The Adelaide music scene: to many of you it might be little more than a touring speed bump between Melbourne and Perth but to us it's a way of life. Feast within, on all its dysfunctioning splendour, as we bring you the highly satirical, laughingly fictional and intellectually imbecile tales from our rock & roll wasteland...
9:21PM - Aaaah but silly me, before I can even THINK to enter Rocket Bar tonight I have to lineup outside for another half hour!? Oh maaan how I don't miss THIS! They really are into "cruel and unusual" aren't they? I mean for any OTHER live venue in Adelaide "doors at 9PM" actually means just that. You'll get to walk in at 9PM, load up on beers and the first band will appear at say 9:30PM to 9:45PM. With Rocket Bar however this means arriving at 9PM, only to discover it's not even open yet, only to wait anywhere from half an hour to an hour IN THE RAIN with little or no hint that anything will actually happen. And if you then figure "okaaay, next time I'll simply arrive at 10PM"? suuure that'll work most of the time, until they randomly throw in first band at 9:15PM, when it's usually more like 10:30PM. ARSEHOLES!! And yes granted I CAN appreciate the "infallible logic" here. Having a long lineup outside DOES make your shit look infinitely more "exclusive" than it really is. While keeping you in a constant state of doubt also means you'll get here early every time to guarentee there's always a lineup. But it doesn't make it any less annoying. Worse still? between 9PM and 10PM is also when they like to have their happy hour!? AWWW FUCKING HELL!!
9:37PM - Still eventually I do manage to get past the door.. thank fuck! and for the record the doorstaff here are wonderfully patient and courteous in facilitating this transfer and I rarely have a bad thing to say about them (remember employees only work at a "MacDonalds", they don't necessarily represent its image) only to ascend three flights of stairs to discover THIS? "WHOAAA FUCK, THEY DID WHAT NOW!?". Yup turns out they've been redecorating in my absence (and might I add for the first time in FOUR YEARS!? duuude!). And as much as I was expecting the worst here, because YES I'd heard rumours (or as someone who shall remain nameless described it: "it looks like a fucking strip joint") I dare say I'm impressed! All their overhead air vents have been painted bright white, they've added wood panelling to all the pillars, thrown in some vertical slat detailing around the corners and those wood carved radial fan patterns over the bar are truly something else! It also appears they've replaced most of the furniture with bleachers: most notably behind the mixing desk which they're raised into three steps (which is a nice touch), they've partitioned off the front bar to create a sweet "secluded area" for the second bar and added lots of teeny tiny candles everywhere. Everything has a nice clean "minimal" feel to it, it's all so bright, shiny and new. I mean WOW! I can't help but be a little "excited". Maybe everything I said in the opener is totally uncalled for? maybe.. just maybe they've turned a new leaf!? YAY ROCKET BAR IS BACK!!
9:45PM - But then it hits me.. "hangon, THEY'VE REMOVED ALL THE FUCKING FURNITURE!?" (and we're talking all the couches and sofas too!? DAMNIT!!) not to mention all the landscape paintings and modern art sculptures that used to hang on the walls. Gone too are most of the little booths and hidden alcoves everyone used to love "cosying up in", especially behind the merch desk. They've also removed the last reading lamp they had by the bar (yeaaah you know the one? I was often fond of photographing it as an establishing shot!?) only to replace it with teeny tiny candles!? which I admit makes for a nice "secluded" feel, but it also makes the venue that much darker than it already was; so much so in fact (with the continuing GLARING lack of stage lighting) that the brightest illumination source in this entire venue save for behind the bar, the toilets and the ATM out back is from THE FUCKING CRAZYHORSE SIGN ACROSS THE ROAD!? WHAT THE FUCK!! I mean is anyone else detecting a disturbing "pattern" developing here? It's almost like, over the years, Rocket Bar has methodically and pathologically removed EVERYTHING we could ever identify with on any base human, emotional or tactile connection: from removing all the pot plants, lighting, furniture, fuckit ANY kind of reassuring sensory imput.. only to replace it with arse raping electro and drug abuse!? I mean Rocket Bar is not so much a strip joint now as the Big Brother house crossed with a crack den. And now? yup I'm all the more disturbed to be here than ever before!
