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[Review] Henry Rollins @ Hamer Hall, Melbourne 24/06/2023

Review By Noah Redfern

Author, traveller, storyteller and punk legend Henry Rollins is a storyteller at heart. Quite possibly the world’s most well-travelled rock star, and literally a man who will never stop moving, Rollins is a sight for sore eyes in a world of stagnant, aging stars and egos that collapse under their own weight.

The Washington DC native brought his Good For You speaking tour to Melbourne on Saturday night at the glorious Hamer Hall. For almost two and a half hours, we were treated to a non-stop thrill ride of off kilter talers, semi deranged non sequiturs and trials of the mind and soul.

“I’m going to try to fit an extra twenty seconds into every minute tonight” Henry told us almost immediately after hitting the stage, “otherwise you’d be stuck here for four or five hours”.

For those who aren’t familiar, Henry Rollins rose to prominence in the 1980s as the fourth and most prominent singer of the hardcore punk rock band Black Flag. Leaving the band in 1986, Rollins jumped at every creative opportunity given – going on to be something of a renaissance man. Becoming an author, spoken word artist, actor and activist, Rollins has lived more in one lifetime than most men could in a dozen.

Fans of Rollins’ signature brand of word salad were overjoyed – the ten-laughs-a-minute brutality of wordplay demanded constant attention. Never taking a breath, never taking a sip of water, the show just kept going at am almost exhaustive rate, yet I could never lose interest or become bored. Henry would sometimes pause a story to promise us it would make it to a catharsis just when it seemed completely off the rails. There was no doubt that Henry’s style is nothing if not charming.

Never begging for applause, Henry would earn it every time. Weaving various stories together and delivering a wider message of optimistic nihilism, we learned of Henry’s life. His youth in Washington DC, abusive parents and finding solace in friendship and punk rock. But these stories weren’t all lessons and heavy topics – every tangent was packed with humourous observations.

One memorable moment told us of his paranoia of a home invasion – and his eventual respect for his potential stalker, while another told us of his detached relationship with death, and of the ashes of his alcoholic mother he forgot he left in his car before departing his home in Nashville last November for this extended tour. Finding the humour in the darkness, searching for the light in the horror, Henry rose through that sickness and strangeness of today seeking positivity, hilarity and joy.

A true one-in-a-billion character, and a great example for men of today. A first glance, one might assume Henry to be a world of machoism and toxic masculinity. With his muscular figure, tattoos and almost military attitude, you’d be right to think so of the sixty-two year old.

Upon listening to the man speak and share, you’ll learn that Henry is the shining example of what men, in particular aging men should be. Reminding the older generations that it is okay to step aside and let the youth take the reins. Reminding us all that empathy, love and positivity can prevail when we let it.

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[Review] Overmono @ Northcote Theatre, Melbourne 17/03/2023

Fresh off their amazing performance at Pitch Music and Arts Festival in Victoria’s Grampian plains, Welch electronic duo Overmono debuted in Naarm/Melbourne last night at Northcote Theatre. Brothers Tom and Ed Russell came together as Overmono in 2015, dropping their first EP under the name in 2016. With a stream of hit singles and EPs under their belt, the duo is primed to drop their first full-length album this may with Good Lies.

As it was my first time visiting the Northcote Theatre, I was keen to check out the venue and see what it had to offer. Featuring two accessible levels with a bar on each floor and a balcony watching over High Street, the theatre was like an old town hall refurbished like a giant nightclub suitable for the parties of the future. I’m keen to return for another gig as it definitely had a vibe I could get behind.

Opening for Overmono was Naarm based producer Kia combined shades of IDM, techno and trance, weaving together musical narratives that have granted them recognition from local and international labels. Lining up shows in Amsterdam, Norway and more later in the year, Kia is a name to be watched in the electronic scene, even with just a single track released on Spotify.

Next, we were blessed with the sounds and rhythms of Mparntwe/Alice Springs producer RONA. Featuring soundscapes that blend the background of country and place with emotionally packed synth melodies reminiscent of desert life mixed with club euphoria, RONA mixed in a good dose of drum and bass rhythm for good measure to get the energy flowing and the crowd moving.

Hitting the stage later in the evening, Overmono delivered a packed set of non-stop ragers. Combining intimate vocal samples, Kid-A-esque pad synths and booming two-step beats, the duo mixed between older material and key new album tracks with a focus on continuity. A track would slowly morph into another, with the vocal chop slowly coming into focus from the next track, and the audience screaming in delight in response. The push and pull created by the build towards catharsis acted as a brilliant narrative for the hour and a half DJ set.

The Welsh duo clearly have a love for dogs, with Dobermans being a staple of their new album art and tour imagery. Glitched out visuals of the dogs cuddling, fighting and running glowed on screen behind the DJs, with their slow-motion running acting as a counter to the fast grooves moving our feet.

Favourite tracks included Bby, Is U, So U Know, Bone Mics and their fantastic remix of For Those I Love’s anthem I Have a Love. Dancing to Overmono is a blissful feeling, like a rave on a cool summer night where the vibe is just right, and the company is perfect.

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[Review] Beach Bunny @ Croxton Hotel, Melbourne 17/03/2023

On Friday night, I was blessed to finally catch American indie rock band Beach Bunny live. Formed in 2015 in Chicago, Illinois and led by Lili Trifilio, Beach Bunny rose to fame in 2020 for their viral Tik Tok hit Cloud 9. But more than just a one hit wonder though, the band produced a set of sing-along emo beach-pop rock n’ roll with fantastic stage presence.

Opening for them were Brisbane natives VOIID. Reminiscent of classic alt-rock and grunge bands like Hole and L7, VOIID rocked almost too hard for an opening band. Using the classic light and dark, soft and heavy contrast of their forbearers, they sang songs of anti-depressant ecstasy in Lexapro, and heaven in a green room in Hell. Lead singer Anji Greenwood weaves tales of love, hate and joy with her all-femme bandmates. High energy was present the whole set. I can’t wait to see what their debut album will look like when it finally drops.

Taking the stage to a packed bandroom filled with teens and twenty-somethings, Beach Bunny opened with their most recent single, 2022’s Weeds, off their new album Emotional Creature. Featuring fun pop-rock riffs and singalong moments galore, the set was packed with highlights.

The mega hit Prom Queen acted as a bridging point of the set, with singer Lili Trifilio announcing afterward that “now we’re going to play some more emo ones, if that’s okay” from there we jammed through fantastic album cuts like Love Sick, Oxygen and my favourite track April, before tearing back into the bangers again.

Rounding off the set with the hits of Sports, Nice Guys and the smash hit Cloud 9, which had the best singalong of the whole night, the show was everything from raw teen angst to forgiveness and euphoria. “When he loves me, I feel like I’m floating.”

With a fantastic encore of the awesome two-pronged medley track Painkiller, featuring an amazing change-up in the second wind of the song, Beach Bunny made for a great live show and a fantastic night out of singing, dancing and moshing.

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[Review] Drugdealer @ Corner Hotel, Melbourne 09/03/2023

The enigma that is Drugdealer, is a true ode to the gems of the 1970s. The brainchild of Los Angeles-based multi-instrumentalist and composer Michael Collins. I was a fan of Collins previous project Silk Rhodes, with it’s focus on groovy delicate soul, and was extremely keen to catch the larger folk rock end of his mind in Drugdealer. The Corner Hotel, a classic venue in Richmond, was packed with Lennon-esq young men on Thursday night, eager to step back to the seventies for a night of classic yacht rock and groovy balladry.

One could accidentally assume Drugdealer to be peers of Steely Dan, The Doobie Brothers, Looking Glass or Bill Withers, but you’d be surprised to find release dates in the mid to late 2010s. And the best part of this: the band knows it, and we’re all invited to be in on the joke. This made for a night that was equally musically joyous and hilarious.

