FRINGE DWELLERS IN A FESTIVAL OF THE DARK ARTS
I should've known that this weekend was going to be a weird one.. I could've sensed it in advance.. and for those of us tuned to the dark arts.. we know just where to find the warning signs of impending doom (strangely enough in the most unlikely of places too) turns out that funny little horoscope at the back of RIP IT UP
is just about DEAD-ON nostradamus on all things future.. even more so than your magic eightball.. or sifting thru tea leaves.. examining goose entrails.. or consulting the conehead acolytes who inhabit the Exeter beer gardens (and they're even better than the Oracles of Delphi!)..
yup.. the RIU horoscope told me exactly what to expect.. all my planets were in total disarray.. everything was up in the air.. signs shifting constellations.. Pluto's head was stuck up Uranus, Saturn's rings have buzzsawed thru 1/2 of Mercury and Mars had collided into Venus leaving nothing but a gooey brown chocolatey mess somewhere past the orbit of Neptune.. they told me to expect the unexpected.. expect rain of toads, showers of yak, hail of goldfish and snowings of fluffy white bunnies with pirahna jaws gnashing at my face..
and of course, lucky me.. it was also the beginning of the FRINGE / ADELAIDE ARTS FESTIVAL this weekend.. so all these forces aligned and manifested into one collosal swinging aluminium baseball bat to beat my brain senseless till all I could see wuz stars, little birds and popping firecrackers..
so, load up on the beers, fire up the Jagi machine and crank up the spice weasel.. and join me in the retelling of that which has once again failed to kill me despite all efforts to the contrary..FRIDAY NIGHT
my plans for tonight seemed strange and irrational.. I had the option to see those lunatics SWEEPER play a gig at the Jetty Bar in Glenelg (knowing full well they would've played a brain melting juggernaut of bong rocking ferocity that would've rocked everyone out to skull splitting intensity).. but, since it wuz in Glenelg.. it would've required me to (a) spend 1/2 me night travelling to and back on the TRAMS (and catching the last one into town before midnight to avoid a TAXI), (b) associating with all those teenage "baygan" hoards (them with the spiky mullets and the stripy shirts with the collars up) who frequent the seaside suburb looking to pick fights with anyone and everyone who looked at their skanky girlfriends the wrong way..
so, facing a wallet running close to the E.. I chose the low money-risk option - drinking myself to a blind stupor with a touring band from Sydney "SOUTH FROM HERE" and a select few other lunatics instead.. under the mistaken impression that they were actually playing a gig tonight at the Crown N Anchor.. ooops.. guess they were just here to drink themselves into a blind stupor instead.. oh well.. these things happen..
a few hours in.. and a few jugs of beer later.. the lunatics from TONY FONT SHOW showed up.. at which point we made a hasty retreat the fuck out've there in search of greener drinking pastures..
we were then ambushed by the FRINGE FESTIVAL which had mysteriously opened tonight in the east parklands.. which came as a bit of a surprise.. coz.. wuzn't there meant to be some parade on beforehand thru Rundle St? some kinda warning? freaking hell man.. how did we miss that? (although I did note RIU wuz twice as thick this weekend.. dammit.. THEY KNEW ALL ALONG!! hmmmmm.. something fishy going on here..)
so after fueling up on beers to vomiting point at the CRANKA we made our way into the "GARDEN OF UNEARTHLY DELIGHTS" (aka: the biggest BEER GARDEN in Adelaide) to see wot kinda mischief we could cause..
thankfully, parking space wuzn't a problem this year now that the Adelaide City council had implemented a new space-saving strategy fresh from Tokyo.. gosh, wot will those wacky radioactive ninja's think of next..?
walking amongst all the drunks, stoners, european tourists, standup comedians and pretensious art wankers swirling about.. we spotted THIS dude.. the lead singer from Adelaide's own resident vampire tribute band.. THE BLACK DOVES..
he looked pleased to see us..
here's some trailer trash from Elizabeth that mistook the parklands for a caravan park and set up camp for the night.. I believe one of them was gesturing to me in serious need of dental work.. (or maybe the chicken had the bird flu.. hmmmm)
we then bumped into DAN, who was making his best attempt to look 30 IQ points higher in the hope of scoring some free FRINGE passes (whether he scored anything else is up for debate)
facing the prospect of paying $6.50 for a beer, I instead chose the free entertainment inside the SPIEGELTENT.. wondering firstly wot the FUCK a "SPIEGEL" was and why it needed a tent in the first place.. really I wuz just hoping it wuzn't gonna eat me..
upon walking in, I found this DJ.. and sure.. she looked all cute n sweet n stuff.. but, you should've heard heard the filth that came out've her speakers.. everything from the worst of MICHAEL JACKSON, the GHOST BUSTERS theme, that cheesy FUNKY TOWN song (translated to chinese for reasons I couldn't comprehend) to all sorts of even more embarassing 80's junk that thankfully my inebriated brain chose to forget..
