In the sunny sunshine of the giant field that was the meadows at the University of Canberra last Sunday, a thousand strong crowd of mini-hipster types jumped for joy at a bedazzling array of rock-stars strutting their stuff in the grandest show the Capital has ever seen.
Lights shining, amps blaring, guitars screaming, rappers fist pumping and massive ball of spew-making-ride bouncing, the Groovin the Moo travelling circus was in town and anyone who is anyone wanted a look-see.
Hello regional festival we love you please come back.
The crazy kids of Canberra were decked out in skinny jeans, cow-suits, pirate hats and sunnies with the teenagers rocking denim shorts/dunlop volley/op shop handbag uniforms – glugging down soft drink laced with bootleg vodka from plastic bottles and scoffing greasy burgers while they danced-swayed-kicked-pranced-passed-out-lay-down-squatted-moshed and by the look of things all and sundry were having a delightful time (EVEN THE SECURITY GUARDS WERE TAPPING THEIR FEET!).
Being the fashionable late types, we “CityNews” folk didn’t rock up till Aussie hip hop legends Muph and Plutonic had hit the stage – but my-oh-my weren’t they solid for the middle of the afternoon?
Apologies for not visiting the dance/hip hop tent -Moolin Rouge – but there was about three seconds between each band. A very tight festival organised to the finest detail.
Kisschasey got the crowd going, arms pumping while Lisa Mitchell yanked the tears from the red lipsticked eye sockets of a hundred messy haired indie girls whose boyfriends were hanging out for British India – and let’s face it, British India were pretty damn good what with the Nirvana cover they did and all.
Melbourne’s Miami Horror were a massive highlight, with the dance-floor (read muddy lawn in front of the stage) cutting sick under the power of their sweet electro beat, before American indie-rock outfit Spoon took over with some high quality tunes from their recent release Transferance.
Canadian twins Tegan and Sarah were beautiful, production perfect. THEY SOUND JUST LIKE THE CD.
Grinspoon looked and sounded as they have at every festivial I have ever been to in my decade of festival going in four Australian capital cities. Newsflash: Grinspoon now play more than when actually famous. But I mean, they’re reliable Aussie rock, they sound good and they’re perfect filler when you want to give the kids some songs they know all the words to. Familiar, I believe the word is.
Empire of the Sun were visually spectacular, oh the costumes! The dancers! The lights! Who cares about the music when you have space suited glittering guitarists stomping their feet in synch?? No one was paying any attention to silly old Luke Steele in his American Indian headwear, it was all about chicks in the aluminum foil and cardboard hats. Playschool has outdone itself this time.
Next up, indie-pop heros Vampire Weekend, were, quite simply, fabulous. Their performance was straight down the line joy. Hoorah. It was soul destroying when they left the stage. An ironically glasses wearing man in a tweed cardigan next to me sobbed hysterically and beat his overpriced can of G&T against his pencil thin moustache.
Finally Silverchair. Oh yes. Daniel Johns. He might be a twat, but if he is, he’s our twat and so so talented. While no one likes their new stuff (because it’s pretentious rubbish) hearing “Israel’s Son” live is just something special. The crowd went wild, even if they were three when Frogstomp came out. It was grungy wonderful madness and the mosh pit was indeed the place to be… also headbanging is the way festivals should be completed.
“FREAK”. They finished on “Freak”. It was fantastic.
GTM 2011? We hope so.