HAWKS OF ALBA (****) myspace :: Still all (or some) of these thoughts are soon swept aside (including that niggling suspicion that they simply removed all the furniture to permanently increase their liquor license capacity.. you heartless bastards!) by the welcome appearance of our opening act. Oh maaan and am I SO glad to see these guys too.. well ok maybe not "see" necessarily but at least I can sense a few blurring shapes out there that match their vague description: as it appears impenetrable gloom scaling up to "red embers flickering in a blackout" is still the norm when it comes to Rocket Bar's laughable approximation of "stage lighting" (cue profuse swearing from the band photographer here trying to get ANYTHING in focus) one that if at all possible actually looks WORSE if you shoot it with a flash (cue even MORE profuse swearing) and wait where was I again? oh yeaaah in my very own personal idea of HELL! Still being the irrepressibly cheerful band that they are, it appears Hawks Of Alba have dressed for the "occassion". Their lead singer and bass player Sarah Masters has gone the Darth Vader outfit (not a t-shirt, it actually comes with its own cape!) that she apparently bought at an op shop for a mere $1.50.. SCORE!! Hannah Fairlamb on guitar has gone for an 80's fingerless glove, halloween skeleton, Karate Kid villain motif. While Aidan Moyse on drums has clearly "dropped the ball" by simply rocking as one of The Blues Brothers in suit and tie (HA!). And in their ridiculously upbeat way, they damn near upstage the 20th Century Graduates in being the happiest damn band on the planet to EVER to play the darkest, dingiest stage straight out of my worst nightmares (and yes Larissa that IS meant as a challenge!). I mean no shit, I could be hanging from my ankles in Abu Ghraib right now, having all sorts of unmentionable torture visited upon me and I'd still be beaming a thousand watt grin to this band.. they're THAT ridiculously vitamin C potent! Some of it is obviously thanks to Sarah Masters "chipmunk" charm: between songs she's the one giggling in her teeny tiny voice ushering everyone in closer to the stage "or I'll use the force on you!". But first and foremost its in their infectious sound. Think early 90's indie pop at its best, think The Breeders mixed with I Heart Hiroshima and The Grates. It's also perfectly tweaked in both live mix and composition: with Aidan's apocalyptic drumming (quite possibly the best sounding kit in Adelaide in the way he tunes it to an inch) counterbalanced by Sarah's childlike cadence, snappy bass rhythms and bridged by Hannah's fuzz guitar (like a party in your ears and everyone's invited!). Most of the songs are familiar from previous sets and from regular Triple J airplay, from "Over Before It Ended", "Look What You've Become", "Nothing Inside" (watching Aidan pull that tandem drumming / glockenspiel schtick STILL kills me!) to "Invisible" (an old live favourite from their days as Running With Horses) as well as a new song they've cooked up for this show: "Cut You Out" that sounds altogether like something straight out of a Happy Days episode (and yes I mean that in a good way). I mean short of the fact they're playing in a shitdive like Rocket Bar: where all our hopes and dreams go to die, how could you possibly go wrong!? Hawks Of Alba. They're easily one of the shiniest new discoveries I've made this year, word is they're working on an EP, and if they don't go far? duuude there's just no hope left for the human race!
