, this book deserves to see the light of day.

You can read it here -













Vernas Keep: 'Bones and Arrows' itunes EP Release

Everyone that hears Kyle Lionhart's voice live becomes an instant fan! That's why when we heard he was also in an indie rock band Vernas Keep we became instant fans of this band haha! Vernas Keep's first EP 'Bones and Arrows has haunting melodies, with high reaching electric guitar lead and driving bass lines with a constant groove. It's an EP that you can play from start to finish and get taken away from reality to heights of your imagination. Our favourite track is Rivalry! Once again for us it's the vocals that grab us!  Thanks guys for this beautiful offering of sound. Even before this was bought out the band owned the crowd in their hometown of Byron Bay earlier this year at Falls Festival! Vernas Keep are all set to tour the East Coast of Australia this August & September so be sure to get to one of their live shows as they are a band that will have you wanting more!

itunes Purchas Link Click Here!

Vernas Keep Tour Dates Below!



Mike & Sophie Mcarthy: Live at 'The Old Church On The Hill'

There is something about the blues that just pulls at my emotions. Mike Mcarthy's 'dirt box' style blues guitar makes the body move and the head sway which is healing. With a soulful voice and his beautiful wife Sophie's harmonies this album takes you away to wild places! This album is a live recording which makes it so special. The acoustics of the old church are amazing and the authentic sounds of the audience make you wish you were there when it all went down! The first track 'Nothin' Without Him' pulls you in and holds you from song to song. The perfect road trip album or when sitting by the fire on a cold winters night. Thanks Mike & Sophie for sharing this special gift with us. 

Check out all Mike's links some awesome clips of Mike playing his music below!

FOLLOW and PURCHASE: and is titled 'Live at The Old Church on The Hill'.

Mike McCarthy is a unique songwriter who speaks from the soul. He has the respect of his peers and is one of the hardest working local artists.”




Tynan King: Ernest Hemingway book review

ROAR welcomes our Free lance writer Tynan King for his monthly book review! Tynan is a freelance writer based in the United Arab Emirates. 'For Whom The Bell Tolls' by Ernest Hemingway review and links below. Thanks for your support.

Last year Western Parliaments passed new laws making it illegal for people to participate in hostile activities overseas. The laws, which in Australia carry life sentences, were designed to stop residents travelling to the Middle East and fighting for or against the Islamic State.

In 1936 when Spain sank into civil war, European powers signed the Non-Intervention Agreement, a similar law, designed to confine conflict to Spain. However, thousands of foreign soldiers, including George Orwell and Ernest Hemingway, acted independently of their governments and enlisted. They sought to hand fascism an early defeat.

Hemingway’s For Whom the Bell Tolls is an account grounded in this personal experience. Published in 1940, it traces four days in the life of Robert Jordan, a young American man attached to the Loyalist forces and charged with blowing up a bridge to destroy an attack route in the Franco-controlled mountains.

Hemingway uses Jordan’s relationship with Spain to explore the country’s complexity. Having lived in Spain before the civil war, his world is authentic, vivid and populated with multifaceted Spanish characters:

“In this war there are many foolish things,” Augustin said. “In this war there is an idiocy without bounds.” “Clearly,” said Pilar, “Otherwise we could not be here.”

While in the mountains, Robert Jordan stays with various local anti-fascist guerillas. He meets a young woman named Maria and develops a relationship with her. As the relationship deepens, the dangers linked to his mission begin to weigh on him.

At its core, the novel is an exploration of the horrors of war and the idea that all loss of life is a tragedy. The author’s acknowledgment that both sides commit atrocities is a commitment to objectivity.

The title, “For Whom the Bell Tolls” references John Donne’s famous Meditation XVI. In Spain, on the eve of WWII, the bells tolled for us all.

ROAR would like to thank Tynan for inspiring us to read more!






Tynan King: New ROAR contributor

ROAR would like to welcome Tynan King to the ROAR contributor team! Tynan is a freelance writer based in the United Arab Emirates. He will be reviewing a book for our website each month. We are are very excited to have Tynan on board! This months book is below.

Snow Goose
Beautiful coastlines are places of love and loss. A case in point is Paul Gallico’s 1940 short novella The Snow Goose. 
The story documents disfigured artist and lighthouse keeper Philip Rhayader’s relationship with Fritha, a simple village girl, as they nurse a snow goose back to health.

