Words and images by James Adams.
Arrrhhhh Sydney. Old Sydney town. The harbour city. My old stomping ground. I returned with a schedule that was exhausting to look at and much the same to live. But I did live and am here to report on the weekend that saw me catch 7 bands, 5 Ubers, countless friends, 3 body surfs, 2 foul sky writing displays and a shameful amount of pub meals in 3 days.
The weather blessed me, my friends spoilt me, and the music fuelled me in traversing the city from South to West to East and right to the heart of the beast. I didn’t go north. Fuck that. north doesn’t even get a capital letter.
Back in the hub
Jimmy The Hand & Maclay Heriot
It’s impressive and motivating seeing these artists hustle and making the most of a sub optimal situation. That seems to be the theme, making the most of what you have.
For example, Kirin implored the crowd to spin their chairs around and straddle them because it’s easier to have fun that way. He then introduced one of many guest vocalists, fashion photographer Byron Spencer, before going on to execute the uncomfortable elbow tap greeting with the entire crowd.
To make up for not being able to play to more people Drac Hammond live streamed and recorded his first show before closing it by giving his beautiful mother a bouquet of roses.
Adapting to the shifting playing fields and making it worth it. For the crowds that are supporting the bands and for the bands that are playing for the crowds. Everyone is willing to try a little harder to make it work and it is working.
It was interesting watching how different music was either suited or ill-suited to watching bands with your butt in a seat.
Andy Golledge’s slower tunes are perfect to lean back into your low bistro chair, fold your arms with a beer in your hand and take it all in with a tear in your eye. Kirin’s more upbeat tunes suited the more engaged forward leaning, edge of your plastic venue seat viewing. When he introduced Genesis Owusu to the stage it became hard to keep planted at all.
Watching Trinidad hip-hop act Bruk Flex suited the red velvet couches to a tee but watching Miniskirt's crowd white knuckle grasping their cheap wooden chairs and bouncing around on them lead me to believe it’s not the most appropriate format or chair to watch punk bands in. It also led me to believe wheeled office chairs could be fun for punk shows. Maybe it’s not just about the music but the chair you’re viewing them from. The more appropriate the chair the more viewable the show.
Sitting out the front of a pub with a few mates in the afternoon sun before walking up to the at capacity venue and seeing a fun show that’s still got vibe and energy is as satisfying as an afternoon or evening as you could ask for.
Hommus, Neil (in the Flaming Moe Tee) & Rhi
Caitlin Harnett from Caitlin Harnett and the Pony Boys
It’s clear that people are becoming more relaxed and used to the safety parameters while still being vigilant and respectful of them. Trying to enjoy being out and social without fucking it up for everyone. Live music has always had a dangerous and temperamental feeling to it. Now with a more real threat to health involved this added element of danger, as unwanted as it is, has proven it can fit into the mix until it’s bled dry and we can return to the danger element being less scary and more .... sexy.
It’s no surprise that i’m returning home with heavy eyes, ringing ears and a desire to wash my hair. It’s been too long and although it’s a mild exhaustion I’d rather not live with indefinitely, it’s a welcome reunion with the sluggish feeling that’s paired with the satisfaction of knowing you’ve just had a time worthy of bleeding your energy dry.
Thank you for coming back live music. And if you need me, I’ll be sleeping.
Words and images by James Adams.
PS - We love James' work so much we decided to bring out more tees which feature his imagery. Check them out online now:
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