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...
FRIENDS + THE CRYING GAME + HARMONY ALBUM LAUNCH @ THE METRO / Sunday June 13th 2010
For as long as I can remember (ie: give or take the vast shopping list of mental illness you likely think I'm sporting right now to stunt it) Sunday has always been a universal day of rest. A time to reflect, a time to rinse out our "peanut brittle" liver and contemplate just what the fuck it is we DID last night (or who we did it too repeatedly while a crowd of onlookers cheered us on); what kind of baboon enclosure we've just woken up in.. if not actual and oestensibly part of the Adelaide Zoo, or whether we somehow got "biblical" with one; or why it smells like an entire deep sea ecosystem has up and died here and apparently invited along the reanimated carcasses of Chemical Ali and Saddam Hussein to conduct extensive weapons testing.. only to discover that "smell" is coming from US; or why we happen to be wearing pants on our head as a turban (or even better when we realise we spent a good three hours last night on a dance floor like this.. AND it was at Shotz or The Casino, and someone's just uploaded the highlights to youtube, and now it's being featured on their home page), or why we need a passport and a UN Security Council task force in effort to get us home. Yeaaah you know it's totally a universal thing! we've all been there riiight? GOOOOD TIMES!! Yup I forget who invented it exactly, or the "how and why" although I don't doubt many of us would likely cite religious reasons (pfft) but aren't we so glad that they DID!? SUNDAYS FUCKING RULE MAAAN!! Obviously many of us have our own unique way of "observing it" limited only by the maximum distance required to reach our nearest KFC, chinese grocery, bottle shop, pharmacy or abortion clinic. And as for me? mine's a quiet, reflective, albeit highly productive day spent in the office. Weird but true! It's usually the only day where I get to edit up most of my photos, videos and get all my shit together for another week's worth of installments for Spoz's Rant.. and if it's at all possible, the one day where I also get to sneak in a week's worth of illegal downloading (EZTV I think I love you!), which is exactly what I was planning on doing again TONIGHT if it weren't for the fact that The Metro was hosting a fuck off epic album launch party with a five band bill, and now I have no other choice but to crawl out of my coffin with a camera to cover it.. YOOOU BASTARDS!!
And as luck would have it THAT'S THE LEAST OF IT. For not only are we witness to a gargantuan five band bill headlined by Friends: launching their long anticipated debut album (and yes I DO realise they've only been around for nine months now, but if ever you've seen them play live you'd be very much inclined to agree) but also "co-headlined" by an encore performance of The Crying Game: arguably the best (and worst) "bull in a china shop" supergroup cover band/demolition squad you've ever seen tear a venue a new arsehole in the Adelaide scene (so much so you'll pray to hell there isn't another one like them or we'd all be listing on the organ transplant list by now); but it's also happening on the tail end of the SAME Queen's Birthday long weekend that's given us The Battery Kids album launch, Matt Hill's 40th Birthday Party featuring both a reunion show AND a debut, the opening week of The Adelaide Cabaret Festival (and did I mention I'm missing out on Nouvelle Vague AGAIN for this shit!? FUUUCK!!) and that's just the tip of the iceberg. But to REALLY nail home just how apocalyptically fucked this shit is? it's also happening on the same night that The World Cup soccer is presenting Australia's first round stoush with Germany, The Metro will be showing it on dozens of TVs and projection screens live at 4AM, they're offering free pizza.. YES FREE PIZZA to hoards of screaming fans who'll be here to drink themselves blind till well after dawn!? Or in other words? picture this night as a pen and paper sketch of a two dimensional plane (and a third for gravity) as immortalised by the theories of Albert Einstein, picture an infinitesimally small red dot representing ME, now picture an entire inkwell exploding to the right representing the massive black hole bending space and time around it like a pretzel that's inextricably drawing me into its event horizon and THAT'S gonna be my hangover come Monday; better yet? picture me holding up a teeny tiny umbrella to protect myself like it's a Looney Tunes cartoon.. FUUUCK!!