Opening for the band was Tex Crick, an Aussie singer-songwriter and keyboard player, and recent entry to Mac Demarco’s aptly titled record label Mac’s Record Label. He warmed us up with soft electric piano ballads, backed with a simple groovy drum machine, and a few friendly guitar lines from his single bandmate. Key tracks Peaches & Cream and Here We Go led the tight set, helping the packed crowd wind down and prepare for the laid-back evening.

With curtains closed, a bizarre news report announced the beginning of Drugdealer’s set. This described a recent controversy that apparently the band had run over a pack of quokkas while escaping a previous gig, which was allegedly only the most recent crime our stars had perpetrated. This was of course, just the first of many strange jokes to come.

The curtains parted, and Michael Collins welcomed us to the Drugdealer show. He told us this was his first time in Japan, “so Kawaii”, and that it was pleasant to be around such a simple people. This set the tone for what was a constant back and forth of true musicianship contrasted with bizarre humour for the following hour.

Largely playing keys and some guitar, Collins and bandmate Sasha Winn shared lead vocal duties, taking turns to play through the set, but the jokes were all Collins. He introduced us to the song Mad World, which was of course actually the hit Madison, the opener of their recent 2022 record Hiding In Plain Sight. Even namedropping controversial Aussie radio station Triple J during another track, no opportunity for goofiness was missed.

The tight engineering of the seventies drums on the records was not missed in the live setting, with just as much dry punchiness heard, and not a beat was out of the pocket. The guitarists and bassist grooved along to the beat, and our singers rode the waves with soft sweet melodies.

Highlights of the set included The End Of Comedy, Suddenly and Hard Dreaming Man, but my favourite track was of course Honey from the 2019 album Raw Honey. Such beautiful harmonies and vocal lines were not missed in the live rendition.

While the band is certainly self-aware of their throwback and potentially dad-rock tendencies, don’t let them sell themselves short – they’re a killer live band, with a set of gorgeous groovy rockers sure to get you dancing and smiling any day of the week.

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[Review] Lorde @ Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Melbourne 10/03/2023

Heading back up the hill yet again to Sidney Myer Music Bowl for another emotionally charged evening was not what I expected to be doing just less than a week after Bon Iver’s amazing set, but there I was. Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O’Connor, the Aotearoa/New Zealand born musician known to the world as Lorde, was here finally for her rescheduled half decade return to Naarm/Melbourne. I was lucky enough to catch her last time she was in town too, at the same venue, and I can happily say that she’s taking her live performance to the next level.

Opening for Lorde was MUNA, an LA-based indie pop three piece, known for their collaborations with the likes of The Knocks and Phoebe Bridgers. They delivered fun summer-pop, a perfect addition to Lorde’s Solar Power Tour. A fiery stage presence was led by lead singer/songwriter Katie Gavin, dancing across the stage and wooing the audience with sing-along moments. Favourite songs included Silk Chiffon, What I Want and Home By Now.

After our supports left the stage, the crowd was in a frenzy, having already exploded into waves of cheers every time anything remotely like Lorde moved around behind the curtain. The audience was full of old and new fans, young and not-so-young. Fans all three eras of Lorde’s career were clearly on display: the old Pure Heroine fans, the millennials and Tumblr kids, the Melodrama girlies, with their love of bisexual lighting and coming of age energy, and the Solar Power groovers, ready to ride the wave of an endless summer.

Opening with Leader of a New Regime, the dynamic slow burner deep cut from the most recent record, 2021’s Solar Power, Lorde introduced us to The Solar Power Tour. But of course, she wasn’t here to divide her fans, so immediately after this we were blessed with the back-to-back cuts of Homemade Dynamite, and Buzzcut Season. Dynamite was a true banger and crowd pleaser, but Buzzcut Season reminded me of days long ago, listening to Lorde’s debut on a road trip with my family, pondering what future laid in store for me when I finally grew up. These themes of aging, self-exploration and heartbreak became clearer than ever, hearing her full repertoire on display.

The stagecraft on display was captivating, with a long staircase in the centre of the stage, leaning against what appeared to be a glowing sun. This staircase would rotate throughout the show, sometimes having Ella climb up during heavier emotional moments. When the fantastic Liability, off 2017’s Melodrama played, she sat halfway up and told us stories for a few minutes before the song properly began, speaking softly over the repeated piano intro. She told us of how she’d finally fallen in love with our city, how she’d walked the streets and seen the spirit that guides us all. She then reminisced about the importance of the song, and the love she’s felt seeing how connected so many people have felt to it. A true tale of rejection, and coming to terms with one’s own instability, that’s become an anthem to so many people, especially those who feel left behind from the world around them.

During the track Stoned at the Nail Salon one line stood out to me and resonated heavily with the whole show. “Cause all the music you loved at sixteen, you’ll grow out of, and all the times they will change it’ll all come around”. Lorde’s music transcends these rules, as shown by the demographic present. It just keeps coming back again and again, and to be listening to songs, some written when she was just fifteen, and still resonating in new ways, that deserves a legacy.

Rounding out the set with many tracks off the new album, including Hard Feelings, California and Oceanic Feeling, the only new track I missed was Mood Ring, which did leave me a little disappointed, but I was more than happy to have this compensated by the sheer volume of classics from the previous albums. These included Green Light, Perfect Places, Tennis Court, the amazing Ribs and a victorious encore of Royals and Team. Lorde might be “Kinda over being told to throw my hands up in the air” but we were not. The energy and maturity of the performance was a lifetime ahead of my last time catching the superstar, and I’m so excited to see what she has in store for us next time she visits.

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[Review] Bon Iver @ Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Melbourne 4/02/2023

Bon Iver, the indie folk band and cultural darling led by Wisconsin native Justin Vernon, is a perfect example of change. Good artists are consistent, but great artists grow. On Saturday night at the Bowl, we were blessed with a career spanning, genre defying setlist full of powerful beauty.

Sidney Myer was full of eager fans by the time I arrived, patiently waiting to experience the serenade of love and pain that is Bon Iver. Many fans packed the grass area, with picnic rugs, chairs and plenty of cuddles. The energy was warm and compassionate, a harmony with the music to come.

Joining Bon Iver was the Sydney singer-songwriter and lush electronica artist Sophie Payten, performing under the name Gordi. A perfect match to the headliners energy, Gordi mixed elements of folk guitar balladry with spacey loops of modular synthesis and delicate self-harmony. Beautiful tracks that highlighted the set included Extraordinary Life and Way I Go. It is truly rare to experience a keenly picked match such as these two artists.

Taking the stage to a packed crowd, the main act begun. Bon Iver opened with Lump Sum, the second track from their 2008 debut album For Emma, Forever Ago. The early fusion of a low pulsing kick under the layered delicate vocals and strained acoustic guitar represents all that was and will be of the project, with the focus on memory, love, pain, beauty and peace. This defining album, which was written and recorded in isolation, puts the key themes on display.

Other highlights of the set included the lovely crowd pleaser of Hey Ma, U (Man Like), Towers and 10 d E A T h b R E a s T  , some of the more modern classics of the discography. The true wonders were the classic tracks, Re: Stacks and Skinny Love. Re: Stacks was a song that reminded me of lost love long ago, and the pain of forgiveness, which took all so long to earn. Skinny Love, being Bon Iver’s best known song, deserved to be played, but was expected to be breezed over as the hit that must be played so the artist can focus on the deep cuts. Instead, this rendition of the classic track was so deeply, deeply affecting, that I could feel the pure passion of the full bowl with every breath. The outro and coda of “My, my my” was a fantastic sing-along moment for a crowd of romantics.

The band of course was all multi-instrumentalists. Seven members, featuring switches between acoustic and electric guitars, bass and keys, along with saxophone, and two drummers filled in the sound of future folk that Bon Iver so well defined within the early 2010s. The powerful backing of the drums added a weight to the softer songs that somehow didn’t overpower the minimalism but instead reinforced the simplicity where needed. Moments in my favourite track Holocene were true masters of sound mixing, with one drummer playing soft off beat rimshots while the other balances sixteenth-note shakers and kick patterns. True musicianship at work.

Ending the set after Holocene, the band returned for a tight four-song encore of a few deep cuts and a new single recorded during the pandemic, PDLIF, to link the timeline of the set from then to now. Truly a gently masterful performance, I cannot recommend catching Bon Iver live enough. The records do not do this band justice.

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InterviewsTour Interview

Interview with Henry Rollins

(NR) It’s been close to seven years since your last time here, with a few years of COVID in between to keep your feet planted. Did you miss being on the road the last few years? Is life on tour something you look forward to?

(HR) I’d rather be on tour than home. On tour or at least traveling. I didn’t start out that way but after many years of living for months at a time all over the place, I figured it was the best thing for me. So, yes, I’ve missed touring a lot and also, I wondered if live shows were going to still be a possibility ever again. When I was finally able to go back out again, it was amazing. At this moment, I’m in Warsaw, Poland. 

In Melbourne the post-pandemic setting has injected a breath of fresh air and positivity into the local music scene. Have you seen this effecting musicians and audiences around you in the US?

Yes. You see it in interviews and at shows. Both bands and audiences are into being back. I think of a lot of people, going to shows is a normal thing and being able to go to a show again is somewhat closer to how things were before COVID. 

You’ve got an eclectic taste to say the least. In a time where genre is almost becoming a thing of the past, what’ve been your favourite records of the past year?

Tamar Aphek’s album All Bets Are Off I thought was really smart, the new Automatic album Excess is great. There’s a band from Atlanta, Georgia called Upchuck on the Famous Class label who are really good. 

I know you love Hard-Ons and Nick Cave, who else are some Aussie icons of yesteryear and today who you love to listen to?

I play a lot of Australian bands on my radio show. 1-800-MIKEY, Chimers, Alien Nosejob, Delivery, The Prize, Imperial Leather, Romero, Power Supply, Shifters, Blonde Revolver, Gee Tee. This is just off the top of my head. Apologies to all the ones I’m not listing. There seems to be no shortage of great bands out of Australia. 

You’re a big crate digger, what makes a record store a good one for you? Is it about selection, personality, genre? And what is your favourite Melbourne record store? I’m always hearing rumours of you popping into Poison City…

For me, a good record store is one that takes advantage of space by curating well. Strangeworld Records in Melbourne is a must go to store. I usually arrange a day off on tour to spend hours there and warn Richie what day I’ll be there. He sets aside records he thinks I might like and I check them out. He knows his stuff and his store is packed with great records. This is the mark of a good store. The people who run it actually listen to the music and are able to recommend good music to the customers come to trust the “cool person at the record store.” These kind of relationships can go for years. 

You spoke a while back about the effect a good record can have on someone going through trouble, for example giving a young queer kid a DEVO record. What music helped you most in the harder years of youth?

When I was teenage, we had arena rock, the big bands you’d hear on the radio. We’d go see them. It was pretty good but a bit anonymous. It’s you and thousands of people. Then, we were able to go to clubs and smaller venues and everything changed. Seeing Led Zeppelin was great but standing right in front of the Clash or the Ramones, like getting sweated on by them, seeing the Cramps from up front, these were for me, life altering events. It was Punk Rock, which I got into as soon as I was able that was the big change in my life. DEVO’s album Duty Now For The Future, I don’t know how many times I’ve played that. 

What’re your thoughts on social media today, and how bands often have no choice but to dive into it as a platform to their art? Do you think the cycle of content creation is harming the creativity of today’s musicians?

I could not say how a music platform affects a band’s work. The Indie bands I listen to, they seem to make their music with no problem, there’s vinyl and downloads and it sounds good to me. They tour and I go to see them play. It doesn’t seem any different in that respect than it’s ever been. There might be a lot I’m not seeing because I’m old and I don’t make records any more. I can’t see anyone’s creativity being pushed on. 

You’ve brought up your experience being over medicated as a child. How do you think it effected your development? Do you think labels and medication are helpful for a neuro- divergent child, or did you find it more of a hinderance?