I have this theory that the bohemian "arts scene" looks at least 5 years ahead of wot'ever we accept as cool in the indie music scene.. so, instead of rehashing all those "cool right now" sounds circa 1979 to 1984.. they're running with the bleeding edge of the cringe-worthy from 1985 to 1989.. so, cue the sound of saxaphone solo's.. jackets with huge oversized shoulderpads.. bastardised world-music rhythms and the horrors of designer-geek art-rock.. and that's wot you'd expect.. any minute now they're gonna break out with "DONT WORRY!! BE HAPPY!", or THE FINE YOUNG CANNIBALS "SHE DRIVES ME CRAZY" and here I am without my shotgun..
obviously I wuzn't the only one having a hard time with it..
apparently this year, the Spiegeltent has been designed by the same theatrical mad scientist who runs the decor for the BOHO BAR.. I couldn't for the life of me figure wot the FUCK this device was designed for.. but I'm told if you hit it hard enough a bearded fortune teller will pop out and swap your brain with a 12 year old TOM HANKS.. yeah.. it scared me too..
with all the swirling psychedelia getting the better of me.. we were kicked out of garden as it closed up around 3AM.. with aims to continue the carnage at the CRANKA..
wherein I bumped into these loons.. apparently local internet celebrities who publish a blog
so freakingly insane with thousands of photo's each issue.. it makes mine look like a haiku.. and I'm now living in horror of wot they're gonna do with the silly photo's they took of me (although, considering wot insanity this author does on his site, I have little to worry about)
with the CRANKA about to close.. I get an SMS at 4AM from ANDY with word that some of the freaks from SWEEPER were still pissing on up at SUPERMILD.. so, I grabbed wot wuz left of my brain.. and wandered down..
upon entering.. I wuz greeted by a longneck bottle of COOPERS PALE.. and a hoard of grinning idiots in an even worse condition of intoxication than I was (apparently the SWEEPER gig went well).. suffice to say, any memory (or photographic evidence) of the rest of the night is hazy at best (and horrifically cataract inducing at worse) although I do remember dancing like a retarded loon at some stage.. which you do come to expect at this time of night..
the last thing I remember was the TAXI home at 5AM with goofy looking indian driver blasting exceptionally loud bhangra music from his car stereo.. worked like curry to a pisshead.. just the thing to end a particularly insane night.. dude.. whoever you were with the crazy turban.. YOU ROCK! :)SATURDAY NIGHT
I woke up today feeling like I had been disassembled by a team of backalley organ harvesters.. shipped in seperate boxes by express delivery FeDEX to the far corners of the earth.. crashed on a desert island near FIJI.. left to rot for 5 years whilst some bearded loon has a nervous breakdown with a personified soccer ball.. rediscovered by science.. sent to IKEA.. reassembled using incomprehensible japanese instructions with an allan key.. only to awake today all backwards with mismatched limbs and organs..
yeah.. I dunno wot happened either.. although I could've sworn my watch stopped for a few minutes in my sleep and I woke up today feeling like I had a piece of metal stuck in one of my nasal cavities that messes with my tv transmission.. either that.. or it was just a farm variety disembodied hangover.. (yeah, I'm sticking by my original statement I think)
tonight.. my destination was JIVE, to catch THE BLACK DOVES, SOUTH FROM HERE and TONY FONT SHOW wooping it up like excitable monkeys..THE BLACK DOVES
first up we had THE BLACK DOVES.. serving up their distinctive stabbing barrage of braindamaging gothic fury and shrieking harmonies.. thus making them Adelaide's #1 choice for kids parties, weddings, bar mitzvahs and box socials..
this is what Fred Flinstone would look like if he drove a hearse, worked in a factory for misfit satanic toys and subsisted on nothing but a diet of deformed foetuses and goats blood.. yeah.. damn good bass player tho'..
he told me afterwards, that he remembered NOTHING of wot he did on stage.. and could've very likely been possessed by a type 5 demon.. quite possibly one of those who operates the little pilot light in your gas stove.. hmmm.. I sensed this may develop into the theme for the night..
which brings me to the drummer here, who was equally possessed by dark forces.. so much so.. that after a gig full of psychotic stabbing goth drumming, he suffered a meltdown.. collapsed.. and was last seen being led out to the carpark outside to recuperate (likely to feast on the blood of some unsuspecting mortals..) yeah.. there wuz definitely SOMETHING weird going on here tonight..
damn killer set tho'.. even if it was strange for them to play in the opening spot (they're much more suited to the witching hour just as the drugs really start to kick in) makes me wonder.. isn't it about time they gonna cough up an EP or something sometime soon.. aaaye?SOUTH FROM HERE
up next.. we had the band from Sydney, SOUTH FROM HERE.. south from where exactly I don't know.. perhaps south of the border.. were they mexicans? or, to be more geographically specific, were they penguins from Antarctica? (guess I gotta ask 'em that sometime).. hmmmmm.. regardless of whether they were mexicans, or penguins.. or mexican penguins.. or dyslexic pigeons.. they still cranked out a damn fine set.. channeling all the swagger and gloating brit-pop bravado of OASIS, minus all the Gallagher sibling rivalries and the punchups.. hey.. maybe they could get in a punch up with the REAL OASIS.. yeaaaaah!.. I'd pay good money to see that.. although, I'd be conflicted over who I'd want to win.. coz I kinda hate OASIS.. (but these guys were alright..) plus.. it'd be kinda hard to beat LIAM GALLAGHER, I bet the bastard fights dirty..
