Sunday, November 27, 2005

My Visit to Hoochie Sixteen Year Old City

Otherwise known as Southern Amp.

So on the way home from work on Friday night I gave into a random impulse and bought a ticket to Southern Amp, Christchurch's attempt at running a cut down version of the Big Day Out. I wasn't expecting much, but ended up being very impressed with the performances so I'm really glad I went.

When I first arrived I was surprised at how few people there were. It got better as the day went on but I'm curious as to whether they made much money. Compare and contrast with the Big Day Out:

Southern Amp:

Big Day Out:

The first band to play after I arrived was Steriogram. I'm not much of a fan of theirs but it was cold and a little wet so I went up in front of the stage to get warm. In any case they're a decent live band so I didn't mind watching them. I wish I'd gotten a picture of the dude with the mullet in front of me during White Trash though.

Next up was The D4, again they're a band I don't have much time for ordinarily but I have to admit they are good live. I was impressed with how hard they got the crowd going when they opened for Velvet Revolver and they did the same again here.

Some terrible pop-rock band was up after that and I was also getting massively sunburned, forcing me to retreat to the hip-hop tent where I attempted unsuccessfully to appreciate DJ Sir-vere. Once that was over with I emerged to go and see Pluto, who as usual did not disappoint. The audience was very passive during the performance but they got a lot of applause after each song. Dance Stamina in particular went over really well and was a highlight of the day for me too.

Following them were Breaks Co-op, a band who I had previously written off as obnoxiously trendy stuff for old people who want to appear hip, the kind of thing that gives Russell Brown a hard on and puts everyone else to sleep. I must say I've completely misjudged them, their set, while extremely mellow was played with a lot of passion and I may just buy their album.

Next up was Spiderbait, one of the headliners from Australia. These guys have been around for a while and I was surprised to realise how many of their songs I knew. They put on a good show, but not the best of the day.

The Hoodoo Guru's were forced to pull out for some reason or other, and they were replaced by The Bleeders. This suited me pretty well because I don't know who the Hoodoo Guru's are and I like The Bleeders. Their set was pretty decent and despite my sarcastic comment about the moshpit below it actually got a bit rougher toward the end.

After that Elemeno P were due to come on, so I again retreated to the secondary stage, now renamed the dance tent rather than the hip-hop tent. I have no idea who the guy playing was but he was pretty good. “Oh my God”, I thought to myself, “I'm sober, I'm dancing to trance and I'm having a good time!?” It was freaky. Following that I caught a very brief bit of Minuet before heading back outside for The Living End.

I wasn't expecting much from them, I'd seen them a couple of times before and I like their singles but I definitely wasn't expecting them to be the best band of the day, which is what they turned out to be. As well as having a full repertoire of catchy stomping punk anthems they're pretty fucking awesome musicians too. Almost enough to make me rethink going to the Big Day Out.

Last up were Blindspott, I was pretty exhausted by that stage so I didn't really get into it much. They were decent at any rate but nothing special either.

In the end it turned out to be a really good day, and I hope they did well financially because if it keeps going it will only get better.

Pictures follow:

No comments: