Saturday, December 04, 2004

GoldenAxe, Disasteradio, Cortina and the Coolies

(Arc Cafe, 13 November)

Wow, time has been flying by. The main reason I went along to this gig was to see, once again, the Cortinas. I first heard them when the did an outdoor gig on concourse at Massey - most of my mates thought they were just making a hideous racket and stayed away as much as they could, but I was curious as to what they were doing. Since then, I've seen them several times, generally at Harvesters but most recently at the Crown.

But before they came on, I had the experiences of GoldenAxe and Disasteradio, much talked about in certain circles. I have to say that I was less than captivated. GoldenAxe are a couple of guys with junky keyboards, equipment carried in baby prams festooned with christmas lights, they wear (and sing behind) gasmasks. Oh, plus they had Disasteradio playing an old school arcade game (I think it was Gyrus) - a space-shoot-em-up which generates lots of electronic sounds - these were fed into the sound mix. They had quite a few up and grooving to their sounds, but I sat it out. Same with Disasteradio - he had a proper keyboard from which he produced a multitude of sounds. Both were good at what they were doing, it just wasn't my bag.

I did get into a cool conversation with someone I met on the night, Kate. Its nice to talk with a woman who is full of ideas and information and smartness and she had plenty of all three.

Cortina did their thing - they keep polishing their act every time I see them, even do all their gigs sober these days. They call what they do "space metal", but there's a fair amount of political commentary involved as well as futuristic songs. I don't know - its nice that they're getting more professional, but the joy of Cortina is in their manic energy, they used to do a hugely mixed up orgiastic cover of Sharon O'Neill's "Maxine" which no longer fits.

The night finished with the Coolies, a much talked about band from Auckland. The people I was with were quite pessimistic, thinking it was going to be an Auckland thing, that the band would be crap and over-hyped. At this point, I started wondering if I was going mad, as I was convinced that the Coolies had already played Dunedin this year and been bloody good (except maybe for the drunken mid-afternoon posturing on the Radio One balcony) but no one knew what I was talking about. Maybe I didn't? [Googling has revealed that the Coolies played the Crown as part of the Onefest, along with Dick the Phone.]

As soon as they started, I was dancing involuntarily, and didn't stop until they had. It seemed to me that they were only on stage for like five minutes but I was assured it was at least 30. I have no idea what they sang about, hardly even any idea what they sounded like, but shit they were tight, with lots of energy and, as everyone was saying afterwards, brilliant drumming - that'd be what had me going.


Blogger Jessie said...

Yeah! Go the Coolies! I think their drummer is ace too.

1:04 PM  

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