as for extra coolness factor.. note here the wearing of sunglasses on stage (seems like these loons came off worse for wear than I did on Friday.. *ow me freaking brain*).. dunno if this was just them stealing a style thing from OASIS.. but it still looked cool..
they also did a mean cover of PINK FLOYD's "MONEY".. which is worth mentioning.. simply coz it's rather difficult to cover PINK FLOYD and NOT sound like an utter flaming nonce.. so nice work there dudes.. :)
(and weird I'd use a phrase like "flaming nonce".. where the FUCK did that come from?)TONY FONT SHOW
up next.. the final act for the night, the big wacky headliners.. TONY FONT SHOW.. who preceded their gig with a premiere screening of their new music video to "CHILL BIT" (which can be found on their self titled EP - available at all good record stores and probably at a few shit ones too).. and a damn impressive vid too.. with surprisingly damn good production values (considering they're still just a smelly 'ol underground act).. even featured some well placed CGI / special FX too.. (although I did find the full frontal wang shot a tad unnecessary) yeah, I could describe the vid to ya.. but I dont wanna spoil the surprise.. gimme a few weeks.. and hopefully I'll be able to steal a download of it and upload it here (MUHAHAHAHAHAHA!).. it's well worth it.. it's funny as fuck..
(hmmmm.. maybe they could upload it to their website? just a suggestion..)
anywaze.. onto the gig itself..
things started out well enough.. all the usual things you come to expect from a funk/rock/metal act.. rocking out.. riffing out.. doing the wacky chicken dance on stage.. hooting like baboons and breaking shit..
but then those same demonic forces that haunted the BLACK DOVES set began working their mojo on the band.. and things started going a little bit pear shaped..
and when the guitarist gives you THIS look.. you know you should be worried..
SATAN? is THAT you?
case in point: here's LEE, the lead singer screaming weird duets with PHIL, the broken-arm drummer..
here he is attacking a random member of the audience..
and soon after this photo, PHIL's head implodes.. and a million spiders burst out've his eye sockets and into the audience (which rather conveniently took all the attention off his tamborine playing).. yeah.. #1 creepiest photo of the night.. is he dabbling in voodoo now?
obviously PHIL was up to something.. coz at about this time, LEE, all crazed and filled with monkey spirits.. chased me down in the crowd.. pinned me to the ground and screamed like a demented baboon inches away from my face..
using my camera to block, I managed to fire off one photo in retaliation..
obviously the "FLASH GRENADE" tactic paid off.. coz here you can see the lead singer knocked out cold on the floor.. (note to LEE: I'll return the $75 I swiped off ya.. but you may need to stop by CRIME CONVERTERS in Torrensville to get ya watch back.. damn cheap piece 'o crap only got me $5 too! bastard!)
and it's really quite fortunate that the same paramedics who treated the BLACK DOVES drummer were still on call.. coz there wuz definitely something weird in the air at this gig.. perhaps it wuz the shrooms found swirling in that Jagermeister machine.. perhaps it was the stifling heat on stage that whipped these lunatics into a baboon frenzy.. perhaps it wuz all PHIL's fault.. either way you'll be happy to know everyone was promptly treated for all head injuries, demon possessions and miscellaneous carnage suffered and there were no long lasting ill effects.. except maybe a few missing kidneys.. but meh? who's gonna know? I gotta pay for me beers somehow!
oh.. and credit to the mixer tonight who made this one helluva diabolical set all round.. I still think the phones are ringing in my brain thanks to you.. niice one!
and in leaving here's a totally useless photo of TONY FONT SHOW being interviewed by C31's AWESAM TV.. (check it out, every MONDAY 10PM and repeated SATURDAY 10PM on C31.. and you might see me flailing like a moron in the crowd.. getting mugged.. and making a goose of meself whilst they did their tv "you are watching" promo spot..)
not quite sure why I took this photo.. but these morons seemed eager doing wot'ever the fuck idiot act they were doing.. so congratulations.. you're in the blog..
after all the ambulances cleared out.. and after all the after-gig beers.. and after all the beers after that.. and the head spinning and the insanity.. and the sacrificing of chickens.. a bunch of us made our way down to the wacky 'ol FRINGE party at the GARDEN OF UNEARTHLY DELIGHTS to continue the insanity started the night before..
as for the grand stupidity we unleashed on the unsuspecting public later in the night? I'll leave that for ANOTHER post..
suffice to say.. nobody was arrested.. noboby was killed.. eaten.. burnt alive.. entered into a reality tv show contest.. locked in a glass coffin or blasted out've a cannon (although there's always NEXT weekend)
but it still makes for a hilarious follow-up story..
Previously on Spoz's Rant: Surfing The Lunatic Fringe By The Tides Of The Full Moon