I was given a lot of Ritalin. When I was young, they were fairly throwing it down my neck. I cannot speak to what it might have done to me with any authority as I’m not a doctor but it did keep me from eating and I think that had an effect on my growth. Again, I’m simply not qualified to speak on medications and those being medicated. I have a feeling I was one thing but being medicated for something else. At this point, if I were somehow prescribed a medication for my brain, I’d never go near it. 

In 2019, you spoke about the “strong silent type” and the harm it can have on men, what do you think defines masculinity for you, or what should men strive for in today’s age?

I think both men and women, at least in the “Western World” are marketed to up to the gills. In those endless pitches, an identity via consumerism can be established. Men are supposed to do this, wear this, smell like this, like this, not like that, etc. Someone’s making money and someone else is getting played. What if men were to completely throw out the idea of masculinity, or at least treat it as merely an exercise in branding, and just be themselves. Their orientation and hormonal balance will probably steer them where they need to go, they don’t need to look at an advertisement or listen to some stupid thing their father told them (I’m projecting here) and they can just be who they are. What to strive for? Maybe a life without the role playing. 

What kind of stories and tales can your fans expect upon your return to Aus in June and July?

I’ve always got a lot to say. I’ll be about 170 shows into the tour at that point, so I should be pretty well oiled.

See what Henry Rollins has to say on his upcoming tour

Tickets are on sale now!

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[Review] Slowthai @ 170 Russell, Melbourne 08/02/2023

I was lucky enough to catch Slowthai last time he appeared down under, way back in 2019 at Listen Out festival in St Kilda. I remembered death circles, surprises, drugs and rage, and it was a joy to see and hear. When I heard the UK rapper was finally making his return to Australia, I knew I had to catch up with Tyron and see how he’d evolved as a performer. And well, he’s grown.

The 28-year-old rapper, Northhampton raised rose to popularity in 2019 along with his Nothing Great About Britain album and hits like T N Biscuits. Following up two years later with a killer sophomore release in TYRON, Thai is now preparing to drop his third record, with several dope singles already released and a tour to prime us for more.

Returning again to 170 Russell, I was impressed by the sold out venue’s ability to still have keen line of sight vision from almost every corner of the room. The stage was clearly visible even from the bar, but the choice to maintain a low level of light with a red background turned the whole thing into a dingy future-punk stage show.

Fantastic crowd connection was the key to Slowthai’s tight, one hour set. No opener, no DJ warmup. 10pm Slowthai hit the stage and set the crowd alight. Opening with his newest single, Feel Good, takins us right into what makes Thai a vibe. Punk drums, distorted bass, grimy bars. Backing it up with his controversial hit CANCELLED, which moved into a freestyle verse, he quickly dismissed it “probably the worst freestyle I’ve ever done”. Now in this moment, he could’ve made it awkward, but embraced the weirdness with the classic Freddie Mercury operatic crowd call and response.

Enjoying his control over the audience, Slowthai set a rule. Side A, when called would shout “Fuck off”. Side B, “cunt” and the people up the back, “dickhead”. A hilarious call to arms for the people, every few songs he shuffled between calling for all the areas to shout their chosen chant. And to top it off, he randomly went into a sing-along of ElvisCan’t Help Falling In Love, and a crowd of twenty-somethings knew every word.

Switching it up with his Bernard Herrmann inspired horrorcore banger Psycho, featuring Denzel Curry, the crowd was knocking yet again. Choosing controversy yet again, the UK rapper then decide to tell us that his hometown biscuit, Penguin, was better than Australia’s Tim Tam. Bizarre, angry hilarity ensued.

From this point, the hits didn’t stop. Deal Wiv It, the Mura Masa hit, followed by the Gorillaz goofy rager Momentary Bliss, Desire and the cherry on top, the modern classic: Doorman. Many, many epic nights with my friends have started or ended with a singalong of this song. “Door man, let me in the door. Spent all my money you ain’t getting no more”. The kickass drums, the awesome descending bassline, the distorted narration sample of some old punk documentary, the whole track is a vibe.

Leaving Slowthai, the air was thick with sweat, pot and joy. Every single member of the audience was feeling the beat, channelling the energy and craving more. And knowing I’m going to be seeing him again this weekend at Laneway, I’m already ecstatic with excitement

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[Review] Marc Rebillet @ Forum Theatre, Melbourne 25/01/2023

When I walked into the Forum Theatre last night, the first thing I noticed was the choice of clothing. Every second person was wearing bathrobes! I’d been well aware of Marc Rebillet and his brand of humour through his online presence, but nothing could’ve prepared me for the pure silliness in store for me at Marc’s debut Melbourne show. Delayed several times due to the troubles of the last few years, Marc has been waiting a long time to make his first appearance down under and, now that he finally has, he’s commenced his three sold out shows with a brilliant opening night.

Blowing up on YouTube, Instagram and TikTok, Marc Rebillet is a musician who specialise in improvisational beatmaking with a comedy angle, ala Reggie Watts, with a distinct Millennial twist. Many of his songs are goofy celebrations or warnings, such as VACCINATED ATTITUDE and YOUR NEW MORNING ALARM

Opening up for Marc was the brilliant Cry Club, a queer pop-punk duo from Wollongong. They dedicated their first song People Like Me to queer rage everywhere, and tore into a set of passionate, dancy rock music.

I was surprised and happy to hear them sneak into a cover of Olivia Rodrigo’s smash-hit Good For You, which was a killer sing-along. The also paid tribute to the goth gods of old, with the track Robert Smith, dedicated to The Cure’s fantastic front man, taking the opportunity, of course, to slander his fallen-from-grace peer Morrissey.

After Cry Club’s short but sweet warmup, the first sight we got of Marc was his face bouncing around the screen behind the stage, like a DVD screensaver from the early 2000s. This immediately set the tone for the whole show, as the crowd would cheer and holler every time the face got close to a corner, only to cry in disappointment when it wasn’t perfect corner. This continued for some time, until we finally achieved nostalgic perfection with a clean hit to the corner, and the screen faded to black. Then the show began.

Marc Rebillet took to the stage. Not to play a song, but to take a moment to bask in the crowd. He immediately began engaging with us, asking if we were ready, jumping into the crowd to get responses on the microphone, hyping us up with his boisterous personality. Then he jumped behind the laptop, and we were treated to possibly the funniest visualiser I have ever seen at a concert.

Marc’s computer screen was displayed on screen, with him entering his lewd but hilarious password, and us being treated to goofy folder names including “definitely not porn” and “beets”, but opening up the tour visuals, only to blow our minds. Cats playing piano, suggestive videos of fruit, turtles fornicating, the whole deal. Marc clearly had one feeling on the mind: horny. And the crowd was right there with him.

Jumping into beat making, Marc layered snares, hats, and percussion for many bars, teasing us before finally punching us in the face with a kickass bass, accompanied by pyrotechnics, pushing the crowd into an immediate up-tempo tech house groove. Mixing one beat into the next, with random stops to say something out of pocket and hilarious, Marc sat perfectly between techno DJ and the kid with too many sugary treats in their lunchbox, the energy built in those first few minutes managed to power a crowd of crazed fans for a full hour and forty minutes.

Mid set, a bra was thrown on stage. Typical display for a rockstar, but being his silly self, Marc was of course obliged to wear it for almost the whole rest of the show. Nothing stumps Marc Rebillet. Taking a moment to speak to a fan in the crowd, the fan responded that Marc was much smaller in person. Such a comment wouldn’t be great on most men’s egos, but this man will use anything for inspiration, so a beat is made using the statement as a key lyric. Nothing stumps Marc Rebillet.

In case it wasn’t already clear, near the end of the show Marc told us that there were no setlists, no plans, and that it was all made up on the spot. Authenticity doesn’t come much closer in live music than this. Ending the show with the hits GIRLS CLUB and FLAMINGO, Marc secured several thousand fans loyalty to the cult of Rebillet, and proved to me that he was more than a meme and in fact a deeply talented, and stupidly hilarious artist.

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