The action peaks when Rhayader sails his boat to Dunkirk to help evacuate British soldiers (click hyperlink) under attack by German forces. But equally important is Fritha’s transition from childhood to adulthood and her heartbreaking realisation.

The first two thirds of the story captures the palette and melody of the Essex coast: “Above the sea and the wind noises he heard a clear, high note.” Then the narrative shifts to the perspective of rescued soldiers whose vernacular and maritime speech authenticate the setting.

Over it all circles the snow goose, it’s “white body and black- tipped pinions shining in the spring sun” a symbol of the WWII world – beautiful but injured – and of Rhayader himself.

At 54 charm-filled pages it’s worth returning to – say every winter, when the birds make their flight.

 Link for Snow Goose 






Meg Mac: Our new favourite Soul/Pop EP


Our new favourite Pop/Soul artist Meg Mac from Melbourne is making waves in Australia and Internationally. She won a competition at Falls Festival and had some success with live shows. Now she is touring America with D'Angelo!! What the!?? The Meg Mac EP is full of soulful piano, solid beats and powerful vocals.

Our favourite track? Grandma's Hands cover of Bill Withers with epic beats, smooth synth sounds. She nailed it!


Joel Leggett: New EP 'Give it to the Ocean'


Joel Leggett: New EP 'Give it to the Ocean'

There is something special in the Ocean on the Central Coast. It has produced another fantastic singer songwriter Joel Leggett! His first offering to us is the 'Give it to the Ocean' ep which makes you want to go down by the seaside and let everything go and take in the magic of our coastline! At only 18 yrs old Joel already has a talent with mixing beautiful lyrics with finger picking acoustic guitar and he proves it's all you need. You will most likely find Joel playing on the streets around Terrigal, at an intimate house show, markets and more. It's clear he is passionate, creative and very talented.

Listen & Purchase EP: 'Give it to the Ocean' iTunes, Also on Spotify!

Follow: Joel Leggett Facebook, @joelleggett instagram

Our favourite track: Obviously we love all three tracks but 'Hold you' tugs at the heart strings and holds an emotional story with deep bass sounding strumming which resonates through your whole body.

Well done Joel! Thanks for sharing and inspiring!


Daniel March: 'Nina' Single


Daniel March: 'Nina' Single

Our favourite Soul, Rhythm and Blues Australian artist, Daniel March has taken his producing to another level! We present his new single 'Nina' that makes the listener long for a beautiful soul they have never met. With the utmost respect for females Daniel's song writing pulls at your heart strings with the perfect touch of electric guitar licks, fat bass riffs and the smoothest keys poured over it! It makes you wanna sway, bob your head and bite your lip haha like a true soul brother or sister! Take a listen below and read on to purchase 'Nina' whilst helping a great cause for the next 48hrs. We can't wait for the full album.

For the next 48 hours I have made both versions of "NINA" available on BANDCAMP in WAV file For $3 or more, if you wish. All proceeds for the next 48 hours go to @destinyrescue - an Australian based organisation that works to help end sexual exploitation amongst children - Nina in Native American means "Mighty" & In Spanish means "girl" - that's what every young female should be told that they are. Appreciate higher quality music files too whilst your money goes to a good cause - win win -


Vanderaa: New music coming soon


Vanderaa: New music coming soon

'Take me to Church' Cover! Click below!

VanderAa is like a trip to the beach, they are the sun that will shine on your skin, make you smile and radiate an audible golden energy of funk-esque dance rock.

This is no average walk in the park but a full throttle, movin' and shakin', getting down and then back up again affair! VanderAa are a must have on your bucket list if you haven't yet had the pleasure to experience these guys. Brothers Aaron and Levi have an incredible onstage energy, which captivates and leaves you wanting more.

Brothers Aaron and Levi VanderAa, whose surname inspired the band’s moniker, have already accomplished a healthy touring schedule since their inception in 2014 having notched up over 300 shows 10 festivals in 4 states over the last 2 years across four states delivering their high-energy performances, vivacious singing, compelling lyrics, tight rhythm section, and summer loving guitar riffs that are making enough swells to surf on.

Recently winning NT song of the year VanderAa are associated with the new fresh wave of sounds coming from the Australian scene such as - Ball Park Music, Boy & Bear and Sticky Fingers. From the outback to the capital cities this band has already played alongside some of the biggest names in Australian music, recently supporting San Cisco and the Melbourne Ska Orchestra. Previous festivals include Bass In The Grass, Wallaby Creek, Mission Evolve, performing among the likes of The Living End, The Cat Empire, Hilltop Hoods, and Eskimo Joe.


Originally hailing from Darwin and earning their gigging stripes busking and circulating the outback pub circuit, the brothers encapsulate the young, hot, fun culture that is the Northern Territory.  Their sound is equally captivating to their image, from their trademark locks down to their custom designed leather jeans made from skins of crocodile, barramundi, kangaroo, snake and cane toad…. These guys are as Australian as it gets.


Inspired by the roller-coaster lifestyle that is being a touring musician Aaron & Levi have written new EP titled ‘Serendipity’. They’ve said describing the album was best done through colours and feelings. “It’s earthy, red, passionate, with more groove then ever”.


Vanderaa website

@vanderaaband instagram

Vanderaa Facebook Click Here

itunes Sunlovers St. Click Here


Exclusive Single Premiere: Callen Miner 'Smile over me'


Exclusive Single Premiere: Callen Miner 'Smile over me'

Today the ROAR Review is so excited to premiere Callen Miners single 'smile over me'. Drummer and Vocalist Callen Miner has released his first ever single "smile over me" and in doing so, he has stepped into a whole new world. Available for purchase on iTunes this Friday people!!

 Having been a drummer for Sydney funk/reggae outfit Nick Saxon & The Elusive Few, this new venture is a far cry from hitting the skins! Miner lays down the drums and vocals on this track and is accompanied by the talents of established Sydney musician Daniel March and Newcastle producer Gareth Hudson. 


This track was written by Daniel March and both Dan and I have played this song live through Daniels shows and we thought it would be great for me to release it and put a new spin on things to give a vibe that mixed both John Mayer and Roachford inspired sounds. I feel like we have come up with something unique, something that grabs your ears and has that really distinctive sound.


Gareth Hudson is an outstanding producer and musician in his own right. He took me under his wing given that I had never recorded something like this before and really guided me through it all. He has got such a knack for hearing things that a lot of people wouldn't pick up. He has definitely made this song something that I can say I'm proud to listen to.


As drummer I have supported artist like Donovan frankenreiter, something with numbers and James reyne but given the circumstances this being my first single I haven't had any support slots as of yet on the solo side of things but things are in the pipeline and looking positive.


I'm glad you asked ROAR! You can grab the single on iTunes this Friday by following the link which will be released on my Facebook page and on ROAR Review too!



ROAR Music Review: Ivy

Kane, Steve and Ben are a well known 3 piece blues rock band 'IVY' from the Central Coast, NSW, Australia. They have bought out their new self titled ep IVY which brings us joy and makes us jump high enough to head butt the ceiling! Purchase their ep here on iTunes 

What we like about it?! We go crazy for blues rock and Ivy take it to another level with drivy rock riffs with tight drum and bass from Steve and Ben and Kane's insane vocals over the top of tight. Kane also let's loose with his electric guitar solos and we can't help but be reminded of Jimmy Hendrix and a reckless abandonment where the music just takes over and we are in awe! We saw them live a couple of weeks ago and they blew people's minds and pants off!!

How did the ep come to life? To be honest this EP was about 4 years in the making. It was put on, off, on, off until we finally knuckled down and started pre-production in September last year.
Over 4 years we wrote about 30 tracks, then in September we narrowed it down to 10 tracks to record on a pre-prod demo. Then from there chose the final 3 tracks. 
Over the 4 years we played around 100 shows but had nothing to show for it. And by that i mean people would come up to us, loving our set, asking for our music, and we had nothing to give them. We laid down a couple of sweet singles back in 2012 which unexpectedly made it onto triple j. But we never officially released them.

Who is your producer?? We owe the amazing outcome and sound of this EP to our epic producer, Ryan Hazell, who’s worked with the likes of The Black Keys, Neil Young and a bunch more. Between the 3 of us we’ve recorded a fair bit. But have never come across such a dedicated, professional and fun producer. It’s been an awesome year already.

Live music and bands supported so far? We’ve opened the main stage at mountain sounds festival opening for acts such as Alison Wonderland, SAFIA, Tkay Maidza, The Griswolds, DZ Deathrays and more. Recently we have been supporting acts such as The Potbelleez and The Beards and have interest from a couple of sweet record labels off the back of this EP.

