Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Sunset Sounds: Day 1

So last week was pretty mad. Not only am I preparing to leave for the States next week, I had to move out of my house on the weekend, leaving little time for pretty much anything really. However, I did get time to head to Sunset Sounds festival for some R&R before I depart. Here is my quick view on some of the performances that I witnessed.

I walked in on the first day to catch the last song of what looked liked a great set from local group DZ. From there, I headed over with my good friend Andy to see the end of what turned out to be a fairly disappointing performance from The Middle East. Despite the large crowded gathered to see them, I felt a distinct lack of engagement. In fact, they looked quite tired.

My small group of friends swung by to see Dappled Cities play at the Hibiscus stage. I’d see Dappled Cities play a few years back and I had found them boring back then. Times have changed though. They put on, what I believe, one of the best sets of any bands at the festival. Guitarist Tim not only rocked his usually high falsetto, but also a mean set of boardshorts. Many of the songs of the latest album “Zounds” were performed to perfection.

Norwegian geek-rockers, Datarock, were creating a storm at the Riverstage, employing their usual brand of fun filled disco-dancing tunes. Every time I see them, I always reflect on the uncanny resemblance between the keyboardist and my friend D. Kelso. I swear to god he is playing in Datarock.

Emiliana Torrini played a soulful set which, in retrospect, was just what I needed considering the number of alcoholic beverages I had consumed during the afternoon. She played the garden stage as the sun was setting, and it was quite enjoyable. I’m not the biggest fan, but I thought she, and her band, played very well. The singles from “Fisherman’s woman” (Heartstopper and Sunny Road) got a good response.

Not really having much to do except to wait for Moby to start, I wandered over to the Riverstage where Hilltops Hoods were playing. I don’t particularly like Hilltop Hoods so it could be expected that I don’t have much positive to say about their set. To me, all their songs sound are made up of the following formula: Song seemingly about “drinking beers” + beats + panpipe sample + frequent yell outs to “DJ Debris” as well as name checking themselves. That said, many people were gyrating like limping baboons, enjoying themselves. So who am I to complain eh?

I had been told Moby always puts on a great show. Though I wasn’t expecting much, I got more out of it than I thought possible, but perhaps less than what I should have believed from the amount of hype he got. He started off well, but his frequent allusions to his own genius soon got tiring. ‘Bodyrock’, ‘Go’ and ‘We’re all Made of Stars’ made the setlist. He did do a cover of ‘Ring of Fire’ and played a punk-song he wrote when he was 17, both that I found more appealing than the rave mania numbers that closed out his set.

With the benefit of hindsight, I should have gone saw Rodrigo y Gabriella whom I’m told were phenomenal. Damn.

Thus ended Sunset Sounds, day one. My thoughts on day two to follow.

No comments: