Virgin Music

Live Review: 10 Things We Learnt at Homebake Festival – The Domain (03.12.2011)

The Australian (and some New Zealand) music festival was named “The Classic Edition” this year, with a lineup featuring legends The Church, Ratcat and Grinderman.
Here are 10 things I learned:

10. You can make a comeback
When Homebake announced it wasn’t happening 2010 I was worried and thought it would drop off the scene completely. But it returned like an old friend in 2011.

9. The Domain is the perfect place for a festival
It has it all. Rides, trees, the city skyline and the Harbour Bridge in the distance.

8. The biggest expectation can give you the biggest disappointment
The crowd for Gotye was huge but the sound problems on stage mixed with complicated arrangements were enough to make a lot of people leave after hit ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’. The song should have been the biggest singalong moment but it was too quiet to have much of an impact.

7. Simplicity often beats complexity
Dance act PNAU followed Gotye and showed you need a killer beat and a lot of energy to pull off singalong of the day. Seeing everyone hold their hands up and sing “Be my embrace now” was the highlight of their set.

6. We needed more rock bands
Electronic, hiphop and indie-pop music are all good fun but I missed the heavy mosh The Living End or Grinspoon would have provided. I had to jump up and down to ‘90s hit ‘That Ain’t Bad’ by Ratcat instead.

5. The bars and toilets at the smaller stages have short lines
Over at the small Rowland S. Howard stage, we found “secret toilets” that weren’t portaloos or in a state after 3pm. And instead of waiting an hour in the bar line like the people near the main stages, we waited ten minutes.

4. The Vines still know how to rock.
Even though they were on early and placed between hiphop artist 360 and Architecture in Helsinki, they drew a large and loyal crowd. About halfway through their set a circle formed and had people running in and out, bumping shoulders with each other. Not everyone enjoyed that, if the guy with blood pouring down his face was anything to go by.

3. There will always be surprises
RockWiz Live brought out Ross Wilson from Daddy Cool to sing the classic ‘Eagle Rock’ on stage. It doesn’t get much more Australian than that.

2. It’s not a festival for show-offs
A guy got into a fenced off area and started entertaining us by dancing on a wooden box. When he jumped back over the fence, he was carried away by what appeared to be undercover security.

1. The Australian music scene is alive and kicking
The ‘classic’ bands were great but Hungry Kids of Hungary, Papa Vs Pretty and The Jezabels showed they’re keeping the standard of Australian music high.

Welcome back Homebake! Don’t ever leave us again.

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