But hey, it's hardly the first time I've ever faced against shit of this retarding magnitude is it? HELL NO!! This is just like every other week for me! I eat weeks like this for breakfast and then I crap out nothing but gold! gold baaaby.. GOLD!! WAAAUHAHAhAhAhAHaHAHA!! (ie: simply read five or more episodes of this blog in one sitting and see if YOU don't need a good lie down and a psychiatrist). And so before I totally "check out" all foetal, bug eyed and screaming hysterically in a corner to this shit? let's give you quick tour of all the things YOU might have missed out on by staying home tonight, watching episodes of MasterChef, CSI, Underbelly or whatever the fuck, and wondering out loud if Adelaide still has a music scene (because apparently you get all of YOUR entertainment news from "Adelaide Confidental"). Like take this wacky "racetrack" scoreboard for example: posted outside the band room here and listing all the show times tonight as if they're potential betting odds on whether any of these bands will actually start on time; of course what you DON'T see on the opposite wall is another scoreboard listing all the odds placed on how many beers Matt Banham will drink before he plays with The Crying Game.. but still, kinda cool huh?
Or what about their ecclectic lineup of DJs? (or perhaps just this guy) stuffed in the back of the room all night, spinning the maddest, skull fuckingly dopest, selection of.. um.. errr.. yeaaah ok, clearly I wasn't paying attention (I mean pfft.. what do I give a fuck about DJs!?) but I'm still pretty damn sure there wasn't a shitty indie disco electro (or Baywatch theme) abomination hidden among the lot of them, so that's still gotta count for something riiight? And as for why I stopped to take a photo of it? HA HA HA duuude why the fuck else!? I mean just look at the nerdtastic pixelated head explosion he's wearing as a jumper.. is that just the craziest damn shit or WHAT!?
And then there's THIS. And no I'm not referring to the bass guitar or tambourine (pfft.. what are you nuts!?) but more so to the rasberry cordial container standing next to it. And as for why this is of any significance? well apparently this is all that the bass player from one of our bands tonight was choosing to drink instead of beer (no really, try and guess which one!). I mean sure I get it, one single serving DOES give you 63% of your recommended daily intake of Vitamin C and that sure as shit beats a handful of Skittles (it's even better if you inject it into your eyelids!) but it's also a red flag indicator if ever we need one (short of anything that'd have ME commited) for a potential serial killer in our midst. Damn and to think I haven't even updated my will this week?
And how could we possibly forget Brett "Bloodnut" Davis and Alex Fimeri here? aye? aaaye!? I mean sure I only took this photo in the first place because I just so happened to be in the general vicinity and Brett requested it, and I only PUBLISHED it because I've always found my blog doesn't feature nearly enough dudes with orange moustaches.. but hey, wouldn't YOU want to be at a gig tonight with peeps as wildly disproportionate in height as these two freaks!? OOOH SHIT YEAH!!
