BIG DAY OUT ROUND UP Pt 2!

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 img_4104Oi You! Yeah you,  Johnny/Jaynie come lately, we started this whole thing back here! Caught up? good, click here to

img_4238Mungo – On a Serious-but-not-Sombre note, the acts at Lily World get criminally overlooked by most of punters. Hailing from “Canadia”, Son of Dave(Real name Ben Darvill) is the definition of a one man band. With the assistance of an audio looper, Darvill beatboxes, skats/sings, and blows on his harmonica to produce the funkiest 21st century blues I’ve heard yet (he probably hears that description a lot I imagine). In spite of being marred by some sound issues and back stage squabbling, it was a fantastic set , a damn shame there was only 50 people paying attention, max. No matter which year I’ve gone, Lily World drags out some quality quirk I’d never think to expect. One year I’ll end up spending the entire day there, I think.

Kathleen – After a quick chill sesh at Lilyworld – very VERY necessary people – we headed over to Lupe Fiasco. This bloke was freaking awesome, despite the bullshit that he went on with in a vague attempt to hype up the crowd. Nevertheless everybody was loving him and he made a much appreciated effort to engage the entire audience, running from one end of the stage to the other a number of times. Popular hit Superstar went off with superb energy and he didn’t let up for the rest of the set, having a good dance every chance he got.

Now it was time for some local flavour. Sydney outfit Mercy Armshad an obscure mix of eccentricities amongst band members, with guitarist Kirin Callinin, indulging in some rather awkward stage antics which in terms of craziness almost reached the level of his outfit. Frontman Thom Moore is lucky enough to have a voice that is beautiful not only when singing but when talking too, soothing my weary soul.

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Local kids I Heart Hiroshima make me love them more and more every time I see them. Matthew’s unique voice is fantastic especially when combined with the ever entertaining Susie – her img_4283energy is phenomenal – her drums really cop it and for a significant time so did her head from a tambourine. They belted out song after song, finishing up the set with an unfortunately cut down version of the ridiculously catchy Punks.

I’d like to chime in here actually. The word zeitgeist is awfully pretentious, but it’s appropriate when talking about I Heart Hiroshima. There’s this immediacy to what they do that’s striking, like they’ve stripped and gutted out anything that’d weight the music down. Although half of the music is about being damaged goods and getting screwed over, the energy, confidence, and seeming effortlessness they perform with counterbalances the bummer elements. Ah, to hell with being cool and aloof, it’s fucking inspiring. This is where the Brisbane sound is headed.

//www.micn2sugars.co.uk/
Image by Vern @ http://www.micn2sugars.co.uk/

Cut Copy delivered a “makes you wanna dance so hard” set which even received an on the shoulders episode during Feel the Love. They had indulged in some green flashing lights which I’m sure have burnt holes in my retinas and well known songs like Hearts on Fire garnered some severe audience participation to be envied by even the most popular bands.

Man, my inner bogan is sure feeling deprived though.

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Ah, much better. Mammalsound pretty much exactly as they look, the vocals are more yelled than sung, the drums are bashed with aplomb, the guitars more thashed than plucked etc. There was a lot of quaint (sorry if your reading this guys, but I don’t mean it disparagingly) “Hey, how neat is Satan!” going on at the start of the set, but far from being empty hedonistic mess, there’s a far more righteous agenda driving the music forward. From the opening lines of “The Minority”, I felt a rush  similar to the first time I first heard Rage Against The Machine. Mammal is metal for the masses, and well worth your time even if metal isn’t your usual bag.

Hot Chip were good, but I was just too plain tired to dance, which is kinda the point of Hot Chip. They definitely put an effort into making it as live a show as possible, and while the songs are still recognisable, they feel a bit looser? They burned through a lot of the ‘Greatest Hits’ songs early on, so when I bailed halfway through, it still feels complete. When I think back, I haven’t actually eaten after 10am, which might have something to do with it.

And then it was the ultimate – Arctic Monkeys – oh my. In a bid to get as close to the front (as the D barrier was full) I surrendered my dignity and crawled my way to the front of the second barrier with my friends sheepishly following behind apologising to fellow patrons for my fraudulent drunkenness – if you were one of those people I sincerely apologise, but it was so worth it. After that epic debacle those sexy Sheffield boys hit the stage with their intoxicating swagger and dopey, but “makes you melt on the inside”, British accents. It was a good selection of songs including When The Sun Goes Down, Fluorescent Adolescent and a few new tunes. I hate to say this but it was a disappointingly unenergetic performance, especially considering the boys have just had a year off from touring. Admittedly, the atmosphere did pick up with I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor, followed by Brianstorm, but they ended a set with a downbeat tune leaving many feeling a bit unsatisfied.

img_44008:15 – There are two Big Day Outs at this point. A huge Exodus took place after the Arctic Monkeys towards the boiler room, where Prodigy were playing in an hour. A significantly reduced crowd shuffled over to the Orange Stage for Neil Young. I always feel a bit sceptical when I hear that an older Musician is in town. Two or three years ago at BDO (I forget when specifically and can’t be assed googling it), it didn’t feel like I was watching the Iggy & the Stooges play. To me, it felt like watching a highly skilled cover band, playing tribute to their younger selves. This was not like that. This was Neil Fucking Young.

I was amazed at how dedicated Neil was, and how the music held up 30, 40 years later. True, a couple of the lyrics are a bit clunky now, but there was no phoning it in from this man. I wasn’t really all that familiar with his back catalogue, but it turns out I knew a hell of a lot than I though I did. And it was also the mellowest main stage audience I’ve ever seen in my life, all the Moshers & Shovers had left, leaving people to sway or just be still and enjoy the event in their own little world.

I had a bit of a recoup sitting on the floor at Dropkick Murphys – bad idea, I got trampled by an intoxicated fat man and have the scars to prove it – but that’s beside the point, the Irish rockers were pretty freaking awesome and the variety of instruments was really refreshing.

My night wrapped up with The Prodigy (not before a stint in the silent disco though – most ingenious concept ever). Their crazy infusion of electro rock (if that’s the way to describe it?) is intense and epic. Maxim looked intimidating with his white painted eyes and tatts, in fact they all looked kind of scary, but the performance was not to be missed. They delivered consistently and although I left early I managed to catch Omen and classic Breathe (oh the happy childhood memories – I was six when it was released) along with a few others and departed feeling more than content.

 And that’s it! Extra special thanks to Kathleen & Mungo for their reviews, and we look forward to more from both of them in the upcoming year!  All Photo’s by authors except where noted, used as per Creative Commons agreements outlined here. Images from Vern @ http://www.micn2sugars.co.uk/ used as per CC agreements outlined here.
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