DEEP SEA ARCADE (***1/2) myspace :: Which brings us to our second act. They're from Sydney: a city that I dont doubt gets its fair share of life and colour, possibly the sound of children laughing.. or in other words everything that Rocket Bar is sorely lacking in to the point its bordering on a gross violation of The Geneva Convention. FUUUCK!! I mean how long do you think it'd be possible to survive this place, like some kinda Morgan Spurlock "Supersize Me" mad science experiment BEFORE it would actually kill you from all the sensory deprivation: 6-7 days tops? And after it DOES invariably claim your life and your mortal soul along with it, would you then be cursed to walk the earth like one of those Ringwraiths out of The Lord Of The Rings as surely it's the dark lord Sauron that commands this place!? (shit maybe he's the one who keeps sending me all those facebook event invites? duuude!). And speaking of "hilarious tangents" did you know that Harry Worth, the guitarist from Radio Spectacular!!! actually shattered his wrist from falling off the stage here late last year BECAUSE HE COULDN'T FUCKING SEE ANYTHING!? True story! I mean I wonder if Deep Sea Arcade were thinking all that shit when they walked on stage tonight.. yeaaah you were wondering when I'd get back to them weren't you? aaah yes Deep Sea Arcade, the band I'm meant to be reviewing! (and in the worst possible venue in Adelaide.. weee!). Yup, apparently they'll be touring in support of Fire! Santa Rosa, Fire! for the next week as they launch their album nationwide, and from first impressions here (short of the fact I can barely see my hand in front of my face) there is a lot to like about them if you dig that whole 60's "summer of love" schtick (and hey who wouldn't!?). In closest comparisons think of them as The Beatles at their most blissfully languid and psychedelic, think Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club, think "Strawberry Fields Forever" especially; but hey everyone else says that about them.. so into the mix throw everything from The Kinks, The Beach Boys, Primal Scream and The Stone Roses and you'd be much closer to the mark. Fronted by Nic Mckenzie: it's the rich nasal quality of his voice that initially pulls you in. Not so much in a piercing Billy Corgan/I want to stab myself repetitively in the eyesockets kind of way (I mean c'mon I can't be the only person who ever thinks that!?), but more so in a Liam Gallagher when he isn't being a total obnoxious twat kind of way.. and I swear it's the awesomest thing too! It's a voice that glides through all their songs like a majestic maple syrup, rounding out all the sharp edges (if there were any to begin with), and maybe even clearing out the sinuses of anyone standing in a fifteen metre radius, it's THAT damn smooth in delivery. The band around him are no less the rich blend in the instrumentation either, everything sorta swims in a languid haze of reverb and delay, weaving a dream world of sub tropical guitars, bouncy castle bass rhythms and hypnotic dub swing percussion; you can't help but lose yourself in a trance to it. The ONLY real problem I could see here is that overall all the songs tend to sound a lot alike, but maybe just that's my lack of familiarity more than anything else. For when they DO kick into their Triple J high rotation "Lonely In Your Arms" (conveniently the next song AFTER I took that live video, GUH DAMNIT!!) everyone's swaying about like a forest with glassy eyed grins, they can't get enough of it and I couldn't help but agree. Deep Sea Arcade. If it were at all possible for a live band to cure the common cold through sound alone? you'd be looking at one right now. And sure they may be no cure for Rocket Bar's ills tonight (duuude nothing less than a fucking exorcist would achieve that) but at least they're a damn good start!
FIRE! SANTA ROSA, FIRE! (***1/2) myspace :: Now before I dive into what hopefully WON'T be a live review that their manager Matt Hayward will be compelled to shit down my neckhole for writing, let's just recap on a few things that I think we can ALL agree on here. Firstly that their debut album "Sea Priest" is good, I mean really good, I mean RIDICULOUSLY good.. maybe even brilliant! Now obviously this isn't me writing an album review here. I mean suuure I've already listened to it twenty times over in the past 2-3 months (and no that's NO exaggeration.. I actually have!) and I do have plenty of glowing praise for it, but you needn't require my pissy affirmation to know that! Critics everywhere are going absolutely nuts for it, they even gave it 3.5/5 in RollingStone Magazine! So just go fucking buy it already, you'll love like you have a mental illness