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The first NSW gig of the September Garage Mahal Tour.

Was intrigued by the stage setup, and even more so when Cam brought out a couple of golden elephants and sat them on either side of the stage. I put my sunglasses within easy reach, as Ben from Klinger warned us that we might need them.... and we did! The rack of lights behind Sean were pretty darn bright. The lights went down and we could hear familiar voices saying "Shh! Shhhh!" over the noise of the crowd. After a few puzzled looks were exchanged, we heard footsteps, a door opening, and a match being struck. All of a sudden the elephants and stage lit up with little bowls of "fire"!! A couple of snaps later, the extremely funky Indian music began and out came the band - they ripped straight into that awfully cool version of Get Set which really got the crowd (and me) going. The set was Get Set, Afterglow, Enemy, Afraid to Fly, How I Got This Way, Happy, Splash, Forest for the Trees, Madrigal/Can You Feel, Rocketship, World's Away, This Time, Saffron, Skin, Creepin' Up Slowly, Wait (encores were Helplessly Hoping, Happiness Without You and Everywhere You Go). The band seemed to have a really good time and they thought the venue was pretty damn cool. I must agree - the sound was nice and clear, and the stage was the perfect size and height for the vertically challenged amongst us!

Highlights of the Night

# Tim Wild putting me on the door :-)
# Putting Tim Wild on the spot when I asked if he remembered my name to put on the door. It's been 3 years guys, c'mon!!
# Seeing the band get in trouble from security for parking the Tarago in the disabled spot outside the door hehehe! And where do you think they parked when they came back for the gig...?
# Saffron. Who can resist that poxy 80's drum machine beat, Jase singing (and dancing to) Pink's Get This Party Started and rollerskating? I have little videos of these moments of merriment, so look out for them soon!
# Wait. I was sooo embarrassed. Not saying any more than that, but I bet if Tim Wild's reading this, he'd be laughing right about now...
# Putting our hands up when Jase asked, "Who here has seen us before?... I know you have!" [pointing at the Crew] Hmm once or twice.
# Being asked afterwards if we were "the groupies". Well technically no - according to Almost Famous we're Band-Aids, because groupies sleep with the band and the roadies - ick! :-P Nonetheless, it's not a common label so we'll just go with yes!
# Getting home at 2am, going to bed at nearly 3am and getting up at 7am for Uni the same morning. Always a nice finishing touch to a great gig :-|

Rating (out of 5 Stars): * * * * and a half. Definitely on my list of favourite gigs.

 

 

 

Took almost three hours to get to St Marys from Wollongong but it turned out to be worth it... BIG TIME!!!! Got my front row position and was slightly disappointed to find that the newly named tackers Delores and Delilah had been moved to the front of the stage! Delilah was right in my way, but she's a real gem so all is forgiven. This was a really fun, let-loose kind of gig, with the guys cracking hilarious rock star poses during Saffron. Can't really remember much else.. for good reason (see below)!

Highlights of the Night

# Saffron. It always will be - for the same reasons as the previous night.
# Watto's "attempt" at a running man (I have a video of that too).
# Tim Wild's rock poses (video again).
# Creepin' Up Slowly. I'll set the scene for you: Jase has been 'exercising' lately, lost weight and gained a killer set of abs... his daks were being held up with electrical tape... he was jumping around quite a bit...nice blue Reg Grundies Jase!
# A post-gig chat with Jase. I can't say what we talked about, but I can tell you that I could've keeled over then and there with what he had to say... that, and the fact that he remembered my name :-o *shock horror!*
# Jase's reaction to seeing Ed's rather suggestive photo for the first time. He ran over to show Watto who said he'd already seen it.
# Hearing those familiar four-word sentences again - "Is this for me?" and "Can I have it?"
# "G'night Mary-Jane!" ...this is a private joke and will NEVER EVER be revealed!!!!

Rating (out of 5 Stars): * * * * * (for pure shock value).

