Saturday 28 June @ The Fishbowl, Newcastle
You’re fucking kidding me, right? Three of Australia’s greatest bands in one house party? You’re fucking joking, right? That shit doesn’t exist in reality, does it? And yet, after a week of coughing up my lungs, and too much Codral, I found myself in Newy for the first time in my life, with a crudely drawn cock on one hand, and a sixie of South Korea’s finest brew in the other.
TV Colours are already blasting through a set off their debut album, with killer cuts like ‘Beverly’ ringing out onto the otherwise quiet Newcastle streets. These songs are Husker Du shredded down to Canberra size, and let loose in the Australian landscape. There’s probably nothing more beautiful than watching Robin and co. deliver with such confidence. Having seen TV Colours a half dozen times, its insane to see how the band has developed from being kind of sloppy and withdrawn, to being a hurricane of guitar shredding and explosiveness. In Newcastle, with only a hundred people in witness, TV Colours executed one of their best sets. As ‘Dark Days Against the Fade’ and ‘Bad Dreams’ rounded out the set, it’d be fair to say that everyone was fairly fucking stoked to see TV Colours play one of their finest shows.
After ‘Purple Skies, Toxic River’ had finished, Newy’s finest hit the stages. Kat and Leroy, aka The Gooch Palms are well-documented as one of Australia’s greatest current bands to see live. There will be sweat, there will be nudity, and there will be a cover of Twisted Sister’s ‘We’re Not Gonna Take It’.
The Goochies fuckin’ rule, and they were in top form. Sure, there were a couple technical issues, but that’s to be expected when you’re in a thronging crowd at a house party, in a city where there isn’t a million amazing gigs every week. When a show comes along this good, Newcastle folk don’t hold back, and they show no mercy. Neither did Leroy-a couple songs in, and his signature nudity was proudly on display, and his sweaty arse covered the faces of the front row. ‘Hunter Street Mall’, ‘You’ and ‘We Get By’ were taken and happily ravaged by the hometown crowd, and with this advantage, the usual Gooch Palms shenanigans went into hyperspeed.
Finally, the house party hits its finale-Straight Arrows. Sydney’s finest wasted no time in laying waste to the crowd’s depleted energy. Straight Arrows don’t give a shit if you’re running low on fumes, you are going to party, and you are going to party hard. Although the toilet paper was limited this time around, the good times were still in full swing, as Straight Arrows tore through songs harder than Ivan Milat tore into naive backpackers. With cuts off both their debut and sophomore getting the sweaty, adoring treatment, Straight Arrows pulverised eyes and ears in the Fishbowl, ensuring that more people went home deaf and happy than not. The set, which included favourites like ‘Magic Sceptre’, ‘Something Happens’ and recent gut-churner, foot-stomper ‘Petrified’, managed to pulverise all five senses, and occasionally the sixth one.
I left the Fishbowl, drenched in a stench on par with a skunk dipped in rancid feces, and with a Dinosar Jr. t-shirt wetter than a nun at a porn shoot, to sleep in a Mini Cooper in the streets of Newcastle. Sure, my back was more cramped than an 80 year old arthritis patient, and sure, I froze my nipples off. But the fact that I had just witnessed three of Australia’s best bands at a house party in bloody Newcastle. Fuckin’ ripper of a Saturday night, if I don’t say so myself.