It was a sunny but chilly Saturday afternoon when this reviewer made his way out to the Evelyn Hotel in Fitzroy for the All-Ages matinee show that Dream On Dreamer were playing. Dream On Dreamer were headlining the all-Melbourne band show, as they were supported by caution:thieves, Chasing Ghosts and Foxblood.
Upon arrival at the venue just before 2pm, there were only a handful of people waiting for doors to open at 2pm; doors didn’t end up opening until just after 2pm however. caution:thieves made their way out onto the stage at just after 2:20pm, although the less than ten people who had arrived at this stage got to see Taylor Douglas (Drums) warming up on stage.
Douglas was joined on stage after a couple of minutes by Nicholas Simonsen, (Vocals), Chris Meekin (Guitar) and Tom Leitch (Bass), who launched into their short but ferocious set; start with Simonsen’s mixture of clean and unclean vocals, then add Meekin’s furious guitar work with Leitch’s stunning 5-string bass that he fingered all throughout the 7 song set. Douglas was really enjoying himself at the back behind his kit, evident by the happiness that was extruding from his face as he pounded away being the cherry on top! The third song of the set was “Homecoming”, which dates back to caution:thieves first album; Simonsen coming out and declaring it to be “sad guy music.” Even though it slowed the tempo of the set down, by no means does it mean that there was any less energy! Newest single “Angels to the End” was the second last song to be played, as caution:thieves walked off stage just before 2:50pm.
Thankfully there wasn’t much time waiting between bands performing today, as Chasing Ghosts walked out on stage just on 3pm; this reviewer was really looking forward to hearing some homegrown punk music, so it was a major surprise to see Jimmy Kyle appearing by himself on stage with just an acoustic guitar! Kyle informed the unfortunately still small crowd that this first song had never been performed live before and boy was it an emotional way to start the set off; the passion, the pain and the hurt that was evident in the vocals was just beautiful. Kyle explained how it was written for a friend who was having issues with his ex-partner and how he never got to see their child.
Kyle’s second song was just as emotionally heavy as it was about youth suicide. He informed the crowd how it was written after he received a dreaded call that stated his younger cousin had attempted to take her life; thankfully she failed in her attempt and has gone on to turn her life around! Kyle went on to explain the closeness of their relationship via the “Arnott’s Biscuit Scale”; you give Arrowroot to those cousins that you don’t like and Tim Tams to the amazing cousins you do like and she was most definitely a Tim Tam cousin. Kyle also gave the small crowd this small gem of advice; “If anyone you know is having a hard time, just listen to them!”
The remaining four songs of Kyle’s set were just as emotional and raw; the third song “Death” was a song that Kyle wrote with Australian singer/musician “Millie Tizzard”, the fourth song “Jane Doe” which was co-written with “Andrew Neufeld” (Comeback Kid) and featured “Marcel Gadicz” (Dream on Dreamer fame) on vocals, is a song that you play to your ex-girlfriend and hope that she picks up the subtle hints within the lyrics. Kyle explained how when he first showed this to his girlfriend at the time, she was too busy gushing over the fact that he had written a song for her instead of actually listening to the lyrics. Kyle graced the stage for approximately 40 emotional and raw minutes, most definitely the hidden gem of the day!
Foxblood graced the stage at just on 4pm and blew the roof off; after the raw and emotional solo acoustic set of Kyle, the performance that Chris Millard (Vocals), Tom Beale (Guitar), Brett Powell (Guitar), Steven Powell (Bass) and Aaron Beale (Drums) was a complete 180 degree turnaround that the only 50 max strong crowd most thoroughly enjoyed. The stage wasn’t big enough for Millard, both Powell brothers and Tom Beale to get all their energy out, so they channelled all the excess energy into their instruments of choice and it lifted their performance to 11! Steven Powell’s bass featured something that this reviewer had NEVER seen before; instead off all the frets being broken up in a straight up and down format, both the higher and lower frets were tilted so that the index/pinky finger could bend more naturally.
Foxblood were high energy from start to finish throughout their six song, thirty minute set; notable mentions include “The Devil, The Dark and The Rain” which is the title track from Foxblood’s newest album, as well as “No Heroes” and “Die Young”; a trip down memory lane for those diehard fans who support the local music scene, as it was the very first single that Foxblood ever released.
Dream On Dreamer graced the stage at 4:50pm to a crowd of less than one hundred people; it was quite disappointing that more people didn’t attend, but that just meant that those who did attend got to enjoy a more intimate show. Marcel Gadacz (Unclean Vocals), Callan Orr (Lead Guitar/Backing Vocals), Zachary Britt (Rhythm Guitar/Clean Vocals), Chris Shaw (Bass) and Dylan Kuiper raised the energy of the room by blasting through a short but frantic thirty minute set that consisted of eight songs in total. Even though it was a small crowd, Dream On Dreamer had the energy of a band that was performing to thousands of people, which just shows how much they enjoy playing together.
The small but intimate crowd had pushed up to right in front of the stage and those who knew the lyrics screamed alongside Gadacz and sang alongside Britt. Unfortunately the set did have a few small technical issues, but nothing that was too major thankfully. The most on-going one turned out to incite laughter from the crowd whenever it happened; the connection that held the cord into Gadacz’s microphone wasn’t the most secure, so on more than one occasion when Gadacz was wrapping it around his hand or neck, it would come disconnected.
Overall, the lack of people attending the matinee show made it a more intimate and enjoyable show for those who did attend, especially with Kyle’s acoustic set being thrown in. Those in attendance were showcased a nice variety of Melbourne home grown talent and that’s what it’s all about at the end of the day!