How do we get your musical treats!? People can get the EP on iTunes right here iTunes IVY
or can contact us directly for hard copies and we can ship them out.

Do you guys like have like Facebook and like insta?!!?? IVY Facebook jump on @ivyofficial_ to folllow

Cheers legends and thanks for sharing the good vibes and Don't Stop!!!



ROAR Music Review: Parcels

Parcels' unreleased debut EP 'Clockscared is coming today!!!  We can't stop listening to their single 'Herefore' below on repeat!! Find out who they are and how to follow below and what they have been doing to get this ep recorded. We can't wait for it to go live!!

Parcels' unreleased debut EP is coming!!! Today it will be released. We can't stop listening to their single 'Herefore' on repeat!! 
Your Monday is about to get electric and funky! Let these smoothe sounds from Parcels make the start of your week all time!  After over 6 months of relentless production Parcels' debut EP 'Clockscared' is finally complete. Created partially during the final year of members schooling and completed thereafter in bedrooms, lounge rooms and garage studios alike this EP is a first taste of Parcels soulfunk, popelectro sound. 

Who are they? Louie Swain, Patrick Hetherington, Noah Hill, Anatole Serret, and Jules Crommelin have been involved in a host of musical projects in the past. From folk pop outfits Potato Potato and Louie and Patrick to groove metal band Prowler and psych rock band Lifeline. Thus the host of musical influence is diverse within Parcels creating room for a unique and developed sound. 

Sounds like? The EP takes influence mainly from 80's funk, 90's hip-hop and current electronica with elements of classical music and jazz also thrown into the mix. Despite a multitude of synths and programmed elements 'Clockscared' retains a live, real tone with the presence of room recorded guitars, vocals and ambient layers. 

The first single 'Herefore' displays a hip-hop influenced pop sound and this is expanded upon with a unique tone to each individual track.

Playing Live? Parcels plan to perform the EP widely around their beachside hometown Byron Bay (AUS) and then, with a one way ticket to Berlin booked in April, Europe awaits. 

EP teaser clip and all their social media links to follow are below. Get on board this electro, pop, funk train cause it ain't stopping yall!!!!

Check them out on Sound Cloud
Follow their Parcels music Facebook
Follow their Parcels instagram
Follow their You Tube Channel

No doubt you will enjoy! Thanks for sharing and inspiring legends!



ROAR Music Review: Kyle Lionhart

All we can say is "O my goodness!" The latest ep 'Keep in Mind' from Byron Bay based singer songwriter blows our mind! Meeting Kyle over the last couple of years has been a blessing because we never can get enough of his god given vocal talent and emotive songwriting. You know a good ep when you can listen to it hundreds of times and each time feels like you have stumbled across a musical genius.  

Fun Facts: Kyle has a beautiful girl and two of the cutest kids! He loves surfing, is a true gentleman and takes a bit of everyones heart wherever he goes and plays.

Something you may not know: He is also in the epic band 'Vernas Keep' just about to tour east coast Australia!

How can you get it: itunes link ep   

Our favourite track: Slow sips because it's a secret

How to follow his musical adventures: Facebook and @kylelionhart on insta kids!



ROAR Music Review: Nathan Hawes 'Left with the Wolves' EP

Nathan Hawes has just released his new EP 'Left with the Wolves' and you can find it and purchase by clicking here iTunes link  

What we like about it: Beautiful acoustic finger picking coastal vibes that you can relax to by a fire, camping, driving and more! Great lyrics about the coast and relationships and haunting melodies. One definitely to purchase for this Aussie Summer!

Fun Facts: Nathan is 17, still in school, plays gigs every weekend instead of partying, likes surfing, skating and hanging with mates

How to follow: Follow Nathan's instagram @nathan_hawes and Facebook to hear when he is playing some live gigs or secret shows which are not to be missed. On Facebook Nathan gave the thank yous to the following. A big thank you to Adam Toole for recording, Paul Gomersall for mastering, @georginareynolds_ for the art work, @ryanpaull_ for the design @fletcherjack for the photos, @brockragusa for drumming, also to the countless strangers kind enough to support my music. I hope you all enjoy it! feel very free to share it around , let me know what you think by emailing me at