Saturday, January 28, 2006

Blog Day Out

Australia Day. Big Day Out = Being at the Sydney Olymic stadium straight and sober and dancing to Loonaloop (who kindly offered me a ticket) in the sunshine at midday; wandering with friends among tens of thousands of others (something like 50,000 people all up); listening to Henry Rollins do a spoken word piece; going from Henry Rollins to Kamahl (old, kitsche Indian guy famous for singing about children and saying in a thick Indian accent, “Why are people so unkind?”); dancing in a cavernous night club room called The Boiler Room to Australian DJ legend Kid Kenobi; being high up in the stadium and being amazed at the size of the crowd (which ebbed and flowed like sea grass as people crushed their way to the front) in front of local band Wolfmother; wandering aimlessly and running into people I hadn’t seen in ages; realising at some point that I was less straight than before; being lead reluctantly back to the main stage to see Franz Ferdinand, who I am not a fan of but I seemed willing to enjoy anything by that stage; realising that my mind was wandering hopelessly and deciding that my body should wander too; leaving the others and wandering alone amongst all those people for hours, asking myself questions, thinking about the people in my life and realising that there is not all that much to worry about but that I will worry about stupid things anyway because as humans, that is what we have been trained to do; seeing some really weird shit and hearing some seriously weird music; not staying for too long in one place back in The Boiler Room because - being alone and apparently single - guys with their shirts off start checking you out and girls with wiggly bums dance too close in spite of all the room in front of them; wondering from time to time how the hell I was ever going to find my way out of this enormous complex; somehow wandering back to the mainstage in time for Iggy Pop and watching in awe as this freak of nature... this sinewy maelstrom of ferocious energy took the audience by the balls and did not let go; deciding that nothing was going to top that performance and that it was time to leave because I did not want to deal with an over-crowded train ride home in the state I was in, which was, as I told someone on my colourful, squishy, bendy breathy phone, “hilariously scootered.”

But earlier in the day... In all honesty, Henry Rollins started to bore me. He just did a lot of name dropping and told stories that didn't have much of a point. He was amusing and interesting enough for a short while, but I was expecting more energy and more anger. I liked his point about using your mind and as weapon and not taking the edge off your intellect with drugs and alcohol; that the audience cheered drunkenly at this was hilarious. “Yair fuggin’ right on you tell ‘em ‘enry faaarck yeah!”

As was going from someone like that to the surreal kitsche of the 70 year old Kamahl. He’s become some sort of icon of optimism over the years and kind of parodies himself, and weird as it was, his bouncy ditties had the audience singing along and I was smiling like a kid with a double ice cream.

Wandering, wandering. Looking down at what was happening before Wolfmother, I had to admit that my ongoing criticism about the lack of energy at rock gigs (compared to dance parties) was not always fair, because that place was seething with energy. The style of music Wolfmother plays is old school rock rather like Led Zeppelin, and at times it was easy to imagine that this was the ‘70s all over again.

Running across the large screen there was a ticker tape strip with text messages people could send in, and along with all the messages like “Happy Australia Day”, “Wolfmother rocks” and “I love you Angela – will you marry me” were some racist messages that had me shaking my head. As did the many guys wearing the Australian flag like a superhero’s cape and acting like fuckwits. Captain Australia? Captain Yobbo more like it. Too much booze, too much patriotism.

Still, overall the vibe was one of celebration and people were generally happy.

The hour or so of watching Iggy Pop was mesmerising. He’s 59 years old or something, and I could not believe the energy he has coiled up in that wiry body. I just watched, enthralled, and left at the conclusion as he swaggered from the destroyed stage, not looking back but flipping the bird to the audience. Very fucking rock ‘n roll.

I felt a little bad leaving the others hours earlier, and initially I was just going for a short walk, but then I found myself roaming all over the place and just felt really peaceful. I kind of wanted someone there from time to time to share some of the funny things I saw and heard, some of the random thoughts, but ultimately I kind of needed to be alone.

Made my way home, and The Dreaded One had had a great day with her friend. She was watching a movie about Oscar Wilde; I aplogised because I knew I was about to take up all of her attention and talk over the top of the movie to tell her in excruciating detail about my day, which I did. Then we watched Austen Tayshus, old school stand up comic, and he was hilarious. Kind of guy who chews up and spits out anyone stupid enough to heckle him.

A very cool day indeed.


Henry Rollins said...

Oh you're so good aren't you, with your pissy little blog, man. And you're a goddamn writer for a music mag, a leach on those making a living doing the business and you call me boring. Fuck you. You should have come up on the day and told me to my face that you thought I was boring, but you wouldn't have the balls. Man if Johnny Ramone was here he'd like... Johnny Ramone was a real man, man, and my stories about Johnny Ramone are NOT BORING! THEY'RE NOT! OKAY? YOU SEE THESE VEINS POKING OUT IN MY ENORMOUSLY THICK NECK MAN? THAT'S HOW MUCH PASSION I'VE GOT FOR MY STORIES ABOUT JOHHNY RAMONE AND AND AND IGGY AND MY MIND'S LIKE A STEEL TRAP... so screw you.

Quick said...

Oh shut it Henry. Who the hell was Johnny Ramone anyway? "Twenny twenny twenny four hours to gooooo/I wanna be sedated..." Yeah whatever. Look I've got neck veins too pal, I can get pissed off too. So, you know, you want to compare neck veins? BRING IT ON PUNK!

Henry Rollins said...

Don't you knock Johhny Ramone. He was a legend man. Rock n roll wouldn't exist without Johnny Ramone man and... like, no one... NO ONE HAS NECK VEINS LIKE ME MAN! And if you think you have bigger neck veins than me, then YOU'RE A LIAR! A LIAR!

Quick said...

Whatever. And that's not how you spell leach. Sheesh.

Iggy Pop said...

Henry, dude, take it easy. He's got a point. Like, it's not you spell leech. Neither is the way he spelled it, which was exactly the same. He's okay dude. Look what he said about me man. "A sinewy maelstrom of ferocious energy." Fuckin' way cool. And both of you, you know, you want to have a clash of neck veins, I'm in, and I think we know who's going to win there. So why don't we all just calm the fuck down and have some, you know, chamomile tea or something.

Johnny Ramone said...

I agree with Iggy. Calm Down. 'Cos let's face it Henry, you do tell that story about me quite a lot. I appreciate the respect, but maybe give it a rest for a while. You know?

Henry Rollins said...

Johnny Ramone? Fuck, man, aren't you, like, dead?

Johnny Ramone said...

Totally dead, man, but I gotta do something to kill the time, and this blog's pretty cool.

Guyana-Gyal said...

Darn, this was good, Quick, I enjoyed every word.

bee vee vee said...

i'm jealous.

franz ferdinand and placebo are playing here next month. i will be enjoying them sans chemicals. ouch!

happy year of the dog!

ps. iggy pop is a reanimated corpse

Iggy Pop said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Iggy Pop said...

I am not a reanimated corpse, okay? I am, like, totally noobile. That's what I am.

FAF said...

bloody funny.
ohh yeah and by the way she's my cutie friend not The Dreaded One!
Cuties Rule remember?
Shit these word verifications are doin my eyes in, I keep havin to retype.

Quick said...

Cuties rule? Fuck off. My blog, my rules.

(And I mean that in the sweetest possible way).