for it. It's just like Juanita Stein's kid sister singing to Interpol, it's fucking tops! (yeaaah just don't quote me on that). Secondly their single launch back in March for "Little Cowboys, Bad Hombres" was nothing short of mindblowingly triumphant, A TRIUMPH!! It was the single most head explodingly awesome "homecoming" show ever, people were weeping with joy over how flabbergastingly beautiful it was, it was THAT FUCKING GOOD!! Thirdly only an idiot ever launches an album at Rocket Bar.. there I said it! I mean I understand WHY they did it, I really do! It was the "sentimental" thing to do. They launched their first and second EPs here and they both went off like a fucking a-bomb! (and I should know, I was there.. they were awesome!). But that was Rocket Bar back in 2006-2007, and when we all heard about this idea in 2010? we laughed and laughed and we thought it was a joke but oooh no, they were being dead serious: "ROCKET BAR ALL THE WAY BABY!!". And admittedly we did go in with the best intentions tonight. We were a roaring crowd to cheer them on, we were an overwhelming feeling in awestruck pride for everything that they'd accomplished to get here and the band simply couldn't stop grinning ear to ear and thanking everyone for making this a night to remember. But maybe there was just too much pressure on them to follow through on stage, maybe that was just asking for trouble, but you could tell something was wrong from the get go; and for once I could hardly blame the lighting for it (as Matt Hayward did a masterful job with what is clearly an increasingly redundant setup). Nope pure and simple Fire! Santa Rosa, Fire! are MUCH TOO BIG for Rocket Bar, they're just too damn loud. Firstly you could hear it with Nathaniel Morse's guitar: it was like a fucking chainsaw. People around me were complaining that it was drowning out next to everything else around him. Most notably Caitlin Duff and Dave Williams on vocals who barely got a word in, only for the mics to feedback in their faces when they tried to "rectify the problem" by asking to crank up the foldback (picture Matt Hills at the mixing desk throwing his hands up in despair and you get where this is heading). And so a lot of their songs ended up a screaming dog's breakfast, an exploding mismatch of aggression and timing, I mean you couldn't even hear Artyom Zinoviev on keys: and for the first time ever you actually wondered WHY (awww I know.. the things you miss when they're gone huh!?). Still it's not a total disaster. The feelgood vibes from the crowd, the enthusiasm of the band to deliver, and the spirit of the occassion went a long way to "salvage it". The quieter songs also shone through all the brighter: "Cold Star", "Dogma Don't" and "April/May" especially warmed us up all nice and toasty, instead of punching us repetitively in the face with a littany of abuse. And when they closed with a cover of Fleetwood Mac's "The Chain"? I swear there wasn't a dry eye left in the house! But overall it was a mixed bag, it was mess.. a glorious mess maybe, but I couldn't help feel that in all their yearning for "nostalgia" tonight that they made a big leap backwards and not forwards in playing here (especially after such a triumphant single launch at Jive). Fire! Santa Rosa, Fire! If ever there's a lesson to be learnt in all this: not only "can you never go home again" (especially not to Rocket Bar) but sometimes THAT'S A GOOD THING. Embrace the future duuudes, because we all know it's gonna be a whole lot brighter than this!
12:57AM - Yeaaah I know what you're all thinking.. that wasn't pretty was it? (and here's hoping a certain someone isn't reaching for a "roll of toilet paper" after he reads it.. yiiikes!) but it's all Rocket Bar's fault I swear! We come skipping hand in hand laughing and singing to this place and we leave as broken twisted shells of our former selves spreading misery and pain wherever we go, even into the very words on this page.. and I'm SO sorry you had to see all that! Fire! Santa Rosa, Fire! are my friends maaan, no more than that, they're like my family! (and I'm clearly the crazy uncle their parents warn them about) but this place is evil, PURE FREAKING EVIL!! Zeta even wrote a song about it once called "Put Your Finger In My Arse". Oestensibly it's a love song (obviously) but it's also explains in the simplest terms the vile power this place has to ruin the lives OF ALL THAT IT TOUCHES! I mean just look at these poor souls at each other's throats, throttling the life out of each other because, quite simply put, they've been trapped in this hell for so damn long (at least three hours now) that they've forgotten all their humanity.. the horror! OH THE HORROR!!
