Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Friday Music: Jean's Laneway

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  • bob daktari, in reply to Mike O'Connell,

    some promoters and venues here in Auckland have taken to posting set times the day of the show, usually on Facebook or places like undertheradar and cheeseontoast - doesn't mean they will be early but at the least you know what you're in for

    never enjoyed late shows... bands are bad enough but I really hated it when there was a trend in DJ land the international would start at 4am...

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 540 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Well, that was the first time I’ve rocked up to a Laneway (or BDO) as late as 6pm And it was great.

    My buddy and I convened at 2pm, went down the Chev for a swim, had a beer, made an early dinner on the barbecue (fajitas with corn and tomato salsa) and generally hung out while everyone else was getting their heads baked on the asphalt at Laneway. 95bFM was good enough to air really good-sounding live excerpts from Nadia Reid, Leisure, Lontalius, The Internet, Shamir and more.

    And then we arrived during Battles’ excellent, rousing set, cool and refreshed. There was some terrible evidence of poor sun-safe practices already on display. It was kind of revelatory starting the evening without being tired. There was barely a queue for drink vouchers or to redeem them at the bars.

    We moved across the carpark to Hermitude, who were okay, but down the dumber end of the bass music thing that was big at Laneway this year. So it was off to the bar to see friends, then back out for Courtney Barnett, who was pretty much like she was a year ago, but still great. It’s fun the way people like to loudly sing along with her. (And when I say “people”, I mean me.)

    Lots of people loved Grimes – how could you not, she’s a phenomenon – but her voice didn’t always cut through for me. So we decamped to Beach House at the Cactus Cat stage and they were … spellbinding. Their swirling, reverby guitar-and-keyboards thing was entrancing and Victoria Legrand is a great big ball of onstage charisma. Wow.

    The stage is bigger, wider and better-provisioned than it’s ever been before and it really made a difference. At times in the past, Cactus Cat has just been a frustration, but it was a bloody triumph this year.

    On the way back to another break at the bar for Churches (who still sound bland to me) we stopped by the Thunderdome, where the sides have been opened up so there’s no need to regulate entry – which works way better. Sophie had missed his flight but his DJ, QT, was there, DJing crazy beats on her own. Mad crowd. Lots of fun!

    Flume was good on last at the big stage – all huge, crunchy bass and swathes of keyboard – and he dropped his remix of Lorde’s ‘Tennis Court’.

    But I wish we’d gone over to see Purity Ring even sooner, because they were, frankly, incredible. It’s customary for modern festival acts to put on big visual shows, but I’ve never seen contemporary dance/indie music so beautifully wrapped into a cohesive work of art. The lights, the theatre, everything. Wow again.

    I dunno, maybe next year (when Laneway will be in Auckland Domain, maybe) I’ll return to arriving early to see more acts, but doing it differently this year worked out bloody well.

    And a word for the punters. While, inevitably, a few of them peaked too early, in general the atmosphere was really nice. It’s the nature of these multi-stage events that people want to move around – in, out, back, forward – and everyone seemed to get how to respond to that. Crowd sense is a really important thing at big events like this. Well done, everyone.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to bob daktari,

    some promoters and venues here in Auckland have taken to posting set times the day of the show, usually on Facebook or places like undertheradar and cheeseontoast – doesn’t mean they will be early but at the least you know what you’re in for

    I greatly appreciate this practice.

    never enjoyed late shows… bands are bad enough but I really hated it when there was a trend in DJ land the international would start at 4am…

    Ridiculous.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report Reply

  • bob daktari, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Ridiculous.

    yep...

    I am liking how some of the dance promoters are doing day parties again and how the art gallery is doing daytime events (and of course the music in parks)

