Monday, 18 February 2013

Laneways Festival - 3 February 2013, Footscray Community Arts Centre

Looking at reactions from other people I don’t think I’m the only one who didn’t think Laneway was all that great this year. Part of the problem was that, for some reason I can’t figure out, the douche:human ratio was pretty bad. Part of the problem was the Triple J success the bands have had. There were lots of people that seemed intent on running from stage to stage to catch each band's hit single (about a third of the Japandroids crowd literally ran off at the end of House that Heaven Built). Not much the festival can easily do about that (although if it lasts for another year or two they might find people staying away). But they can definitely do something about the sound quality. As you can hear from this its pretty variable, but overall not great. Japandroids were pretty badly undermined by the fact it sounded like they were playing in a wind tunnel and Poliça don’t sound good either. Divine Fits on the other hand sounded pretty good (although someone should shoot the ‘Red Bull DJ’ who just turned things down slightly but kept on playing right over the top of the band until a roadie came and told him to stop).

I only managed to record four sets (I was one of many that spent an hour and a half stuck in the ATM line).

These guys are one of my favourite bands, and one of the main reasons I went to Laneways this year. Their set was good, but undermined by poor sound and the ‘hit single’ crowd I mentioned above.

Adrenaline Nightshift
Fire’s Highway
Younger Us
The Nights of Wine and Roses
Wet Hair
Evil’s Sway
The House That Heaven Built
Young Hearts Spark Fire
For the Love of Ivy

Divine Fits’ album is one of my favourite recent releases. This was one of the few sets of the day that had decent sound. With a limited amount of time they choose to get through almost all of their album, rather than engage with the crowd a lot, but this was still a great performance. FYI: this is the band that Japandroids are talking about at the end of their set.

Baby Get Worse
Flaggin a Ride
Would That Not Be Nice
My Love is Real
Civilian Stripes
The Salton Sea
Like Ice Cream
What Gets You Alone

I’m not sure if it was that the sound was awful, or that the crowd was treating them as background music, but I found Poliça fairly uninteresting. Their wasn’t anything wrong with them, but it didn’t grab me. I suspect with a smaller, more interested crowd the vibe would have been completely different.

The Maker
I See My Mother
Leading to Death
Dark Star
Fist Teeth Money
Lay Your Cards Out
Wandering Star
Happy Be Fine

A friend has been raving about Bat for Lashes and was jealous that Melbourne got a headlining show. That was the main reason I checked out her set. There were a few good songs, but I found her generally to be pretty boring. I suspect I might be in a minority with that opinion.

What’s a Girl to Do?
Sleep Alone
All Your Gold
Oh Yeah
Travelling Woman
The Haunted Man
Pearl’s Dream

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