Gig Review: Spring Loaded Festival @ Sandstone Point Hotel

Artists: Spiderbait + Something For Kate + Jebediah + Mark Seymour + Frenzal Rhomb + Custard + Tumbleweed + Screamfeeder

Venue: Sandstone Point Hotel

Date: 22 June 2019

Review by Tammy Whitelaw

Photos by Tam Schilling (@tamcamimages)

Designated drivers were organised, babysitters booked, and faded band shirts pulled from the depths of closets all over Brisbane this weekend. All in preparation for Spring Loaded Festival at Sandstone Point Hotel. With a line-up of some of Australia’s biggest 90’s bands, middle-aged music fans were given the opportunity to relive the music of their youth.

Hosted by Frenzal Rhomb’s Lindsey Mcdougall (The Doctor) and held at one of the most picturesque outdoor venues in Brisbane, it was an incredibly fun day of live music. Kicking off proceedings were Brisbane live music scene stalwarts, Screamfeeder. With an already sizeable crowd filling the hillside venue, they worked their way through a solid set, including tracks ‘Dart’ ‘Static’ and ‘High C’s’.

The 90’s were jam-packed with grunge and stoner rock bands. Wollongong’s Tumbleweed lead the pack in Australia, and although we haven’t heard a whole lot from them in the 2000’s, they still nail their set today. Brisbane boys, Custard get the crowd dancing next with their tongue-in-cheek tracks ‘Music Is Crap’, ‘Girls Like That (Don’t Go For Guys Like Us)’ and ‘Caboolture Speed Lab’. Lead singer, Dave Mccormack is equal parts awkward as he is enigmatic.

The time finally came for Lindsay to pick up the guitar and hit the stage with Frenzal Rhomb. Walking out to John Farnham’s ‘Take the Pressure Down’, the punk funny boys deliver a set full of classic Frenzal tracks including ‘I’m Shelving Stacks (While I’m Stacking Shelves)’ ‘When My Baby Smiles at Me I got to Rehab’ and ‘Bucket Bong’. Jay dedicates a song “To all the Spiderbait fans up the back who probably didn’t even know we were still a band”, breaking into ‘You are not my friend’. They wrap the set up perfectly with ‘Never Had So Much Fun’.

As the sun goes down, Hunter’s & Collector’s Mark Seymour takes the stage with his band, The Undertow. With an extensive catalogue of hits like Seymour’s, you can easily kick off your set with ‘Holy Grail’ and ‘Do you See What I See’, drawing the crowd in immediately. Seymour and his incredibly tight band bless us with an impressive set full of hits, finishing things off with ‘Throw Your Arms Around Me’, setting off a sea of arms around shoulders in chorus with each other.

The youngest band on the bill today, Jebediah, serve up one of the most energetic sets of the day. The W.A. 4-piece surprise the crowd (and possibly even themselves) with some pyrotechnics during their 90’s teenage anthem ‘Leaving Home’. They cover most of the tracks off their ’97 debut album ‘Slightly Odway’ including ