Nat Kassel

nathanielkassel@gmail.com

Word arranger and photo taker. I've written feature articles for ABC, news.com.au, Monster Children, VICE, Noisey, Slam Skateboarding, Global Hobo, RedBull Adventure, Year13 and others. Contact me for journalism, copywriting and photography work.

Is Living in a Tiny House Something People Actually Enjoy?

Over the last five years, there’s been a lot of talk about tiny houses. You'll know them as those kitschy little cabins that can be knocked up for cheap and moved about on trailers. Stories about tiny houses tend to dwell on their affordability, ecological sustainability, and the minimalist lifestyle that they entail. There’s even some hope that they represent a solution to Australia’s housing affordability crisis. But what’s it like to actually live in one?

Mini Skirt: Hard Yakka and Social Commentary in Byron Bay

This is Mini Skirt, the garage punk band who formed in Byron Bay and popped onto the radar about a year ago with their song ‘Dying Majority’. It’s raw and catchy and lyrically clever; a punk tune that criticises older Aussie blokes who still cling to racist ideas. “I don’t care if they grew up in a different time / They still manage to learn the names of every new player in the NRL / So old dogs can still learn new tricks."

Paul Kelly Talks Regular Jobs, Indigenous Activism and His 24th Studio Album

In his 1985 folk-ballad, ‘From St Kilda to Kings Cross’, Kelly lamented that the journey took “14 hours on a bus”, but today he caught a plane from Tullamarine. He arrives at the EMI building in a dark green suit with one guitar and a small suitcase, greeting his label rep with chivalry and gratitude, and accepting a cup of tea. Kelly is 63-years-old, has just recorded his twenty-fourth album and has been performing music for 44 years.

The Gooch Palms Talk Relentless Touring and Chasing Aliens in Texas

In 2015, Leroy and Kat reckon they played about 130 gigs. Schedules don’t get much heavier than that for touring musicians, especially since they were doing everything DIY. This meant the two-piece were booking and managing their own tours, making and selling their own merch, doing their own PR and doing a shit-load of driving. It was a lifestyle of highways, hotels and roadside diners punctuated by high-energy live shows. Two years later, the workload caught up with Leroy. “I lost my shit in Bordeaux in France, on tour,” Leroy laughs.

Dumb Punts Talk Tuck Shops, Violent Seccies and New Album

Dumb Punts' brand of raw garage rock is as Aussie as VB tins or double-pluggers; it sounds like it was recorded in a sweaty, beer-soaked garage by a group of best mates. Punts’ lyrics are decidedly everyday and yet irreverent, with song titles about goon, getting pissed on and shredding Croydon skatepark. Their best-known song is “Chiller”, a twangy, slower rock and roll number from 2015’s Coupla Couplas that has become a bit of a pub anthem.

A Day in Canggu With Jakarta Artist Alipjon

Alipjon is a 25-year-old painter and illustrator from Jakarta. He’s been pegged as a “garage artist” by Insight, the clothing label who recently shot a collab video with him, but he still makes most of his money by painting with acrylics on canvas. His aesthetic sits somewhere between the rawness of the late Jean-Michel Basquiat and the colour-heavy, fluoro surf and skate logos that were popular in the ‘80s and ‘90s.

Sean Keenan: From Teen Surfer to Murderous Bushranger

Sean Keenan is sitting at his desk in Bondi, wearing a dark blue hoodie and rocking a scrappy, uneven neckbeard. It’s a vastly different look from how we’ve seen him on screen, whether as the long-haired surfie heartthrob in Puberty Blues or the relatively clean-cut, back-from-dead soldier in Glitch. (Or as he’s pictured here by MC lensman Tim Swallow, playing golf in his pyjamas). Keenan has started growing the beard in preparation for his next big role in The True History of The Kelly Gang.

Cleon Peterson: From Deviant Streetscapes to All-Out War

At 24-years-old, Cleon Peterson was living in his car, shooting heroin and facing a possible three-year jail sentence. Now the 45-year-old lives in LA with his wife and kids and has established himself as one of America’s most prolific modern artists, attracting attention both in the realms of international galleries and popular culture. His work is confronting but also pleasing to the eye, merging the brutal violence he sees in the world with an aesthetic that is part Greco-Roman and part graphic novel-esque.

Poking Around in Patrick O'Dell's Garage

He’s best known for making Epicly Later’d, the documentary series about pro skateboarders that’s been running for 11 years now. It’s probably been so successful because it takes such an unflinching look into the reality of skaters’ lives without skimming over the dark shit. Instead of the easy questions and uplifting music you see in a lot of branded content these days, O’Dell has generally taken a more upfront stance to his storytelling.

Artist Bill Tonnesen is No Stranger to Controversy

Tonnesen is a landscape architect by trade but is perhaps better known for his sculptures, which are slightly haunting and macabre. To give you an idea, they’re usually life-sized human figures that might be clutching a weapon, a musical instrument or partially covering themselves with a blanket. But perhaps the most striking thing about them is their placement: you’ll find one perched up on someone’s roof, adorning a mailbox, or ‘hiding’ in the bushes of someone’s yard.

Todd Francis Makes Art For Antihero Skateboards

From pigeons watching porn to dogs attacking cops, there’s definitely an animals-vs-humans motif that can be seen throughout Todd’s art. The Venice Beach native is best known for having illustrated the eagle logo that has become synonymous with Antihero Skateboards. Todd’s work is by no means safe, rather it’s provocative and controversial—not in a particularly avant-garde or pretentious way, but in a way that forces you to interpret the meaning of it.
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