If you’ve seen Regurgitator perform live you know that their shows are high energy ones. They’re also partial to a great costume and some interesting visuals. Their children’s show, Pogogo has all these same ingredients. The big change however, was that the content of the songs was less G-spot and more G-rated.
The trio performed at Sydney Festival in the Magic Mirrors Spiegeltent along with Koko Wallace from Planet Rainbow. The foursome acted like a bunch of big kids. This could be seen from their rocking about in fluorescent jumpsuits with highlighter-coloured instruments, down to Ben Ely saying he’d left his guitar pick “At home with my Mum!”
The group performed cuts from their recent kids’ record, The Really Really Really Really Boring Album. Like the Regurgitator material written for adults, these songs were a fusion of hip-hop, punk, dance and funk. These adults also introduced each song with a little sketch or segue. “Ghost Cat” saw Koko dressed up like a friendly, ghoulish feline. “The Box” was based around it being Quan Yeomans’ birthday- his twelfth in recent times. The kids loved this premise the best, they all got up to help the front man unwrap his gift.
There was no doubt that the band were pulling out all of the stops to hold the attention of the little ones. The songs were short, sharp and played fast. The grown-ups asked the kids to take part in a giant high five and a Mexican wave, as well as answer some questions (just like you would at a pantomime). Regurgitator’s acting was also as over-the-top and hammy as a panto. It was a super-happy fun time where the band did some goofy dancing and embraced their irreverent personalities.
It was interesting to watch the adult spectators at this show. They were lapping up having something a little bit different to your stock-standard children’s fair. It was great to see more than a few of them pass knowing looks and attempt to hide their delight as a song like “I Sucked a Lollipop” was pumped out. Sure, it may not be as much fun to scream as “I Sucked A Lot of Cock” but at least everyone got to play and have a jolly good time together.
The band also performed “Black Bugs” and they finished things off with “! The Song Formerly Known As”. The youngsters seemed to enjoy these, especially the last one because this is where they all got up and danced. In the earlier part of the show, the kids had sat up nice and straight at the front of the mosh pit. You could have imagined them saying, “Good morning Mr Ely” except Ben and his friends were embracing their inner kids (like all the adults present).
Pogogo had been a manic hour of fun and weirdness. It was like effervescent soda pop and bright pink bubble-gum, all sugary goodness that appeals to kids. The Gurge don’t take themselves too seriously and this stint as children’s entertainers is a fine fit. It appeals to all those polyester girls and boys…
FOUR STARS (OUT OF FIVE).
Regurgitator’s Pogogo plays as part of Sydney Festival until January 12. For more information and tickets please head HERE.