We are all quite aware that the Music Scene in Melbourne makes many other cities jealous and resembles in some way what Seattle was in the 90’s or what Liverpool was in the 60’s, although today with Globalisation there is not anymore just one city being the World’s Music Hub. From Melbourne however we have great names like Nick Cave, The Avalanches and the newly born Star Tash Sultana and obviously, King Gizzard.
As I Walked down my street I knew only one thing. I would probably be late since in Melbourne all shows have the tendency to start on time. Got in the tram and manage to choose the wrong one and after a 5 minutes ride I was now 15 minutes even further walking from the venue, combining a total of an hour walk with the concert starting 10 minutes later than that. I held tight to the plastic bottle with red wine I had prepared to drink during my tram ride and walked my legs off until I finally made it to the Night Cat in Fitzroy, where a 360 degree stage was waiting for me. I was there 5 minutes late and only after 45 minutes of bad alternative rock DJ’ing they finally appeared to cover their first of two concerts that night.
I decided I wanted to be close to the band in the first concert in order to try to grasp how was the band’s family relationship between the 7 members and how everything developed from song to song. And I could not be happier with my choice where I could stare deep into Eric Moore’s eyes that were wide open and focused on what Michael the second drummer was doing so that there would be a perfect synchronisation between them the whole first show. More focused on displaying their new sounds from “Microtonal Flying Banana” that managed to pump the crowd as life emerged from “Nuclear Fusion” and “RattleSnake” as never heard before with the whole band putting their maximum effort to be focused on what they know how to do best, PLAY!
Negative Points that were starting to resemble were: the null communication between the band and the audience, since both seem to appear to focused in understanding how all these sounds were being reproduced in a Noise-Garage-Progressive way and blending into one new sound that only they can create and an intense and constant high that transported everyone in the venue to a planet not known to the majority of mankind.
Cigarette break after 40 minutes of new songs that got the fans excited towards the second part of the show that they knew could be more interactive since the older themes were the ones that made many of the crazy weirdos inside that Bar go to a concert of such a band. I felt welcomed among these fans that were clearly living in another dimension that I was profoundly fond of, where reality had no space.
For this second part I decided to go to the front of the stage where I was now 5 meters away from the band itself but well drowned inside of the crowd. And then… Madness started. Side by side with me I had a 2.10 meter tall Cowboy with a beard that would make Chet Faker look like a baby, a hat that was more Australian than the character itself and a lot of piercings and tattoo to create some more contrast in this human canvas. This same person crowd-surfed for at least some good 30 seconds with his not that much smaller nor lighter friend in a tough, masculine and heavily high on teostorone crowd composed of approximately 80 persons. After him, a crazy rastafari weighting probably half of the cowboy just goes up the 1.5 meter fence that surrounded the stage and jumps faithfully in the crowd that probably hurt by such an impact did not disappoint and took him almost to the band, where the bodyguards that I would expect to be going absolutely mental thinking as I was that Apocalypse was near when there were at least 6 people surf-crowding at the same time were the greatest surprise of them all. Instead of going mental and physically punish the disorder people, they were helping them to have a successful wave always looking after the ones that would fall to make sure they were safe. Australia has this type of good surprises.
Musically Speaking, this second show managed to be even more intense than the first not only due to the crowd reaction towards the oldies as well as for the perfection with which the band now plays their older music blending the whole one and half hour of the second show in one song only as they did with their previous Album “Nonagon Infinity”. The last 15 minutes were just a mash-up of what we believe they wanted to do at that time sounding sometimes as if it would be some type of improvisation of whatever they had to give us after having felt the wild vibes from the crowd.
On a closing note, I don’t really know what happened in this concert. I know I was there but in some way I was somewhere else where this guys musically inhabit. Every time Stu Mackenzie, the vocalist, would do his tongue out head shake dance I would be reminded of how insane this band was in so many other levels than music. And every time Ambrose Smith, the 100 job man (played synth, harmonica, piano, second voice, vocalist, guitarist, etc.), would make out with the harmonica creating sounds I have never heard I was reminded of how insanely good this 7 guys are as musicians.