TAUGHT BY ANIMALS (***) myspace :: Yup, which in a completely non sequitur way brings us to our first band (but only after I've had two or three dark ales at the bar to silence all the hysterical screaming in my head). And as it turns out it's an auspicious occassion for all involved too, and not just because they're opening for an album launch, or that this is the first gig they've played with their new drummer, but also because it's the first gig they've played IN OVER EIGHTEEN MONTHS. Yup this is Taught By Animals, and if the name sounds at all familiar it's because a few years back you couldn't get away from them even if you tried. Maaan they used to be fucking everywhere, every week, every venue in town, playing to the opening of a fridge door or an envelope if you'd let them; in fact you could say they were the proverbial "Mona Lisa Overdrive" serial offender of the Adelaide scene BEFORE there even WAS a Mona Lisa Overdrive to drive us all insane with this shit.. FUUUCK!! To their infinite credit however, they were nothing short of fuck off a-grade face meltingly awesome, duuude they were the best! They released a genius self titled EP, won scores of accolades from street press and bloggers alike (or perhaps it was just me who couldn't shut up about them) I mean hell they even featured as a shit hot "band to watch" in the Sunday Mail back when they actually HAD a teeny tiny quality feature on the local scene each week (thank you Nazz!) and not just an asinine gossip column on who's sleeping with who with all those lamearse AFL footy player, half rate fashionista and D-list celebrity "vanity projects" you see swanning about of late (pfft). Yup, in short they had all the indicators of being something truly special. But then somewhere in late 2007 it all went awry. First they lost uber producer/bass player Matt Hills (and not entirely on the best terms either) only to result in an awkward follow up gig at The Ed Castle in February 2008 with replacement bassist Gerard Liddle (that I swear felt like walking into an messy breakup as Matt was mixing on the night). Then they lost drummer Neil Clark (later to be poached by Cheer Advisory Council and Humble Bee) only for their one remaining "original" member Jon Walsh to completely lose his batshit mind and all but disappear from the Adelaide scene.. or at least that's what we were all lead to believe. For as it turns out Taught By Animals were far from dead. For the past two years Jon and Gerard had been working on their debut album, and now it's almost finished. They've finally found a replacement drummer: I've got no fucking idea who he is, but in playing style alone he's killing it a-grade out there like a disciple from the school of Ryan Manolakis (ie: see Like Leaves, BrotherSister, Mr Wednesday for countless exploding superlatives on why that's a GOOD THING) and now at long last they're back with avengence? Yup, and for the most part it works. In style they're admittedly a lot more loose, disjointed and rubbery than before (think an aphasic mix between The Pixies, The Flaming Lips, Primus and The Beatles "White Album" and you wouldn't be far off) and there's also a few Mad Professor dub influences creeping in too. Both the hirsuit Jon (Cornelius from Planet Of The Apes crossed with Cliff Richard) and space cadet Gerard (like Les Claypool fucking a lampshade) fill the air in a frequently swapping guitar/bass fuzz pastiche, as Gerard simultaneously triggers a dizzying array of synths and samples on a laptop, while their drummer provides a loose semblance of overall structure in his spidering percussion. And as much as it DOES completely do your head in trying to watch it all (not least of which thanks to Gerard covering all points of the universe like he's a spastic oversized bumblebee) as long as you don't focus too hard on it, close your eyes and simply let your mind drift free? it's quite a pleasant experience, kinda like being whacked out on three to four drags of a monster spliff; throw some snacks in and it's pretty much a done deal! Yup they've got a tonne of new songs, new ideas, Jon's singing a whole bunch of new shit that's nowhere near English but I'm digging where it's all going (possibly beyond the orbit of Pluto). Taught By Animals. Could they stage a comeback after all these years with all this insanity? who knows!? but in the very least they're off to a good start!
