I Used To Skate Once 7 @ The Zoo, 23.06.2011

It feels like it was only yesterday that I popped into I Used To Skate Once 6 on the way to and on the way back from the gorgeous Hope Sandoval gig at The Tivoli.  This year I had originally put in to cover Helmet at The Hi-Fi but decided that this would be more fun, a more enjoyable photographic experience and an earlier night.  In retrospect I really wish I’d gone to seen Helmet as it sounds like it was a great gig.

Although I get there within 30 minutes of the doors opening, it’s already packed and it’s impossible to get anywhere near the downstairs/outside stage to photograph McKisko.  Even worse than that, they’ve already run out of tortillas and so I have to have my burrito filling on a little plate.  The queue for the bar is as big as you’re ever likely to see at The Zoo as well; you can barely make it up the few steps that lead up to it. It doesn’t take long before it’s so full of people that it starts to feel claustrophobic.  The place is also full-to-bursting with hipsters, possibly every single one who lives in Brisbane.  At one point some chump sardonically asks me if I’ve got a blog, obviously noting the camera hung on my shoulder.  I’m about to answer when his chump mate chips in with “Have you got a Tumblr?”.  At this point I might have lied and told them it was called the Courier Mail but I don’t think they were paying attention anymore.

I manage to miss The Chokes as am busy catching up with people upstairs and decide to wait upstairs for Martyr Privates to make sure I get a good spot as they’re set up on the floor by the window.  If 2010 was the year of surf bands in Brisbane, 2011 is the year when every other new band in these parts has been listening to Jesus & Mary Chain records exclusively.   Martyr Privates are one of those bands.  Although it’s only the band’s second ever gig, it’s not particularly interesting or exciting.  It is early days for them though so maybe time will tell.  There is some light relief when Photo Dane manages to pull the power cord out of the bass amp as he takes a short cut behind the band.

Royal Headaches round out the night.  Impossible to photograph though, with the lights being really low and with lead singer, Shogun (no, really) running back and forth across the stage for the whole set.  Reviewers have compared them to post-punk bands like Buzzcocks and The Undertones; on first impressions I was reminded of Happy Mondays somehow.  Listening to them on Myspace after they sound absolutely nothing like them.  Maybe it was the ramshackle nature of it all, maybe it was the vocals, maybe it was just the parka jacket.

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