 

 

 

Didn't know I was going until lunchtime that afternoon. And it's a damn good thing we went because it turned out to be one of the best nights of our (young!) lives! One of the Crew called me to say that I had to be at this gig to discuss some serious business with Jase, so I hopped on the train and met my fellow groupie at Hurstville. We began the long drive up to the Central Coast, which was fueled by classic stories and red liquorice, and the fact they were going to surprise the rest of the Crew by turning up unannounced. Surprise them we did. After much jumping around and squealing (we have Barocca to thank for that), we pulled ourselves together and began the waiting process. Klinger were really rockin' out, and I witnessed a totally different side to one of the Crew members' personalities! Also had a piece of ice land infront of me, courtesy of that pesky Jase who was throwing it at one of the Klinger fellas. To cut a long story slightly shorter, here comes the part about nearly dying! Okay maybe I wasn't dying in a literal sense, but I had a bit of a reaction to the incense that was placed right behind my good friend Delilah. Now, one or two sticks I can handle... in fact it's quite nice, however I draw the line at least 20 in a holder directly behind Delilah blowing straight into my face!! Had to keep bending down to get some fresh air, and by the time the second song was done (at least I think it was... it's all a bit of a blur) I was shakin' all over! Tim Wild saw me trying to cover my nose, but instead of moving the stuff he just smiled! Jase did the same but it was more of a laugh... nice guys, huh?! *winks* We were watching and waiting for the sticks to fizzle out and right before they actually did, Jase moved them. Now why he couldn't have done that earlier when he saw me doubled over, I do not know! "Jeez, I didn't think having incense for the Garage Mahal look would bother people that much!" Well, when you're having trouble breathing, your head's spinning and your hands are shaking, I think it does! From what I can remember (as I said, the first half was a blur) the gig was much the same as the last two, but I was pretty stoked when I noticed Jase look down at me and smile at the end of World's Away. He's a smart cookie.

Highlights of the Night

# Surprising the Crew.
# Jase flashing his pearly whites at me after World's Away. If you can't figure out why I find this significant, take a look at the name of my website.
# Wait. Seeing T-A-X-I-R-I-D-E being spelt out on the rack of lights behind Sean. A repeat performance from me and Tim noticing it again.... God, when will the embarrassment end?!
# The security ladies ;)
# Discussing business with Jase after the gig, and then watching him sign a bald guy's head.
# The antics outside with the Tarago; Jase waving like a madman from the front and cheering while we assembled for a Crew shot, hence some rather happy expressions on our faces.
# Being told that we were the most beautiful girls some fellas had ever seen. We'll just forget the fact that these guys appeared to be pretty tanked ;)
# Jumping in the little red car and heading down to the petrol station for a bite to eat. Who should also be there but... Taxiride. I won't say what happened next but I can assure you it was f*$king hilarious.
# As we were walking out to the car after getting food, we heard a slight crash... a member of the crew had dropped a bottle of Coke in full view of the Tarago!! We were all pissing ourselves laughing, including Jase - he came over and gave her a nice comforting hug :). I literally can't stop laughing while I type this!!
# Being high-beamed by the band.
# Seeing Jase hang out the window screaming while Andy was overtaking us.
# Overtaking Andy... Andy overtaking us... it went on! I tell you, it's gonna be hard to top that night...

Rating (out of 5): * * * * and three quarters (they lose a quarter for nearly killing me with incense).

 

 

 

Hooray! It only took 10 minutes from home to get to the venue. While we were waiting at the doors, I saw a fella with a handful of HIGTW singles. I simply said, "Ooh singles", and one was thrust upon myself with such velocity that I now have a small bruise on my arm :\. Our ears were assaulted twice with incessant dance music and the support band, Hang Seng. I really can't think of many remarkable things about this gig. It was comparatively flat and dry, with little interaction and none of the many funny moments that occurred during the previous round of gigs. Okaaay, the cat fight between a couple of girls during the encore was amusing but apart from that, can't say I was blown away by this one. After the show and doing a little business with Jase, I asked him what the go was, and it turns out that they are a "serious rock band" now. If I wanted to see the funny stuff I'd have to come to the Taxiride Comedy Show instead. I went on to ask him to put on a better show the next day at the Hunter Valley... a little forward I know, but I think he got my drift when I told him how much it was costing me....!

Highlights of the Night

# None during the gig. Most of the highlights occurred after the gig, except maybe having Jase pretending to drag on a joint for the camera, but it was nice to see where Jase's loyalties lie when confronted with the choice of the talking to members of the crew or signing CDs for 'normal people...Jase: "Who do I pick? [looks back and forth between us and them, picks us]... They've been with us for 5 years!" [high five + hug] Me: "Yeah that's loyalty for ya" [bows down as if to worship the man] Jase: "That's more like it!" 5 years? I'll go with that ;)
# Ed and I fighting over our websites: Ed to Jase: "I have a website too!" Jase: "Do you? Who's is better?" Both of us: "Mine!" Jase: "Okay, well who's is more concise?" Both: "Uh-hem, mine!"... "No, mine!" Me: "Mine's got over 170 live photos on it! The bigger the better!" [laughs]
# Convo with Tim Wild. I didn't get to talk to him inside but he came out to the van just as we were leaving. We chatted for a little while about all sorts of groovy things until we were interrupted.

