Best of 2013 - Music + Gigs

We went to a bunch of shows in 2013, here's a selection of the most memorable.

2001: A Space Odyssey | I love this film and was so excited to see a live performance of the soundtrack accompanied by a screening of the film in the Sydney Opera House. I learned one valuable lesson. Even though I know the movie by heart and don't need to sit in the front row, the nosebleed seats in the Sydney Opera House are near impossible to bear. So squishy and high up it was nauseating. Duly noted. Other than that it was incredible to see the film brought to life with a live orchestra. I never tire of hearing a huge group of musicians show off their talents.

Bat For Lashes | Natasha Khan is just lovely. This show was plain wonderful on every level. The crowd were polite and calm (!) and Ms. Lashes was the epitome of professional. Her performance was fun and she sounded great. She wore a beautiful rainbow cape ensemble from local designers Romance Was Born and just put on a fabulous show, complete with humble thank-you's after each song. There was much dancing and the odd awkward karaoke moment.

Zelda Symphony | Geek out alert! We took a friend who is a fellow avid Zelda fan along to the Opera House to hear the Zelda Symphony Performance. (It's always a good excuse to take someone to something you want to see too!) Again, it's exciting to see a performance inside the Opera House and I was doubly excited to spot one of my old classmates from school playing violin! She always practised so hard, so I'm really proud that she has achieved that level of success. The Zelda music was cool too.

Dead Can Dance | Another show at the Opera House. I was looking forward to this show, but the crowd and perhaps something with the band was a bit off. I wanted to enjoy it, but we ended up leaving a bit early. Lisa Gerrard has such an amazing voice though, which we were both in awe of.

Godspeed You! Black Emperor | This show was just incredible. I really love Godspeed, so maybe I am biased, but I was drawn in and throughly admire the hypnotic nature of this music. It was great to see the gradual build up of their songs performed live.

Cat Power | Oh, Chan. We saw Cat Power when she did the Jukebox tour and waited with some misgivings for her to appear on stage. The previous time she was in Sydney (I heard), she broke down on stage and was heckled by some fine members of our city as she hid behind the piano. When she eventually appeared, she put on a brilliant show. This time. Jeez. I don't know. Her performance was amazing, her voice is beautiful, but it was sad to watch her seek attention in such a negative fashion by constantly referring to her drug and alcohol abuse. I hope she sorts herself out because her music is beautiful but she seems like such a fragile lady.

The Drones | Great Australian rock band - please don't spit on the Opera House though. It felt odd to have a super loud show inside the concert hall with drunk people spilling beer on the nice seats. Maybe it was just a weird juxtaposition that I couldn't resolve. Normally The Drones are amazing but I don't think they're a sit down kinda band, you know?

Blade Runner/Vangelis | Another orchestra performance, this time of another favourite film, Blade Runner. It was pretty great, although the cello player had his mobile on in his bag on stage and it kept transmitting through the speakers. Kinda distracting. The music was beautiful though, it definitely transports you to a futuristic rainy cityscape.

Goblin | The Italian masters of horror soundtrack fame (Suspiria, anyone?) did not disappoint. At all. The original members are getting on, but they rocked out like it was the best night of their lives. At the end they turned on the lights to check out the crowd and thanked us profusely. The amount of fun they were having was contagious, it was just great to witness. And that keyboard rack... oh boy. What an amazing collection of beautiful instruments.

Sonalio | We finally managed to catch our friend, Takuto's band in Tokyo. It was really fun watching the opening acts, who were, in my opinion, a Japanese version of post-rock style. (There's probably a proper genre, but I'm hopeless with the specifics of that stuff) There was a lot of spoken word which was super emotional and serious, I wish I could have understood. Sonalio put on an amazing show, damn these guys are good! Takuto is a fellow motion graphics designer and he created a really cool projection show. I'm so happy we were in Tokyo at the right time to be invited to such a special night. (and how great is it that the show was called "Teddy Party"? I love Japan.)
Takuto rocking out on his bass :)

Sleep | Another gig I was super excited for that the crowd kinda ruined for me. If you're familiar with Sleep, you'll know that they play really heavy, slow music. Honestly, I've never seen a more violently excited group of stoners(?). The moshpit was kind of out of control with fist-fights, head butting and general mayhem. We stayed for awhile, but got fed up fairly quickly and watched from the edges. Since when did doom music incite such rage? (Is that a silly question?) Meh. That's Sydney for you. Like that one time we went to see Guitar Wolf and a skinhead threw a glass at Guitar Wolf's face and broke his tooth :( The next time we went to see Guitar Wolf, the gig was full of "loli girls", go figure.

We saw sunn o))) and Boris in Melbourne a few years back, (same kinda scene as Sleep) and it was a pretty laconic gig. Maybe that highlights the difference between Sydney and Melbourne? (no rivalry guys, we know who's better - and I'm a traitor)

But I digress. Looking back at 2013, we went to so many big shows, I can hardly believe it! There seemed to be a wealth of great music going on in our city this year. Did you see any amazing bands this year? I'd love to find out if we have music tastes in common, or what kind of shows you've been to :)

Kitty
xo

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