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MT MOUNTAIN

Mt. Mountain - Photo by Jampal Williamson
Mt. Mountain – Photo by Jampal Williamson

Dream Rimmy/SpaceManAntics/Hyla

The Odd Fellow

Friday, January 30, 2015

 

Hyla opened the evening to a smattering of punters with melodic and melancholy shoegaze, drenched in delay and reverb. Frontman Alex Hayes effused bored cool whilst drummer Darren Stapley kept it steady with solid, minimal beats, ably supported by capable bass and lush, effects-driven lead guitar. The last song of the set, upcoming single The Thousands, was particularly effective, with Hayes’ vocal echoing the guitar line. Hyla were a highlight of the evening.

SpaceManAntics kicked off with new single Katzenjammer, and the room filled quickly. Mastermind Broderick Madden-Scott was a smiling island of calm amongst the swirling sea of noise and ubiquitous long hair, anchored by George Foster’s always tasteful beats. The new Krautrock direction really suits the band. These guys enjoy what they do and are always a treat, as one energetic rug-cutter up the front can certainly testify.
Half of SpaceManAntics then returned to the stage as the rhythm section of Dream Rimmy, who now boast a seemingly superfluous third guitarist. They were a little flat, perhaps due to technical issues with keyboards causing an inordinately long set up. The set gathered momentum, however, with the soaring hooks of their best song, the radio-friendly Sunshine. Dream Rimmy have a simple but effective sound, with washed out harmonies and drawn-out, sometimes monotone vocal lines over mainly three-chord progressions. Frontperson Ali Flintoff is a larger-than-life character, peppering her faux-ocker stage banter with obscenities and encouraging the crowd to “lick our butts.” Expect big things to come from these WAM award winners.

Mt Mountain have some really nice gear, and they put it to excellent use. 12-string electric into Fender Twin Reverb, Yamaha organ into Vox AC30 and Rickenbacker bass all contributed to a colossal, ominous sound; monstrously repetitive to the point of hypnosis. Channelling Syd Barrett in the opening number, and reminiscent of Swans at times, the band transitioned smoothly through long, meditative jams, calculated and restrained. There was a possible lack of engagement with the audience, as punters began to filter out towards the end of the set. The healthy crowd of remaining faithful were rewarded with an up-tempo closing jam, replete with wah’d guitar lines. Originally billed as the main support for Melbourne’s Flyying Colours, who cancelled, Mt Mountain did an excellent job of headlining on what was a very balmy and lethargic evening at the Odd Fellow.

CONAL SAVINS