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Something in the Water

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Something in the Water is a 2008 Australian documentary film written and directed by Aidan O'Bryan. Using live, archival, and interview footage shot in Los Angeles, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney, and Windsor in Berkshire, England, it explores the history and environment behind the development of local and nationally acclaimed musical talent in Western Australia. The film was funded by Perth media production company WBMC, headed by screenwriter/director Aidan O'Bryan and producer Janelle Landers. The film follows the rise to fame of some of Western Australia's most successful musicians. Something in the Water features more than fifty interviews with bands including Little Birdy, The Waifs, The Sleepy Jackson, Eskimo Joe, End of Fashion, Jebediah, Le Hoodoo Gurus, The Panics and Red Jezebel. The film asks whether Perth's talented spawn can be attributed to the city's isolation, the environment or the music scene itself, or whether there is, in fact, something in the water. Something in the Water premiered at the Astor Theatre in Perth and had a limited theatrical run in that city. It later was shown at the FTI Fremantle Film Festival and the 2008 WAMi Festival. An accompanying two-disc compilation of various Western Australian artists became available via MGM Distribution as well as online in January 2009. The film was screened on ABC2 on 13 May 2009. Following this national broadcast, the film was released on DVD on 3 July 2009 via MGM Distribution. The DVD includes additional interview footage with Eskimo Joe, John Butler, The Triffids, Dave Faulkner and Kim Salmon. Some people have noted that the film neglects to mention some of the more notable Perth performers from the 1970s and even 1960s. While Johnny Young makes an appearance, other performers like Glen Ingram & The Hi-Five, Bakery, The Elks, Fatty Lumpkin, Sid Rumpo, Dave Warner, The Dugites and Rip Torn & The Stockings and groundbreaking producer Martin Clark and his Clarion Records are completely ignored (although The Dugites do make an appearance on the film's soundtrack double CD release).
Aidan O'bryan
Documentary, Musical