My third consecutive day of shows was also my first Big Day Out experience. The weather behaved…it was cloudy a good chunk of the day which made my body happy and likely the organizers’ minds as well. That said I did emerge with a slight sunburn on my neck, but on the whole not too bad. And you don’t care about that and why should you. Let’s get to music.
The first band of the day for me (did hear a bit of Wolf & Cub but I wasn’t paying attention) was The Grates, a fun band from Brisbane (lead singer pictured above). I had only heard one song of their’s previously but was eager to check them out given their placing on the Top 25 Aussie Band List. I LOVED them. They remind me of a cross between the Unicorns and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and a bunch of smiling kids. I cannot wait to see them again, but it seems like I will have to wait as after the BDO tour they head to England to open a tour for The Go! Team (more on them in a sec). So PLEASE check out The Grates.
It killed me but I left The Grates a bit early because I also really wanted to catch a bit of The Presets set. I would have been pretty pissed if they were crap and I left The Grates to see them, but they were pretty damn good too. Even if I do feel a tad old for that type of “dance” music at times, they seemed to have the crowd going extremely well for 12:30 in the afternoon. The Boiler Room was an awesome spot too! Anyone else check it out?
Then things are blurry. I caught parts of Bit By Bats, Red Riders, Sleater-Kinney, The Subways, Youth Group (YAWN), and probably some others. The next band I really paid attention to was The Go! Team. We were right on the rail for them and they were worth it. All smiles, child-like enthusiasm, and noise The Go! Team played everything I wanted to hear (not TOO hard when you’re still touring your debut). It will be interesting to see how the next record sounds after evolving into a live band over the past couple years.
After The Go! Team I made my way inside the main arena to get ready for the Franz Ferdinand, Iggy and the Stooges, and White Stripes finale. Caught The Living End set as well, but they aren’t really my thing. They did have the crowd singing along though. Franz Ferdinand scored points from me for playing two great songs (“Jacqueline” and “Auf Asche”) off their first album they didn’t play the other night when I saw them. It was pretty cool to see thousands and thousands of people pogoing in time to “Take Me Out.”
Iggy and the Stooges…now I’m not a huge Stooges fan though I always get the impression I should be (but I’m also supposed to like Neutral Milk Hotel and I still don’t). While Iggy looked great for an 80 year old, the band seemed like they were phoning it in. But I was pretty far away so I am not really judging. And that’s all I’ll say. Oh, except the stage invasion was damn cool. Points to Iggy for that. Security must have been crapping themselves.
And finally The White Stripes emerged onstage to play a shortish set. However, in that set they played “Black Jack Davey” (one I’d never heard them do before) and “Party of Special Things To Do” which is not played all that often. The riff in that one was monstrous. The crowd, predictably, seemed mostly there to hear “Seven Nation Army” which was greeted with much joy. The band also played a reworked version of “Fell in Love with a Girl” as well as “Black Math” and others. Not their best show, but still a great way to end the night.
I didn’t actually want that to be the end, but my legs were dying after three straight jet-lagged days of shows and the crowd to get into 2ManyDJs was too much for me. So home I went. And to bed I went. For 12 hours.
Again, more photos here if you like.