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A NOT SO SILENT NIGHT

The Floors - Photo by Rachael Barrett
The Floors – Photo by Rachael Barrett

The Rosemount Hotel

Friday, December 12, 2014

With the sun setting on a warm day over the Rosemount Hotel in December one’s mind tends to wander towards thoughts the festive season and hard rock acts. The Rosemount Hotel’s Christmas party A Not So Silent Night provided more of the latter rather than the former. Not so much “round yon virgin’s miracle birth sleeps in heavenly peace” and more “acts rocking out and turning it up to 11.”

With this little black duck rocking up just after 7pm, apologies go out to Mossy Fog and Sharon who did the heavy lifting of the early sets and had gathered an appreciative early crowd.

With a bassist rushing to the stage start the set, delayed by what one can only presume to be trying to find some myrrh, the heavy riffing King Zog kicked off the night by bringing the Christmas Doom. The large sound of the four-piece was heavy enough to wipe out the last of the sunlight for the evening, and small things like broken strings did not stop them bringing the riffs to the small and enthusiastic crowd. Beginning the aural assault King Zog set the volume bar early for the evening, making ear plugs not just a fashion statement early in the piece.

Bringing smoother indie rock sounds to the table was Odlaw. Their Pavement-esque jangly guitars, sweet vocals kept the crowd moving for best viewing positions for the two stage gig. People quickly got into position to watch the young four piece unleash their sweet, fuzzy sounds.

Attention quickly returned to the elevated stage as King Cactus took the stage. Filling the stage at the Rosemount the quintet had the crowd grooving to their special blend of blues and 1960s garage sounds.
The shoegazing noise of Hyla was next to bring attention to the floor stage. The volume and wonderful feedback created by the shoegazing foursome is reminiscent of such acts as Swervedriver and My Bloody Valentine, Hyla’s set was dreamy and hypnotic and equally powerful, with a volume loud enough to start shaking the glasses at the bar. Much distortion, very bass.

The swelling crowd next turned to witness the all girl hard rocking four piece Legs Electric. A straight up, blues driven, balls to the wall rock band with the peddle to the metal from go to whoa, they pulled out one of the best performances of the night, the vocal stylings of Ama Quinsee being spot on and even delivering a great Kiss cover, Black Diamond, mid-set.

Unfortunately the crowd thinned at this point, maybe a lack of nicotine in the punters’ systems, maybe a breather after the blistering set by Legs Electric. Either way those who stayed witnessed a great set by punk/grunge duo Black Stone From The Sun. Hard hitting, raw and intense, you could hear their love buzz!

As the crowd once again swelled hard rocking locals Scalphunter climbed onto stage, adding a sense of formality to the Christmas celebrations in their traditional Canadian tuxedos. With their turbo-charged catchy punk tunes they soon had the crowd mesmerised. Much fist pumping, rock posing and crowd interaction was to be had, with lead singer, Steve Knoth, wanting to drag everyone home with him!

Bringing it down a notch, stoner rockers Skullcave mellowed the crowd significantly. The fuzzy drone trio provided a dreamy come down for the late night crowd, Liam Young’s vocals setting the dreamy, tone for the intense soundscapes laid down by the group.

The night was wrapped up by fuzzy blues trio The Floors with a big slice of slide guitar. The boys were carting a bit of country rock that seemed to attract some cowboy hat wearing punters from somewhere. With a lowdown dirty Beasts Of Bourbon-inspired sound the trio kept the crowd swaying into the morning.

PHILLIP MILLER