DUD PILLS (***1/2) myspace :: Equally disorienting comes the arrival of our second act. And by "equally disorienting" I mean I could've sworn I've seen all of these shit weasels (or at least some of them) in about fifty billion OTHER interchangeable "side projects" frequenting Format Space and The Metro any given week over the past three years. As much as I can gather they're all part of Adelaide's ever burgeoning lo-fi/DIY/garage scene, a scene that keeps at best a limited (but wildly fictional) web presence on myspace and facebook under a dizzying array of shitcrazy musical pseudonyms, and yes they're so much cooler than you or I will ever be.. FACT. Still you're probably at least passingly familiar with a few of their figureheads, namely: Matt Banham from No Through Road; Kynan Lawlor from Hit The Jackpot; Corinna Duszynski from Megafauna; Stacey Wilson from All Made Of Rubies; Nigel Koop from Home For The Def; Ellen Carey, Nick Walton and Stephanie Crase from Birth Glow; and Stan Mahoney who actually ISN'T in any band per se (at least not that I'm aware of) but fulfills a no less vital role as their spokesman, promoter, zine publisher and occassional venue operator.. *phew*. Of course that's just barely scratching the surface here: there's a veritable hornet's nest of them floating about back alleys and op shops of this city under cover of darkness, easily identifiable by their cardigan clad, beardly bedraggled, barefooted attire and surely demeanor; I'm pretty sure most of them went to the same highschool together; they're largely distrusting of outsiders to the point that some of them are openly hostile, I often have my suspicions that they're a front for a domestic terrorist cell with aims to blow up Rocket Bar (and if they were? shit duuude I'd be the first one to sign up!) and yet all that being said? they're also the most artistically integral, avante garde alternative to the Adelaide scene you will ever know.. or at least they would be if ever you could get anywhere near to understanding them. Which in a rather longwinded way begins to describe what the fuck is going on with THIS band. Yup this is Dud Pills. Featuring current, former or recently deceased members of Skeletons, The Weevils and Bitch Prefect (amongst many others) they're as lo-fi and utterly (artistically) alienating as they come. Faces to the floor, backs to the audience (to the point that they barely acknowledge our existence) swaying as if in a trance they belt out song after song of the most indie atonal, clanging, jarring, dissonant trash you'll ever hear outside of a community radio station half tuned to static, 2AM on a Tuesday; and for the most part, short of the infectious rhythm section (that borrows its cues from both 60's pop and garage), you'd be hard pressed to call it "music". Obviously there's very few comparisons you could make to anything else you might've heard but at a stretch think of it as an incoherent mix between the oldskool punk extremes of Sonic Youth, Eddy Current Suppression Ring, I Heart Hiroshima, Black Lips and Wavves; in as much as they sound nothing like them. Everything about them is an absolute shambles. Their instruments are the cheapest, nastiest, barely functional pieces of shit that money can buy (or more accurately shoplift) from a neighbourhood Crime Converters. They seemingly make no effort to tune anything, in as much as they may actually go out of their way to tune EVERYTHING wildly out of whack so it all clashes hideously in your head space. Songs frequently go out of time, whole sections go missing without a bridge or chorus, they start laughing in spite of themselves only to make things worse, and on at least one occassion it actually takes them four aborted attempts before they can even get a song off the ground (and another where it simply stops dead without warning). And yet as hideous as it all sounds: by it's clear and obvious intent for shit grinning mischief and malice, by the very fact it just gets worse and WORSE the more you hear of it (and how!), and the fact that THIS is what they're actually aiming for? you can't help but laugh yourself stupid to the sublime genius of it all. It's so bad it's brilliant, it's everything you ever understood to be good and decent and worthy of praise totally turned on its head and given an atomic wedgie, it's the ultimate "FUCK YOU" to the music industry and all of us are cheering them on? Yup that's Dud Pills. They may be a total fucking disaster, but in the best way possible!
HARMONY (***1/2) And now for a slight change of pace, here's a band I know next to nothing about (and thus won't be weirdly compelled to write a review for them as ridiculously overblown as the first two.. THANK FUUUCK!!) short of the fact that it's their debut tonight, they're from Melbourne and they feature Tom Lyngcoln on lead vocals and guitar (from The Nation Blue), Jon Chapple on bass (from McLusky and Shooting At Unarmed Men) and some "anonymous girl" on drums (from who the fuck knows where); which likely means about as much to YOU as it does to me unless of course you're a massive fan of The Nation Blue, McLusky or Shooting At Unarmed Men. Awesome huh!? TOTALLY!! Still as much as it is utterly mystifying to me WHY they would choose to have their debut gig here of all places (especially if I'm cooking up their first review.. egads!) instead of say Melbourne.. as far as first impressions go? yeaaah I don't think they'll have any trouble gathering a faithful following in next to no time, especially with the sort of people who's musical tastes favour the terminally bleak and bitter (and hey, isn't that the best kind of shit to wallow in sometimes?). Yup in essence think of Harmony as a gallows blues band midway between the skull fucking brutality and intensity of say Bronze Chariot (and I wish I had a better known example but that's as close as I can figure it) mixed in with elements of The Drones, The Mark Of Cain, Nirvana Unplugged (especially that cover they did of Leadbelly) and at a stretch maybe Sonic Youth (but mostly in those songs when Thurston Moore does the majority of the vocals). It's a predominantly 90's sound, utterly disenchanted, alienated, rife with an undying angst that never abates and never relents and NEVER FORGIVES. They're songs that vent their pain slowly like pushing a boulder up a steep hill, drawing out each note and weighing it for added effect, punctuating and stabbing each rhythm until there's nothing left to give. Tom's vocals wheeze, rasp, scream and groan like a Joe Cocker beaten with lead pipes, like he's giving birth to a kidney stone the size of an extinction level asteroid (one that's possibly intended for an ex girlfriend or someone that ran over his dog AND stole his ex girlfriend) but at the same time there's a stately demeanor to it, a catharsis found in all this impossible despair like he's got all the time in the world to feel this painfully black about it. Jon works the bass so that every note's like a head beating a brick wall going "why damnit? WHY!?". While the drummer keeps plodding along in a slow canter like she's riding an emaciated horse forever in search of water. FUUUCK!! Still it's not ALL grim tidings. In between tunes, they do provide a bit of light commentary. At one point Tom turns to Jon and asks him: "so.. have you cooked up any insults for the audience yet?". Only for Jon to reply "no not yet, they're a terribly good looking bunch even if I dare say a few too many of them have long hair" only to correct himself when he sees me "not like I have anything against YOU yet", only for the crowd to shoot back "yeah.. YOU WILL!!". And then a few songs later when Jon follows it up with a joke: "what do you call a Russian with 3 testicles? 'Whodya Nickabollockoff". HEH!! Still as trivial as these silly asides might have been, but they did provide just the right amount of comic relief to balance what would've otherwise been a brilliant but harrowing study into existential woe; or in other words we'll take what we can get. Harmony. They might be the sound of one man contemplating whether to jump off a bridge, reconsidering it, only to convince us that we should jump along with them.. but when the reason's THIS compelling, can you blame a man for trying?
FRIENDS (*****) myspace :: And now at long last the moment we've all been waiting for (and no doubt spent all night drinking ourselves into a stupifying frenzy for) as our headlining act make their long awaited appearance on stage. Here to launch an album that we've long been itching to get our hands on, pretty much ever since they announced it maybe a month ago, but likely well before that too. For this is a band of infamy, an infamy that's been forged in an exceptionally short span of time for providing a simple service to a live audience again and again: carnage. Simple, unadulterated, throat throttling "KILL EVERY FUCKING THING THAT MOVES" carnage; carnage that's been in relatively short supply in the Adelaide scene of late (or at least since Tony Font Show broke up back in 2008). I mean suuure I know what you're all thinking.. and yes I DO realise there's always been more than enough emo, punk, hardcore and metal bands to cater to just about every self destructive desire you care to have, if you know where to look (dare we mention Robotosaurus or The Thieves!? FUUUCK!!) but Friends are different. Formed between former members of Anthony Of The Future, Billy Bishop Goes To War and Tyger Tyger and steeped in a lo-fi "fuck 'em all" aesthetic they're the ultimate crossover "indie" act, they're bringing the carnage back to the hipsters maaan! Yeah you know the ones: all those "doe eyed deer" at The Ed Castle, The Exeter, Rocket Bar, Jive or The Metro, swanning about all fashionably cutting edge, DJ obsessed and utterly disaffected. They haven't seen the likes of this shit in YEAAARS!! They've forgotten what carnage truly is! especially since they discovered twee folk, post rock and indie disco, and got all obsessed over American Apparel and Vampire Weekend. But now Friends are bringing it right back baaaby, and not a moment too soon! Yup you might remember them back in January when they damn near tore The Ed Castle beer garden a new "sphincter" and made baloon animals out of it for the Touch Party, you might remember when they played Format Space in support of The Crying Game, or at Jive for Fire! Santa Rosa, Fire!, or at The Exeter countless times over. Their immediate appeal is easy to understand: I mean it speaks to that reptilian brain "fight or flight" kill switch within us all, it's like all the best bits of Nirvana, The Dead Kennedys and Grinderman thrown into a bareknuckle boxing match (you could even consider them the Adelaide equivalent of Eddy Current Suppression Ring minus all the meth amphetamines.. HA!!). Doing all of this justice in a live review however? yeaaah you just have to be there. For here tonight, in celebration of their album launch? they're holding nothing back.. OOOOH FUCK NO!! Their first song "Sorry" lets loose like a declaration of war, all slackjawed grooves, scribbling guitars and gutteral catcalls. By the fourth song "Satellite" the crowd starts retaliating in kind: swinging fists, arms, legs, an exploding tornado of meat and gristle devouring everything and everyone in sight. Now its kill or be killed, instruments and amps scattering everywhere, a shower of broken glass. Josh Phillips on guitar's picking fights with everyone in the crowd, he's only joking to begin with until they started answering back, then watch him red faced and flailing as he screams at all the worst offenders "weapon" raised, only to slam it into the ground when the plug gets pulled and it stops responding; Ben Quici on lead vocals continues to whip everyone into a frenzy, alternating between insolent and incoherent screaming, only to completely conk out the microphone to a morse code crackle, so much so you can hear him droning "I s.und like a St.r Wars r.bot from Re.urn of .he J.di" over and over as the house mixer attempts to bring it back from the brink; while Liam Kenny and James Mannix on bass and drums, caught between bewildered and bemused, do their utmost in thrashing the rhythm section at full tilt; and it only gets more fuck off insane from there on in. In recounting it my memory's little more than a blur: save for the distinct sensation of being stuck in a rock tumbler, the lurchingly drunk sounds of "99 Problems" then "Sandpit", and then a light ringing in my ears that signified cessation of hostilities. Nobody knew who won this war, or who ceded territory to who, all we DO know is that we survived. They were Friends, they played a show, and it made monkeys of us all!
Now usually in "life and death" situations like these I'd love nothing better than to point the camera into the crowd and capture all the hilarious hijinx exploding around me, I mean shit duuude if I'm gonna get knocked out stone cold into next Tuesday I might as well have some backup "black box recordings" to go along with it right!? it's what I did with The Battery Kids launch on Friday night when shit was flying every-which-where and it was awesome! ditto with The Shiny Brights on Saturday night at The Ed Castle when Wolfgang divebombed into the crowd, but here at The Metro for Friends!? yeaaah let's just say that only a madman would dare touch this shit without getting their camera punched clean through their skull and into a wall. It just got too hairy out there, too extreme, peeps were flying head first into the foldback speakers, HEAD FIRST!! not just once or twice but ALL THE FUCKING TIME!! Still as much as I did miss most the action (and it's anyone's guess HOW I got half of these photos of the band without getting my teeth knocked out) just as I was fleeing the main arena of battle for the "relative safety" of stage right where Ben microphone stand was positioned? I did manage to hastily fire off this ONE (somewhat unfocused) shot of what was happening behind me. Bear in mind: this was only 20 minutes into their set too.
And this is what I got after their set: when Josh and Kenny leaned back on Ben's amplifier satisfied in a "job well done", only to slip and fall arse backwards behind it shattering a few dozen pint glasses? yup not bad for a Sunday night aye!? Now imagine if this happened every Sunday night? or even just every Friday or Saturday night? wouldn't it be awesome? WOULDN'T IT BE INSANE!? I mean sure I'd be dead in a month, but just think of the possibilities? BEST SUNDAY NIGHT EVER!!
