Took a while to find the venue, as is typical of someone armed with a retro nokia without gps capabilities...after a few nervous loops i waltz in all alternative and shoe-gazing and i'm greeted in a style befitting my absolute obscurity round these parts. I realize im no-one special. . This is, indeed, south of heaven...uh...south of .Melbourne...and north of None Gallery... . "Got a place to stay yet?" a sharp dressed Dan Lewis enquires ..my lack of gypsy smarts is palpable now- I haven't a clue. I have truly left it to the last minute. With an assuring glance I am informed he will jack something up for me, a couch at the very least. This is heartwarming news.
It's 3 in the afternoon in the charming town of Hobart. I'm surrounded by those things I love - stalls packed with obscure cds and tapes, a bar, a stage, lighted spaces, the promise of darkness, the whiff of power-violence. Several acts are lined up - the likes of Cocks Arquette,The Harrison Forward,Aktion Unit,Niko Niko,Drunk Elk,Granpa Abela,Ragtime Frank,PENGUINS,radio cegeste, Crude,
Repellant,Fetish Ritual, Plus special one-off collaborations:Pip Stafford & Evelyn Morris ,Joshua Santospirito & Blair Rideout The Hunter & Georgia LucyPolanyi & DomicileMutterlard & Chrysalis.
Didnt eat. Got drunk on rider. Was truly blown away by Dan Lewis's Aktion Unit. Improvised music, of the wilder variety, this time joined by a vocalist of true dexterity, explorative range and performative magnetism. Her name escapes me presently sorry. Apparently she was a student of improvisation, but to me she had graduated years ago - her vocal control was stunning - rendering the likes of Yoko Ono mute. Stunned was I. The effect lasted well into the night as I soaked up the outpourings of Lucas Abela, other women of shamanic vocal prowess, a band of power electronics enthusiasts (whos technical problems pierced the veil of their anti-musical armoury unfortunately), the super-sensitive radionics and anachronistic sound collage of Radio Cegeste was welcome relief from the whitehouse fans, Cocks Arquette roared like some crazed nutter with a dry sense of humour - Evelyn Morris's athletic drumming was a perfect accompaniment to the all-round brutality, It was all good until I performed and stuck a myki card in between my ass cheeks and took it out and licked it,,my couch offer fervently withdrawn.
Yes the myki system is a digital sham. Yes I 'touch on' when i can, and wipe off sometimes too. But is it worth such desecration? I had to do something to outshine the sexy industro-squalor of Penguins didnt I. Don't think it worked. Think i repulsed my potential hosts instead. Nevermind.
And so i eneded up hobbling around inner city Hobart that night, like a wounded soldier, totally freezing, spewing me ring out, my instruments a frightful burden, waiting for my 5.30am pick up to the airport, told to move on by angry hotel staff ( i attempted to sleep in an ally outside best western) , it was real 'cant wait to tell the boys at work' stuff. Was nice to see the stars a clear as they are in Hobart however. You forget the cosmos is there sometimes. Its there alright. Its deep. Its dark. Its cold and no-one can hear your power-violence.