One of the best things about the annual Soundwave Festival is all the amazing bundle ‘Sidewave’ shows that occur to the lead-up of the main day. Over the course of the week, the city of Melbourne is inundated with a plethora of international Rock acts of the heavier persuasion of music. Every single venue throughout Melbourne is hosting 3-4 top shelf acts.
Tonight the dice fell my way and I was granted access to photograph Baroness, Gojira and Mastodon. All unique acts in their own right and ones I am a big fan of.
It promised to be an awesome night of photography and music, and indeed, that is exactly what it was.
Baroness rank as one of my absolute fave bands. I love them. Dearly. And if you look at my Last.fm stats of the last few years, they are my most played band. Even more than… shock, horror – Ghost!
It was incredible finally getting to see them live. For most of their set, they were bathed in yellow and green light in a celebratory nod to their ‘Yellow and Green’ masterpiece album(s). They left the stage with smiles on their faces that matched the incredibly warm reception from a very receptive and engrossed crowd.
And again, as they have done every time I have seen them… Gojira took hold of the Palace stage and turned it and the entire Palace precinct to mush. Superbly heavy and meticulous, they had the crowd in the palm of their hand and put forth a classic technical Metal set. No one sounds like these guys. I don’t think anyone comes close to pulling off ‘that’ sound.
Seeing the floor of the Palace come alive in a circle pit that had to be seen to be believed was quite a sight I can assure you. As I left the photo-pit and walked up the stairs, I turned back and saw what was unfolding. The bright Palace lights were shining directly into the epicentre of the pit and I quickly took the camera out to get the shot.
Gojira… fuckn phenomenal. Nothing more needs to be said.
How was Mastodon to follow that? Who the fuck knows. But they did. Ploughing through a selection of their hits, they almost looked like they were in first gear but that was more than enough to please their fan base even though I did hear cries of ‘Gojira’ during their set.
One Sidewave down, another to come tomorrow night…