Rating: * *. Being a serious rock band = très boring.

 

 

 

Had to drag myself out of bed at the ungodly hour of 6am so I could pack and meet in time to leave for the long drive from Wollongong to the Hunter Valley (about 5 hours). I forgot most of the essential things like toothpaste, hair goo, and extra clothes, but I did remember those little comforts that one needs when venturing out into the great outdoors, such as a blanket (which came in useful later on), food and water. After a few stops and detours, we made it to our overly priced digs (but hey, what can you do in a touristy place?) at about 1.30pm. We had a bit of a rest, made ourselves at home (see photo) and got ready to leave for the Bimbadgen Estate. It was an interesting 20 minute journey, taking our lives into our hands whilst driving over a rickety bridge that was like something out of a movie, and those dirt roads unheard of in our usual habitat. We made it to the winery intact, christened the car (the bottom line says, "think about ooh" - guess who did that? ;)), headed in and set up camp down the front. One deceased spider later, we watched the impressive Richard Clapton, then rushed to the front for Taxiride. Took a while to set up, but once they came out the crowd started to get excited and filed towards the front of the green. There was a fight behind me which was kind of distracting but to be expected I guess when there are kids around. Anyways, my ribbings about the drabness of the previous night paid off, as Jase kept coming over and playing up to us, as if to do this --> :-P. At least I got results ;-) The vibe was unbelievable, very cool indeed. Watto was a crack-up - his setup was just not happening. Unfortunately they didn't do an encore, and they were the only act not to so that was disappointing, not only for us but the 'normal' people mentioned it too. We kept up tradition (sorry guys) and headed over to the backstage bit, but there were swarms of people there, all trying to get a piece of Jase and Watto. I called out, "Hey Jase, that was much better!" - he smiled. Then he mentioned that he wanted to go in because he was cold. Being the good Samaritan that Ed is, she put my blanket around Jase and said that he could stay because he's warm now. He thanked her for the thought but he had to have photos taken. Luckily I had Ed's camera and was able (with one hand mind you) take that shot. In the original photo you can see white dog hair all over the blanket, so apologies if your shirt was covered in them ;-) Jase and Watto left, and we went to do a few things, sat and watched a bit of Tim Finn, then started to head up the hill to get some food. Taxiride (sans Tim) were coming out at the same time, and we had a cool chat with Watto. They left for Sydney not long after.

Highlights of the Night

# Probably Jase's playing up to us and really getting into the spirit of things.
# Watto. He's just a funny fella and nice to talk to. A lady asked him for a light and I don't think she knew who he was. I pretended that I didn't know either and Watto didn't let on... it was all quite bizarre, especially when she twigged and thought I was "with the band" :-\
# Jase's reaction to the blankie.

Rating: * * * . Would've been better if they ended it rocking out in the encore.

 

 

 

This has to be the most chilled-out gig I've been to. I heard from one of the lighting guys at the club that they'd only sold 160 tickets - apparently only enough for two front rows! (not sure about that). The real deal was that Taxiride were trying to get out of it but couldn't, and there was bugger-all promotion so I guess people didn't really know about it. Anyways, I watched soundcheck and spent some time with one of the fellas - the outcome was extremely cool but I can't say anymore than that, even though I'm dying to tell everyone! David Franj was really good, and I'm looking forward to seeing him again soon. Very talented young man, that one! Taxiride's set kicked off with one of my favourites, Enemy, and I was so happy that World's Away was back in the set. Something very nice happened during the song, but again, I'm going to keep it to myself. Jase proclaimed that this was the worst gig ever, but I didn't think it was at all. I liked it for it's 'laidbackness', and the fun element had returned (hurrah!!). After the show was a lot of fun for me too. I heard about Jase's plans for a couple of new living props for the next tour, but I fear that they could make a really big mess and not appreciate being painted gold. Oh, and let me just say that Jase has a powerful push on him since he's been 'exercising' ;-) No 'highlights of the night' - not that there weren't any - there were tonnes, but I'm keeping them to myself!

Rating: * * * * * . Yep, you made it! Top marks for a very special and successful night. Thank you Jase and Tim Wild!

 

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