It’s night three of BIGSOUND 2022 – hands up if you can still feel your legs. No, me neither. What else is to be done but get right into it?
The string of Rage Against the Machine tracks that played over the house system at the Loft gave some indication of what’s to follow when The Riot took to the stage. The Gold Coast quartet is made up of four very different musicians stylistically, but when it all comes together it works beautifully and provides the perfect start to another night of outstanding music.
Over at the Outpost, Selve laid down some catchy grooves and upbeat vibes before a hugely appreciate audience with the levels of throwaway fun right on the money. Led by Jabbirr Jabbirr man Loki Liddle, the band provided one of the highlights of the evening early on; all killer synths and even more killer basslines, joined by much-loved Auslan interpreter Mikey Webb. A finale of Fatboy Slim’s ‘Praise You’ lifted hearts and spirits – these guys deserve a lot of attention from all the best people.
In the mall, Blute’s was once again packed to sardine levels as Platonic Sex took to the stage. The buzz around the Brisbane alt-rock four-piece was palpable, and early track ‘Devil’s Advocate’; all about letting go of the ball and chain of toxic masculinity showed why.
Wooly Mammoth Mane Stage was similarly rammed for an assured performance from Beckah Amani, who played a clutch of songs from her recently released EP, including the excellent ‘Smoke and Mirrors’, highlighting the singer-songwriter’s passion for ethical fashion choices and tackling climate change. The towering ‘Standards’ elicited enthusiastic audience participation Radio Ga Ga-style as Amani repeated “For a black woman like me / I’m standing up for my needs” alongside some deft guitar licks.
At O’Skulligans, up-and-coming folkie Sam Windley performed songs that appear soft and lovely on first listen but are laced with confusion and pain through the lyrics, while over at BLVD, Brisbane’s Yb grinned from ear to ear amid a smooth set of genre-bending indie/pop gems and tight musicianship.
Dallas Woods promised he was “gonna take you all home to the East Kimberley” amid several audience interactions sprinkled through the Noongar rapper’s set at Summa House. Early track ‘Colorblind’ from the recent ‘Julie’s Boy’ EP hit home hard, and when joined by both members of Fly Boy Jack (who impressively upped the swear count immediately), the set kicked up several gears towards an epic finish.
At Sound Garden, bass player turned produced Tentendo described his BIGSOUND experience as “full-on, as I’m pretty introvert”, while producing an instantly classy, instantly catchy, instantly danceable, and instantly generally bloody impressive set of dance tracks alongside his keyboard player and drummer. What a find.
At the Loft, Jerome Farah set about unleashing something particularly special – even among so much bright talent over the past three days. From the second the Melburnian opened his lungs it was a show-stopper; the former dancer moved from smooth soul to soaring strength to rap and back again with ludicrous ease. “When my hair isn’t in braids, it’s in a huge afro,” he explains, mocking the constant requests from people wanting to touch it before ‘Afro’ kicks in. The lyric line “Why you gotta go and do that for? Please, white boy, don’t touch my afro” is delivered with humour and power, and the audience reacted with appreciation in spades. This was one of the best performances of the festival, and the perfect point to call it a day for this reviewer.
Now it’s time for that sweet, sweet sleep. Thank you and good night.