THE CRYING GAME (*****) myspace :: But of course this night isn't over yet.. OOOOH FUCK NO, not when we still have one more band left to go! SQUEEEEEE!! Now before I bash my head repetitively into this wall in the vain belief that I'll somehow "will" this band out of existence.. so then I can go home already, let me just point out a few things here. Firstly the organisers tonight are total sadists for even THINKING that putting this shit on after a fucking album launch was EVER a good idea. I mean who even does that? ARE YOU NUTS!? ARE YOU INSANE!? ARE YOU EVEN HUMAN YOU SOULESS FUCKS!? (potential conspiracy theory forming? Matt Banham, band booker for The Metro, and lead singer of this band, is actually a shape shifting reptilian; in the very least it'll begin to explain his drinking). Secondly this isn't even a real band IT'S A COVER BAND: and clearly that's grounds for immediate disqualification and revocation of any rating and/or potential inductment into the Spoz's Rant "hall of fame" on the grounds that me giving them a "five star rating" tonight (one which admittedly they very much deserved) sets a dangerous precedent for me to subsequently review all manner of other fucked up cover bands, which will invariably lead me to write reviews on The Zep Boys or worse still Chunky Custard, and then I have no other option but to shoot myself.. JUST SAY NO ADELAIDE!! Thirdly (wait, scuse me while I just try something here *BANG BANG BANG* ..nope still here). Thirdly they're not even good at BEING a cover band! in fact they may very well be one of the worst cover bands in Adelaide.. THE WORST!! and waaait did you just say that they're "the worst"? and that they butcher every single song they play to within an inch of its life? and they're so hideously drunk on stage it violates every occupational health and safety standard in this country!? Hmmm maybe I'm beginning to understand why I'm giving these idiots a "five star rating" in the first place.. YOU MAGNIFICANT BAAASTARDS I THINK I LOVE YOU!! Yup this is The Crying Game. When we first saw them play live back in March (and everyone who witnessed it lost at least three points of their IQ), they promised us that it was only ever going to be a "once in a lifetime" event. They lied, because obviously they're here again tonight. The good news however is that they're definitely a "once in a lifetime" event worth repeating in that they're not only Adelaide's worst cover band, but they're also Adelaide's worst injoke thinly disguised as a "Adelaide supergroup" impersonating a cover band to ever front a live stage and promptly fall off of it; repeatedly in their failed attempt to even hold a tune. I mean let's name and shame the guilty parties here: Matt Banham from No Through Road, Mike Radzevicius from Aviator Lane, Matt Hayward from Central Deli Band, Luke Eygenraam from The Waterslides, Sam Stearne from Fire! Santa, Rosa Fire! and Lachlan Wilson from Steering By Stars!? I mean it's absolutely mind boggling to think just how much talent is going to waste here (short of Matt Banham and Matt Hayward of course.. as I think we can all agree they're very much in their element). Yup by every definition their entire operation is a complete fucking shambles. Every song is hamfisted through with the bare minimum consideration for tuning, timing, structure, lyrical content, cohesion or even for the audience foolish enough to stand too close to the stage to which they'll frequently target for all out abuse. Matt Hayward is the main offender for this: as he'll spend most of the second half of the set barrelling straight into them and sending everyone flying like he's a bowling ball to their ten pins; but each and everyone of them will just as easily bicker amongst themselves like a bad family reunion. And yes I realise I've made almost NO mention of the songs so far but mostly because they're utterly irrelevant (as much as I can gather they're simply covers of bogan classics from the 70's and 80's) but also because the only one I can even remember in detail (as I captured on video) was a cover of Dire Straight's "Money For Nothing". Yup make no mistake this band is so BEYOND "karaoke" retarded it's practically a religious experience, I spent most of it howling tears of laughter as it got progressively more stupid, and if ever they repeat it a third time? I'd highly recommend you bring three spare pair of pants, a cigarette lighter and a cricket bat. The Crying Game. No really, what the FUCK just happened!?
2:48AM - And so here I am at last. I don't know how, but I've survived right to the very end. All four limbs, ten fingers, ten toes, five senses and miscellaneous "squiggly bits" accounted for. YEAAAS I'M STILL ALIVE!! WAAAUHAHAhAhAHaHAhAhAHA!! I stand verily dumbfounded in all that I have witnessed, all that I have documented, all that I HAVEN'T DOCUMENTED (as quite frankly I was too drunk to remember it) surely the most ridiculously epic and overblown long weekend I've ever witnessed in the Adelaide since pretty much the last one.. FUUUCK!! I don't know if this is "shock" I'm experiencing right now, I don't know if it's normal that the entire left side of my body has gone completely numb, or why I'm endlessly fascinated with these Zildjian cymbals stacked on stage all of a sudden like they're golden potato chips.. but fuck damn it feels good to be alive!
2:53AM - And so I take a brief moment to regain my bearings, or maybe they're marbles, or a deck of cards (with a few too many jokers), either way I'm pretty sure at least $3.75 in change rolled out of my skull at some point or another (metaphoric or otherwise) and now I'm frantically searching through all the bits of broken glass here in the hopes I could find it; and then satisfied at last that I've gathered all I need? yup, I head back to the bar with aims to cash it in for beer!
2:57AM - It is then that I join these two seasoned "survivors" in the back room for one last quiet drink before we all head home: Sean Kemp from Booster and Matthew Hill from Ambush Marketing (and about a billion other side projects I keep "accidently" rejecting facebook event invites from) all bent twisted and frail, desperately clinging to their beers like they've hit every thorny branch on the tree of life right down to the very bottom; like they've gone toe to toe in the ring with this long weekend and lost every last round but never bowed down and accepted defeat; until I realise they've only just arrived in the past hour or so and they NORMALLY look this fucked up. Ooops!
2:59AM - Still looks can be deceiving. They may look like they're knocking on death's door with a brown paper bag full of burning excrement, but they're "immortals" just like me maaan! Freak beings of longevity who cannot be harmed by weapons forged of man, beast, or Japanese videogame designers, I could learn a lot from them! Take Sean for instance, taking pride in his mad concoction of beer and red cordial. I forget what it was called exactly, whether it was a "stoplight", "randy" or a "DEAR GAWD WHAT HAVE I DONE TO MY SPLEEN AND WHY IS MY STOMACH LINING REJECTING ME!?" but I'm suitably impressed, so much so I promptly excuse myself to go "answer the phone", find the nearest exit and I get the fuck out of there. That shit ain't natural!
3:53AM - But then, just before I could even THINK to leave, they started arriving: first in a light trickle, then a steady stream, then a stampede trampling me underfoot on a bee-line to the TVs and projection screens behind me (and possibly also to the free pizza.. if it weren't for the fact that me, Matt and Sean had already eaten it all an hour earlier *burp*). There was no way I could even think of escaping now, duuude it would be entirely un-Australian of me! the first World Cup decider between the Socceroos and Germany was about to begin and my night out was faaar from over!
3:54AM - And yes I know what you're thinking, and you'd be dead right too: I don't know the first thing about soccer, pfft.. I couldn't care less duuude! But what I DO care about is beer, and when you've had nearly enough of it like I have tonight it doesn't matter WHAT you put in front of me, as long as there a hoard of blithering pissheads cheering it on IT'S GOOD ENOUGH FOR ME!!
3:57AM - And so quite against my better judgement that told me I should've left HOURS ago? here I am celebrating with the rest of these chimps like our entire lives has been leading upto this point, singing the Australian National Anthem at the top of our lungs, or more accurately shouting it wailingly offkey. Of course nobody really knows the words, pfft.. nobody really cares! just as long as you blast it in the approximate cadence and wave your beer about all triumphantly you'll still feel like you belong to the best damn country in the entire world.. GO YOU FUCKING AUSSIES!!
Or at least until your team gets thrashed 4-0.
Yup that was Sunday night drinking us under the table until dawn by every definition that it wasn't a Sunday or a Thursday or even a Saturday night but the devil incarnate in howling dysfunction rendering all of our calendars hideously dyslexic. And now I have no fucking clue what day of the week it is, why I have this bruise on my leg the size of a grapefruit (or where it came from) or why it took me almost two weeks to write a blog about it only to backdate it to last Thursday!? Sunday the day of rest? Sunday the sanctuary? Sunday the institution? (now emphasis on the mental) that we gleefully burnt to the ground in a hooting, shrieking, faeces flinging FUCK YOU to the natural order!? Yup as much as it was head explodingly awesome tonight, and as much as I'd easily do it again (and accidentally "lose" my camera so I wouldn't be compelled to write about it.. HA!!), when the stakes are stacked as ridiculously high as this.. who even has time for a hangover anymore!?