Punk & Disorderly – August / September

Alice Worley

Alice Worley

Alice is a tattooist by day who fights the patriarchy as a loud and proud punk by night. She's been reviewing gigs for a while, but thought it was time to give this columnist thing a go. Send her gigs and anarchist proclamations at alice.worley@outlook.com.
Alice Worley

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I am so proud to hear the way that out-of-town bands have been speaking to me about Canberra’s music scene. Cable Ties, The Last Exposure, Carb on Carb, and even the great Amanda Palmer, have all been speaking highly of our under-rated city.

Nick Brown from Cable Ties approached me and a few friends at The Phoenix just to tell us about how special the scene felt from an outsider’s perspective and how lucky he felt to be amongst us. Nicole from Carb on Carb said at their gig at Transit last month that, though New Zealand is the greatest country in the world, Canberra is the greatest city. Chelsea and Hayley of The Last Exposure were so elated by the crowd they drew and support they received for their gig at the Phoenix that they even spoke to me of a growing desire to move here! And punk-cabaret goddess Amanda Palmer told her audience at the Canberra Theatre of the stern lecture she gave a Melbourne crowd that mocked our town and how very wrong they were to do so. Cheers, Amanda, we love you too!

The only blatant exception I’ve experienced recently was seeing Joyce Manor at Transit, and I’m surprised it wasn’t written about in the review of that gig. I could only groan and roll my eyes at how obviously they felt they were too good to have a show here. Their attitude earned them a bit of a heckling. It was awkward.

Destrends playing at The Phoenix on Friday August 11. Photo by Alice Worley.

By the time this issue is printed, Destrends will have just been and gone, but I hope you all went to their show at Phoenix because I know it will have been mind-blowing. Their new music video, ‘Lousy Lover’, is currently floating on the web and the album it spawned from is also something beautiful to behold. It reminds me so much of The Horrors’ album Strange House, which has been in regular circulation on my car speakers for years now. While you look up their new clip, I would also recommend listening to ‘My Friend’, ‘Skin’, and ‘Papa’. Amazing tracks, every one.

Wet Lips played with Moaning Lisa and Violet Fahy at the Phoenix and I am so glad that they drew such a decent crowd considering how much there was going on that evening. It was one of those nights where there were just way too many things to pick from and it is simply too hard to decide what to go to. The Polish Club, The Front, and LoBrow all had pretty huge gigs on with really, REALLY good bands/soloists playing. Having seen Jenny McKechnie’s other band, Cable Ties, I decided I needed to see Wet Lips too. I spoke enough about Cable Ties in my review, so I’ll just talk about Wet Lips now. Their songs are short, sweet and full of pep, reminding me of my days listening to The Vines and how all their songs were about two-three mins long but still had all the impact and punch that they required. Definitely got an L7 kinda vibe from them, that 90s-style girl punk; the kind of band I imagine Daria and Jane listening to in their bedrooms. My legs were so hot and red from how hard I’d been slapping them to the beat of the drums. Come back any time, ladies! Canberra digs you!

Punk Gig Guide:


Thu Aug 17 – Silver Linings EP Launch @ The Front

Fri Aug 18 – Trent and Jaryd’s Birthday Bash @ The Basement

Fri Aug 18 – Self Talk, Brief Habits, Helena Pop, Slagatha Christie @ The Phoenix

Sat Aug 19 – Paper Thin, Speakeasy, Bleach It Clean, Elk Locker, Sleeping Døgs @ The Front

Thu Aug 24 – Trash Boat (UK) @ Transit Bar

Fri Aug 25 – Major Leagues, Moaning Lisa, Teen Jesus and the Jean Teasers @ Transit Bar

Fri Aug 25 – School Damage, California Girls, Passive Smoke @ Lacklustre Records

Sat Sep 2 – Plyers, Shoeb Ahmad, Sleeping Døgs @ LoBrow Gallery & Bar

Sun Sep 17 – The Getaway Plan @ Transit Bar

Tue Sep 19 – Camp Cope, Worriers (USA), The Last Exposure @ The Basement

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