Yup, I couldn't tell you what I felt as moments later Lachlan James Wilson's still twitching body slumped to the floor all twisted and mangled in front of me. I didn't dare respond in word, gesture or even expression that would betray the bowel quaking fear within me, worried that I too wouldn't be next (or worse still, that I might have to use my camera for things never specified in the users manual to defend myself.. namely throwing it at Matt Hayward here and running for dear life). No instead, just like Dian Fossey taught us, I passively mirrored Matt's demented smile and his tentative thumbs up, I didn't make eye contact, I feigned interest in his DJ set (not at all disturbed by anything that he might have been playing) and I dare say I "enjoyed" every minute of it too. Before I finished that beer I was drinking to the last drop and shuffled ever so slowly, cautiously, towards that door.. RUN DAMNIT, RUN FER YA LIVES AND NEVER COME BACK AAAUAUAUGGHHH!!
1:05AM - *Phew* I don't know how but I made it: here gasping and wheezing by the stairwell, just like every other night I've ever spent at Rocket Bar as I take a moment to compose myself, burying all the horrors I've witnessed here tonight into the deepest darkest recesses of my soul (if it weren't for the fact I'd be dredging them all up again to write a blog about it). Oh maaan you wouldn't want to know how many times I've seriously entertained the notion of skipping the stairs entirely in my frantic escape, maybe even throwing one of the couches through the window facing Crazyhorse and leaping arse backwards through the breach (so THAT'S why they got rid of all the furniture!?) even to the point of calculating the exact number of seconds I'd need to count in before going completely limp so I wouldn't twist, sprain or break anything on impact with the ground below. But no.. I am human, I have a soul and YOU HAVE NOT DEFEATED ME THIS NIGHT!!
But alas in my victory dance I hestitated for far too long. Following me down the stairs soon after is one Art Zinoviev keyboardist for Fire! Santa Rosa, Fire! Initially I feared he might have aims to feast upon my brain, such is the corrupting force of this place to twist even the most gentle of souls into a murderous rampaging zombie beast of ill intent.. only to watch even more wide eyed in horror as Tom Krieg from The Battery Kids lunged at him from the shadows. I screamed like a little girl, throwing up my camera to protect me (the flash obviously went off purely by accident to capture this photo) and I ran, oh how I ran and I ran and I tripped and I fell down those stairs: a symphony of "snap crackle and pop" tumbling head over heel for Hindley Street. "FREEDOM! SWEET FREEDOM AT LAST, AAAAHAhAhAhaHAhAHAHA!!". Yeah I know, in hindsight I probably could have saved Art here, he IS afterall the most important and vital creative member of that band (no really, I'm dead serious!), I'm not proud of what I did to get out of there.. but I could only think for my own safety. Rocket Bar never EVER again! Not for your funk, your soul and hiphop, not for your endless Jupiter Lead parties, nor for your Shaolin Afronauts or your Transatlantics.. "wait, but I've heard really good things about that last band? maybe I could..?" NO DAMNIT, NEVER AGAIN!!
1:12AM - Putting aside all the eye gouging horrors of the past few hours (in ways that these words or images can barely express) I crawl palm over fist towards The Ed Castle like its nothing less than an oasis in the desert. Aaaah The Ed Castle, how could I ever have doubted you, sweet SWEET Ed Castle of my dreams! Have I ever told you how much I appreciate you, how much I love you, *sniff* damnit.. after all I've been through this night I'd damn near consummate our relationship right here on the spot *ahem* but now is not the time or the place, especially not after I wrote that joke about peeing on the walls last week. THEY'RE JUST JOKES PEOPLE.. sheeesh, I mean who ever takes what I write in this blog seriously? I mean just YOU try writing this shit every week for five years straight and THEN tell me I'm insane.. fuck damnit do I need a beer!
