Back in 2010, when the Pixies last played Vector Arena, we all thought this would be the last, and ultimate, Pixies concert of all time, and that seeing them re-formed with Kim Deal made life worth living, and nothing could ever compare. They should give up and go home.
Well, thanks for proving me wrong. Last night in a way surpassed the earlier show. Maybe my expectations had changed, but also I think because the audience, made up of a cross section of die-hard fans from the eighties and nineties, with newly minted Pixies aficionados, were totally up for it.
Kicking off with Where Is My Mind and Here Comes Your Man, the scene was set for a night of crowd pleasing tunes, played with unfaltering acumen by all, including the not so new Kim, who is actually Paz Lenchantin, formerly of The Perfect Circle.
The setlist will give you the best taste of the night. Interestingly they played 28 songs in 2010 also. Remembering your average Pixies song is shorter than you'd think, this took around 90 minutes, but that was absolutely enough. It was unflinching and relentless, without any breaks for banter. The only time you might have thought he was engaging with the audience was at the beginning of Hey.
If you want three hour sets, go see The Cure*.
Special thanks to Josie at Great Things for the chance to shoot one of my all time favourite bands.
Last night was my second visit to Hollywood Avondale as a music venue, with the first being Tiny Ruins and friends in December last year. It has quickly become a favourite.
An easy 7 minutes drive from home, and although we had to walk for 2 minutes from the car (in joke), it is so damn convenient compared to many a city venue.
A quick search for some background on the recent sale (2015) and refurbishment of the renowned Cinema didn't throw up much, other than widespread joy that it wasn't being demolished. The basic form and function remains the same, and throughout the evening Matt Timpson projects old movie trailers on the main wall, or visuals through the performances, using what I believe is an original 35mm projector and film stock. It certainly adds an ambience and old-worldliness that greatly appeals to my Super 8mm movie collecting geek-dom.
With seating in the mezzanine circle and some at the back of the standing area, there was plenty of options for all the generations in attendance. Both nights we've been there different food providers were stationed outside the back door. Last night was Judge Bao and in December it was Coreana Tacos. Drinks were served in the adjacement hall, with a slection of two wines, two beers and fizzies. What else do you need really?
Well, since you asked, chocolate. We were hankering for something sweet. Even a chocolate dipped ice cream would have worked.
As to the performances, I feel I've seen Bob Scott solo half a dozen times in the past few years, and he never disappoints. One thing though, if he or Hollie happen to ever read this, I'm still waiting to hear the whole Green House album played live with the both of you. Cheers.
Stand up poetry is not everyone's cup of tea, and takes quite a degree of bravery to pull it off in a large room with an unfamiliar audience. Fortunately Hera Lindsay Bird gives zero fucks what you or I think, and when she started with 'let's have 20 minutes of poetry about sex', she wasn't the one feeling self conscious in the room. I think she's bloody awesome.
Finally to Aldous Harding. If you haven't seen her perform, it would be hard to imagine the way in which she lives every moment of her songs through movement and facial expressions. Maybe the term 'Fierce Folk' would be appropriate, especially when she ramped up some of her older songs.
Her new album Party, due in March, was produced with John Parish of PJ Harvey fame, and we were treated to many songs off the album, some old ones, including a rocking version of Hunter, and even a few which she says will be on the next next album.
Horizon the single, Silke informed me, was due to be released today, so you can get that from whichever outlet you prefer. The Video was released 7 hours ago, so this would seem to confirm the above.
Overall, a great night, and I have a feeling I'll be trying to maintain a regular attendance at the Hollywood Avondale shows.
Albert Park has a long history as a music venue, so those of you used to the 95bFM Summer Series, or perhaps veterans of Dragon playing in the Rotunda in 1975 (see AudioCulture), will have felt quite comfortable about the shift from the pavement of Silo Park to the penthouse up the hill. In fact you were probably wondering what took them so long.
I'm going to give the venue a resounding tick, and leave it to others who might wish to pick the details apart. We had an excellent day; found shade when we needed it; ate dumplings without queuing; had Korean tacos as the day faded and access to all the water we could drink... which was a lot. FTR trees are the best air-conditioning units ever invented.
As to the music, I enjoyed all that I saw, however I had work to do, and ended up snacking rather than spending meaningful time listening to any particular act. The Veils were favourites, both because I'm a keen fan, and their performance had a great intensity. Although I hear that Refused took the prize for wildest act, and longest mic lead on the day.
Starting at 12.30 to catch Fazerdaze and The Chills, by 9pm I was out of steam, so wasn't there for the great confetti explosion.
Feel free to share your Laneway stories, venue reviews, and photos taken on whatever device you had handy.
It may have been around for almost forty years, but as a rock venue
there's nothing inspiring about the Logan Campbell Centre in Auckland. The venue's reputation as a dank concrete barn in the middle of a carpark, with bad sound and endless queues for a drink, is difficult to shake off. But the place does have history, and to add to a
string of legendary shows over the years (Ramones, the Clash,
Nirvana, Lou Reed, Lee Perry, New Order, Beck . . . ) we can now add PJ Harvey and band on January 24 2017.
Simon Kay was there, and took these photos as 'just a fan
photographing from the crowd' but they capture something of the
compelling performance by this great musician and her excellent band.