On Saturday I headed along to the Lovejam Music festival at
the Beach Road Hotel in Bondi. There were four stages from midday to midnight –
and as such, a lot of acts. Bondi Beach Road is a pretty good venue, but I felt
that the rapid transition between the forty or so acts was just a little full
Aside from that, I saw some fantastic bands on the day.
First and foremost were Captain Kickarse and the Awesomes, an awesome
experimental/prog act from Sydney. The three piece put on a fantastic show on a
small stage, as well as blowing the mind of everyone in the room.
It’s rare that a band will captivate everyone in the room,
but Captain Kickarse and the Awesomes did exactly that. With beautifully
composed melodies and tightly orchestrated rhythms, Captain Kickarse and the
Awesome were probably my pick of the day.
Next on my list of awesome surprises were Lovers Jump Creek.
I’ve seen them a couple of times, but they’ve always been missing something
from their performance. A recent lineup change as well as more shows under
their belts has lead to a smoother show, and far more powerful performance.
Their funk-fused rock is brimming with raw potential,
combining shredding metal riffs with tight, rocking drums and driving bass. The
lead vocalist, Mark Webber, brings some special to the table. I can't wait to see these guys as they develop more.
The all girl pop-punk act Bonney Read were fantastic as
well. I only managed to catch half of their set, but was left wanting more. Often
it’s really easy to cop out and just compare girl-fronted rock bands to
Paramore. In the case of Bonney Read, not much could be farther from the truth.
Soaring melodies and strong guitar are all there – but there isn’t a girl band
cliché I can see.
My final top pic were The Money Smokers, a bluesy rock band
from Sydney. While they were more than crammed onto the stage, they delivered a
great performance. They’ve got all the blues-balls a band called The Money
Smokers should have. Can’t wait to catch them again this weekend at Newton’s
Nation in Bathurst.
Also of note were synth-rock/pop act Conics (formerly If We
Had A Boat), who I’d like to see again with a better sound mix and less focus
on the synth. Earlier in the day, Castlecomer filled me with musical happiness
with their jungley harmoic juices. From the acoustic stages (which I missed out
on for the most part) was solo act Jackson Davey, who I wish I could find on
The event was great, and really showcased a lot of fantastic
independent music. With a little more promotion and a far less crammed
schedule, it has the capacity to be an amazing independent festival.