WOLF & CUB (*****) myspace :: After drowning all my sorrows by the bar: perhaps quite literally, head under one of the beer taps gargling before being shooed away by one of the barstaff (or perhaps not) I stumble blindly into the band room "utterly oblivious" to just what I might uncover (as clearly I didn't plan on this shit tonight, not even in the slightest.. OOOOH FUCK NO!!) only to slam smack bang into an hysterical shitstorm of people all shrieking and howling for Wolf & Cub. Yup it might have been impenetrably dark in here, maybe the darkest I'd ever seen in The Ed Castle, perhaps even darker still than the "harrowing hell hole" I just emerged from on Hindley Street (as I dare not speak its name again) but the mood was entirely different maaan.. it was one of joy, pure unadulterated joy! And I'm not even kidding, it lit up in the room in electromagnetic frequencies the eye couldn't even see, but you could feel it all the same.. YEAAAS!! It was plastered on all the faces around me, it was a beautiful thing to behold! Wide eyed grinning, enraptured by the explosion of rhythmical noise before them: Wolf & Cub were back home again, and they were greeted with open arms! Yup, it's been months since they played live, it's been almost a year by my reckoning since they played Adelaide, and as much as they've experienced their volatile ups and downs on a live stage in the past (and perhaps most infamously for the times I've made fun of them for it in this blog) tonight they were nothing less than a full force of nature, they were mad mischief makers to all our minds being blown like microwave popcorn! I mean I can barely hope to describe what it was like in here, I wasn't even planning on writing it up lest I spoil the moment by having to dissect WHY it was so freaking good. Suffice to say was a mad fucking buzz washing over us in waves, putting us all in a giddy trance that we never EVER wanted to leave! Watch as Joel Byrne on guitar and vocals flailed about like a demon possessed, like a kid on Christmas Day. Witness Patrick Saracino, a "surprise last minute" replacement for Thomas Mayhew on bass, caught up in the groove like it's nothing short of a religious experience (as clearly I didn't already know about this nine months in advance and feigned shock in seeing him tonight). While Joel "Thom Yorke Jnr" Carey and Marvin "The Martian" Hammond whipped everything into a frenzy around them with their tandem drumming. Or simply close your eyes and bug out to it like you're being shot with a taser.. there was truly nothing better! Everything came together beautifully, it was a sweet swirling chaos, a washing machine rinse-out catharsis, I barely took note of what the hell they were playing but in the briefest of sketches their setlist included: One To The Other, Seven Sevens, This Mess, Master, What Are They Running, Hearts and Steal Their Gold. Except for the most part they all just bled into each other (at least in the memory of it) a swirling witches brew with all of us getting high off the fumes. I mean what a show.. WHAT A FUCKING EXPERIENCE!! easily the best I've seen from them in three years! THREE YEARS!! Duuude if you missed out on this: your entire life is forfeit, hang your head in shame (and go see them next time). Wolf & Cub. There are no "second album" jokes here, there is no sophomore slump, just a room united as one.. aaaah what more could you want!?
3:47AM - Many hours hence we passed laughing and drinking in the beergarden, having the absolute time of our lives. I mean say what you will about this place: the endless catwalk parades of nazi fashionistas, the all but invisible band room hidden by a sonic wall of banging club DJs, the all too disturbing frequency in which you'll spot Josh Moore from The Touch doing something entirely stupid that will likely require years of extensive therapy to erase.. but it's really an awesome AWESOME place to be! I mean I don't say it often enough amongst all the snark, but it's true! From all those rollergirl posters and framed photos in the hallway, to the oddball "rock & roll hall of fame" in the band room (that inexplicably features three members of Fire! Santa Rosa, Fire!.. go figure?) to their newsletter/restaurant menu (seriously if ever you have dinner here in the next few months you've GOT to try the Bangers & Mash.. duuude mind explosion!), to the massive beergarden out back with ACTUAL greenery in it, fuck even the screaming pink walls! Even if you disagree with any of it on a base "aesthetic" or "philosophical" level, you've got to agree it has character! Which is what truly defines a venue: not street cred, scenster hype, or doing your utmost to attract all the windowlickers from Electric Circus downstairs with a place they can shoot heroin in, IT'S ALL ABOUT THE CHARACTER DAMNIT!! As for what any of this shit has to do with Will Spartalis here, recently deceased, taken out by his friends for one last "Weekend At Bernies" style adventure? pfft nothing at all.. and perhaps EVERYTHING!! (wait.. what was the question again?).
4:01AM - Moments later, after being questioned by the cops as to WHY I was photographing a dead person (what? why are you looking at me like that!? HE'S DEAD, PEOPLE.. sheesh show some respect!) I surfaced here at Supermild, and by no mean effort either. For not only was it already closing, but they'd already stopped serving at the bar too. And yet here I am, bluffing my way past the bouncer, the door charge, with both a stubbie of pale ale AND a long neck of sparkling within reach? FUCK YEAAAH!! And as much as I'd love to explain how I found myself in possession of both these items? yeaaah let's just say there's a damn good reason WHY I keep coming back to this place completely unrelated to the fact it's an undiagnosed mental illness. For the truth of the matter is I'm actually taking piano lessons here.. at 4AM on a Friday night!? yup, best believe!
4:17AM - Of course the truth of the matter is I don't just come here for the piano lessons, or for the long necks of beer, or for Ruby Chew: who I think we can all agree is a tourist attraction all in her own right (in fact she may even be proof that when the US navy conducted their "Philadelphia Experiment" back in the 1940's they not only managed to render the U.S.S. Eldridge invisible, but they also managed to teleport it more than sixty years into the future), no I come here for the people! Most of them (for all the whimsical anecdotes I could share) never end up in the pages of this blog, as most of them I never end up photographing: save for THESE two all too familiar freaks who almost always without fail turn up in this blog, simply because they're one of the chance few who actually run TOWARDS a camera and not away from it. Yup as much as they may make Supermild look like something straight out of a pretensious fashion magazine, they do make it just that little more classy to drink yourself comatose in.. no shit, they're good value in that way.
4:33AM - Speaking of such here's the infamous Griffy Griff. Ok I admit he's a bad example to the previous statement as he's hardly the classiest cat, or even knowledgeable of basic hygiene practices, but he DOES keep the most hilariously awesome collection of t-shirts. Of course he also runs an orbital weapons platform that hovers geostationary over the EDS building on North Terrace and spins some supremely dope oldskool hiphop tunes.. but really who needs to know all that? Oh and I have no freaking clue WHO the girl is, although I'm pretty sure I have a photo of her being giddily "gangraped" outside that trashy pizza joint opposite Jive over a month ago. Hmmm yup, apparently this is how I meet a LOT of people now. And yes it's as disturbing to ME as it is to you.
4:49AM - Of course at this point I foolishly figured I'd keep drinking with these people, even after Supermild finally threw us out on the street well AFTER closing. And so we went down the road, passing the traffic lights to.. well.. you know where (a place that obviously I dare not speak of by name). Better yet, instead of drinking by the front bar where all the pool tables and video screens are (televising some soccer game whatever-the-fuck most likely) we were sent scurrying to the bar around the OTHER SIDE that serves all their pokie patrons instead. It's here that I'd like to point out one of two things: not the little sign that says "WATER IS FREE. Service is $2.00", but to the smaller sign on the right that reads "TOASTED SANDWICHES Ham & Cheese $2.50". SCOOORE!!
4:57AM - And so here I am at a place I dare not mention: feet propped up on a chair, eating a toasted ham and cheese.. wondering out loud how a diabolical pokie shitdive like this one can provide so much MORE "creature comfort" than Rocket Bar. I mean really? that's even a mystery to me!? c'mon! even a fucking cardboard box, an alleyway dumpster, or Mickey D's on Hindley is preferable to that crack den now! And it's hilarious to think it only takes the smallest thing, like maybe here on a plate to make a difference too!? but believe me sometimes that's all you need!
Yup I've seen my fair share of shitdives play host to shows over the years. I've seen fucked up rooftop raves, alleyway gigs and open air festivals out in the sticks, everything from "hit and run" to "fly by night" in operation, I've even been to The Jolly Miller! But if there's one thing that saves all of them from ruin is that they're rich in character! A pub, club or live venue isn't just four walls and a ringing cash register. It isn't just a soul sucking blackhole to shoot drugs in. It's our home away from home maaan! It's a place of entertainment, amusement and wonder. It's a place where we can find people, drink with them, laugh ourselves stupid, and wake up the next day having absolutely no memory of ever meeting, only that we want to do it all again! And as for Rocket Bar? pfft who knows!? maybe it'll be good again, maybe I'll be back? BUT NOT FOR A LOOONG TIME!!