    viva the daylight revolution, or something

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 540 posts Report Reply

  • Jean Hughes,

    well the Laneways experience was mixed for me this year which was a pity.
    We went early to to see Leisure and East India Youth and I was glad we did as East India Youth was a real highlight and we were nice and close with heaps of room to spare. Diiv were good but after about 4 tracks we were moving on. Saw a wee bit of Goldlink, but not really my thing so on we went to see Thundercat which I thought would be really good. But the first 3 songs were all over the place, sounding like bad 60 jazz fusion so off again, people watching, and eating and drinking along the way.
    One big winner seemed to be fashion houses and high st shops that sold mini jumpsuits or play suits – the playground was fairly jumping with them in many guises. Boys wearing pj styled shorts looked cool too.
    We managed to get upstairs onto the 2º deck and watched Shamir from there – a very welcome cool breeze added to the sounds. He was fun and seeing the crowd from above added to it. Missed Oscar Key Sung as we were still cooling off on high, but managed to get down low for Battles which didn’t really appeal.
    By then it was time to get a good position for Courtney and in doing so were close to Hermitude who I did like more than I thought I would.
    Then it all got a bit messy and my day was kinda spoiled
    A young arrogant out of it man and his female sidekicks thought it would be fun to bully a couple of older women – me especially. Not content to trying to grab me about my person, calling me Grandma, he tried to simulate sexual goings on with me and asked the young equally out of it lads around us who wanted to “fuck Grandma” Not nice when you are all so close to each other. He stopped when my friend, turned and punched him in the stomach, totally surprised a ‘Grandma’ could do such a thing, after nicely asking him to cease. And his gal mates laughed and giggled along with the play – female solidarity obviously unheard of.
    We moved away and almost immediately another young, out of it idiot set his sights on us – heckling, poking, pointing and coming up really close – no amount of ignoring him would get him to stop. Again he had the backing of his mates, male and female and they just went on and on. By then Courtney was on and we did really want to listen and enjoy and happily she was not their cup of tea or they found someone even older or more female to bully and off they went, not before pointing two fingers at me and saying ’"we will be back"- bullies to the end.
    After this, even though Courtney had done her best, I felt old, tired and slightly emotional and went and sat down. Never in all the events I have been to (and there have been quite a few) have I been treated so meanly and unnecessarily so.
    It had been a long day – but we rallied to view Grimes from afar – I wasn’t going into that crowd again. Not quite the same feelings though I did like what I saw and heard.
    Then over for a brief listen to QT but the day had spoiled, tiredness had been given an in and I even flagged Flume to go home.
    So sad that my last Silo Laneway ended not with a bang but a whimper.
    And today I see we were not the only women whose Laneways was disrupted by bad mannered men.

    Mangere • Since Nov 2006 • 88 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Jean Hughes,

    ...we were not the only women whose Laneways was disrupted by bad mannered men.

    Very saddened to hear of your experience, Jeans - so much for music uniting the soul and spirit (and soothing the savage breast), where were security or police, or even a basic terms and conditions of entry - 'thou shalt not hassle or abuse other attendees without being evicted' - the modern NZ is becoming an uglier place, day by day...

    Musick has Charms to sooth a savage Breast,
    To soften Rocks, or bend a knotted Oak.
    I've read, that things inanimate have mov'd,
    And, as with living Souls, have been inform'd,
    By Magick Numbers and persuasive Sound.
    What then am I? Am I more senseless grown
    Than Trees, or Flint? O force of constant Woe!
    'Tis not in Harmony to calm my Griefs...
    ...Why am not I at Peace?

    William Congreve, 1697

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7953 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Jean Hughes,

    That disgusts me, Jean. Saw this morning about reporter Kim Vinnell's treatment there by similar shitheads. Something very wrong with the way those young men and women have been raised, to commit and tolerate that sort of vile, cowardly rubbish.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Jean Hughes,

    Then over for a brief listen to QT but the day had spoiled, tiredness had been given an in and I even flagged Flume to go home.
    So sad that my last Silo Laneway ended not with a bang but a whimper.
    And today I see we were not the only women whose Laneways was disrupted by bad mannered men.

    Oh Jean, I feel really angry about this. I suppose it makes sense that Hermitude would attract the morons, but this is just horrible and unacceptable.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Jeans

    <edit> Jean

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7953 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Very saddened to hear of your experience, Jean – so much for music uniting the soul and spirit (and soothing the savage breast), where were security or police,

    There were security guards and police, but it's hard for them to work in a huge stage-front crowd like this. You rely on the decency of people around you. I suppose the munters were going to be there at Hermitude, but it's still vile and depressing.

    or even a basic terms and conditions of entry – ‘thou shalt not hassle or abuse other attendees without being evicted’ – the modern NZ is becoming an uglier place, day by day…

    I feel acutely aware that upthread I praised the mood of the crowd. And I wasn't wrong – in general, it was really nice. There were lots of women in the crowd (and for that matter, on stage) having a great, safe time.

    I'm willing to bet the morons who bullied Jean and her friend looked quite like the yobs who gatecrashed Kim Vinnell's live cross. She went and confronted them yesterday, and they turned out to be sad clowns who seemed proud of having preloaded heavily on some sort vile alcopops. Booze has a lot to answer for.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report Reply

  • Jean Hughes, in reply to Russell Brown,

    oh yes I agree Russell - the vibe was generally and mainly as good as it ever was - I enjoy seeing people enjoying themselves. And yes no security could not have got to these guys - hey even those people 2 or three away would have had no idea what was going on - it is a tight bunch down the front.
    I was astounded that they would pick on older women in such a sexual way - we even asked them if they treated their mother and grandmother this way - and I am sorry to say they didn't look that ashamed. I think they are a product of a political leadership that puts down women and cracks cheap bullying comments at will.
    They were well fuelled and one offered us weed, mda etc so that explained a lot. I just wish it hadn't happened and hope they didn't pick on younger women at their first big exciting day out. I don't care how sorry they were the day after - the fact they still act like that in any state means they have the nastiness inside them.
    I saw another couple of guys at random throughout the day - their first Laneways and they were sailing very very high at East India Youth - laughing, happy, smiley, gorgeous young lads - and still just as bouncy and happy when I last saw them at the end of Grimes - thats the sort of fueling effects I like.

    Mangere • Since Nov 2006 • 88 posts Report Reply

  • llew40,

    Ah, sorry to hear about the rude munters Jean. I didnt see any bad vibes at all so I do hope they were in the very tiny minority (to go with their very tiny outlook on life).

    We met and yarned happily with a number of lovely strangers who were all having a good day and seemed to have no problems with grey hair :).

    Have to admit to feeling slightly ..... meh, about this year's Laneway. I've been lucky to attend all of them to date, and this felt like the first year where a lot of the acts have been here before, and it all contributed to my slightly jaded (and somewhat sun-baked) feeling of deja-vu.

    I was there pretty early so faded late in the piece (I wanted to see Leisure - who were excellent, but wish they were on a little later in the day so I could have employed a bit more of the Russell Brown tactical timing tip). Also liked East India Youth (some banging tunes that wouldn't have been out of place late at night on a crowded dance floor), Beachhouse (excellent sun-down set), HDU (thumping industrial Dunedin sounds) and Vince Staples (stonking hip-hop although his police-baiting started to sound a little tiresome).

    Liked the Rumpus Room set-up, as well as the more open Thunder Dome. The Craft Beer bar was also a very welcome new addition!

    All in all, I'll be back next year to see it's new incarnation ......

    Since Nov 2012 • 140 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Jean Hughes,

    I saw another couple of guys at random throughout the day – their first Laneways and they were sailing very very high at East India Youth – laughing, happy, smiley, gorgeous young lads – and still just as bouncy and happy when I last saw them at the end of Grimes – thats the sort of fueling effects I like.

    Yes – there were thousands of happy, high-as-kites people there.

    Jean, I feel weirdly guilty about this, having highlighted your excellent expectations for the day in the post above. Doesn't make sense, I know, but I do.

    I've written a post about it, with some more reports of such incidents yet to come in. We have to stop this.

    In the meantime, Jean, I have two complimentary tickets to Auckland City Limits for you. And this time, I will get you into the industry-wanker bar :-)

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report Reply

  • John Klouwens, in reply to Jean Hughes,

    Laneway 25 year old audience is looking for the best tunes in the world. Laneway 50 year old audience has 25 years of discovering them. What a special mix of people.
    99.9% of the Laneway audience is there for the music. Its a fantastic combination of these age groups plus above and below birth dates. They are caring, creative, attentive and interesting. Laneway is a Festival for grown ups.
    Unfortunately .01% of the audience is attracted to the crowd. They target events to simply be there and cause a nuisance. Don't let this bozo element affect your judgement.
    I am sure that more will be done by all event organisers in future to be vigilant toward this rogue element.

    Dunedin • Since Feb 2016 • 1 posts Report Reply

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