I love the variety of acts one encounters in the Workers Club bandroom. In the span of one evening you can take in some jangly lo-fi indie, white boy rap and experimental synth pop.
Kicking off the party was Cat Cat whose LP Uralba has been on high rotation on my stereo all year. The trio have some well written tunes but the performance aspect of their set was lacking. There is absolutely nothing interesting about going to watch a band who sound exactly like their CD, failing to bring something extra or even exchange with the crowd.
I enjoyed Conor Hutchison’s and Warwick Smith’s deadpan vocals but could just as easily have sat at home and listened to the album without having to endure a night out with the under 25 hipper-than-thou club. As it was, the boys barely moved onstage and appeared to be as indifferent as their sound. They vastly improved toward the end of their set, going out large with the lush melodies and letting the music take over. Here’s hoping to see more of that magic from them in the future.
The exciting thing about Aussie hip hop is that it’s an emerging genre that can quite literally go in any direction as more young artists start honing their skills and turning their influences into a whole new sound. For Brothers Hand Mirror that sound was offensive to my ears as Oscar Slorach-Thorn dropped some ‘phat beats’ over a mish-mash of glitchy 90’s tape loops that was a mess of grating white noise.
Performance wise though, Grant Gronewald was vibing hard and was lost in a whirl of awkwardly angled limbs as he got down with the crowd – most of whom seemed to be enjoying themselves. I personally cannot take a man who wears leggings as pants seriously, but Gronewald’s earnest delivery was endearing nonetheless. Brothers Hand Mirror is a taste I’m yet to acquire and in spite of my ambivalence to their muzak, Gronewald’s energetic on stage antics were fun to watch and the hand drawn comics he handed out to the crowd were a nice touch to a unique rap display.
I was born and raised in Hobart and for those not in the know, Tasmania is like a gigantic, greener version of Frankston. During my formative years I was subjected to a variety of metal and pub rock bands and I almost cried with happiness when I stumbled across fellow Hobartians Tiger Choir who do eclectic pop very well. They flew across the Tasman to launch Unicycles on vinyl and while the stock of LP’s hadn’t actually arrived in time for the celebrations, the four-piece still threw one hell of a party that came complete with a freaky bunny & kitty video display running at the back of the stage.
Tiger Choir are raucous bastards and their live show was a grand display of youthful enthusiasm and rollicking good times as the boys let loose, giving their all to the performance, highlights of which were rocking renditions of “Ephemeral City” and “Vultures”. They have such an infectious sound and their enthusiasm had the crowd up and grooving and begging for more when their short set drew to a close to keep in line with noise curfews. Tiger Choir are the kind of band who are better live than they are on record. Check em out next time they’re in your hood. You won’t regret it.