Bringing together a brilliant array of musicians from across the globe, Culture Collide is certainly an exciting, vibrant music festival. Having first experienced our first night of the festival after jumping off the plane from Australia, our second night was perhaps a little easier to manage as we ran between venues, wanting to catch as many acts as possible. Catching acts from locations including Iceland, Amsterdam, Sweden and our very own Australia, it was fantastic to see such a diverse range of musicians across the course of the night.
The night kicked off with the Dutch Impact Party, presenting Netherlands band Moss. Hailing from Amsterdam, Moss played a charming set filled with indie pop numbers that were instantly likeable. Out to perform numbers from their latest album, Ornaments, which was released earlier this year, Moss certainly managed to gain whole new bunch of admirers on the night. Presenting strong melodies along with fast punchy beats, Moss’ entire set had a joyous vibe to it that left us all wanting more.
Following this, I made my way to catch Australia’s very own Thomas Calder, from the Brisbane based alternative folk act The Trouble With Templeton (pictured above). Performing an acoustic set at The Church, Calder proved himself to be an astoundingly expressive singer with a gift for writing enchantingly raw and heartfelt songs. With his talent for delivering his vocals in an amazingly emotional manner that shifts from a gentle whisper to powerfully assertive, Calder has a flair for drawing his listeners into the that carries his songs. On top of playing a great deal of new material, including the wonderful single “Six Months In A Cast”, Calder brought out a few songs from his debut album, Bleeders, including the record’s title track. Bowing out to a standing ovation, it was easy to why he has been making waves in the Australian music scene lately, and now, too, the world!
After then being able to catch the final song by Australian songstress Penny Hewson, an acoustic singer-songwriter, I wandered into one of the nearby venues to discover a fantastic set by Immanu El. A Swedish five piece, Immanu El create rich atmospheric rock that features echoing guitars and soaring vocals. With songs that escalate into pounding instrumental sections against high reaching vocals, these guys stood out as a powerful live act. Similarly, the Icelandic band Sudden Weather Change made a strong impression as another outstanding live band. An experimental rock act that creates sprawling numbers with heavy beats and smooth vocals, it was clear that Sudden Weather Change are out to forge their own unique sound. While their faster track “The Blues” stood out as a favourite, the entire set was of an impressively high quality.
To bring the night to an end, I ventured to The Church to see much loved UK artist Patrick Wolf. Despite the fact that Wolf began twenty minutes late, this was a show that was well worth sticking around for. Opening with the track “Armistice” from his 2011 album Lupercalia, Wolf’s vocals sounded superb in the church setting, even if he may have had to battle through a few sound and technical problems along the way (which was often made up for by spontaneous Q&A opportunities for the intimate crowd. Other stand-out tracks performed across the set included the energetic ‘Tristan’, a song perfectly tailored to Wolf’s theatrical vocal delivery. ‘Vulture’ was a fitting song for our location as he opened the tune with the lyrics, “losing my head to Hollywood”, while his closing song “Magic Position” was a sure crowd favourite. A gifted musician with a wonderfully flamboyant nature, Patrick Wolf it was certainly a treat to be able to see the singer in such a small setting.
Looking back at a night packed with quality sets by both much-love and freshly discovered artists, this was certainly an exciting night of music at a festival slowly but steadily growing in its international reputation.
Photos by Jasmine Safaeian of FILTER, except for The Trouble With Templeton by Larry Heath.