Bardo Pond + Dreamtime @ The Zoo, 02.08.2013

Bardo Pond @ The Zoo, Friday 2 August 2013

As with so many shows I go to, it’s another evening spend initially wondering about how many are going to be here tonight.  There’s the usual handful when arrive, only just getting into double figures by the time the first act plays but surprisingly the numbers swell by the time the headliners play.  There’s far more here than were here for Kirin J Callinan, the last time I was at The Zoo.

I make an early decision not to photograph the opening act as I thought it was going to be a laptop/effects performance by The Rational Academy’s Benjamin Thompson.  I always find these to be the least inspiring musicians to photograph and my mind is made up by the terrible lighting.  My decision to go to the bar, get a drink and grab a seat by the window looks to be vindicated when the first song is a long drone but falls over in the second song when there are vocals and a guest trumpet player.  Most of the other songs also have vocals, and it’s not just someone looking down at a table (a guitar flight in this case) of pedals and leads for 30 minutes.

Somehow I’ve always managed to miss Dreamtime and this is the first time I’ve seen them. It always surprises me just how easy it can be, even in a city as small as Brisbane, to miss out on local acts for such a long time.  The current position for ‘the band I really should have seen but haven’t yet’ is held by Go Violets which I keep meaning to fix but so far to no avail.  I like what I see of Dreamtime and they’re the best photos from the night.

Bardo Pond are excellent although it’s all so much better after I’ve finished photographing and am stood near the sound desk with my ear plugs taken out.  They’re frustrating to photograph as other than singer Isobel Sollenberger, the rest of the band hang around in the darkness of sides of the stage and there’s too many people pressed up against the stage to get the angles I’m after.  It’s also one of those nights where it feels like someone is trying to deliberately move in front of you to block your view, although it’s probably just my photographer’s paranoia.

The band are scheduled to play from 10:30 to midnight but I bail about half way through.  Although it’s a Friday night, I still don’t really want to be out in the Valley seeing bands at midnight and besides, there’s cricket to get back to and England on their way, despite playing so badly in the Old Trafford test, to regaining The Ashes and making it four in the last five series.  Walking out, although it’s only about 11:25pm, the Valley seems very quiet.  However, it doesn’t take too long for it to show its true colours. Heading down Constance Street, outside Kerbside there’s a bunch of police taking statements, including talking to a shirtless guy with dried blood all over his face.  Crossing Wickham and walking past the Wine Emporium place, there’s a couple of guys sat chatting to each other while their mate lies unconscious in the gutter.  It might only be 11:25pm on a Friday night but it’s a clear sign as to why so many people don’t really want to be out in the Valley seeing bands on the weekend.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.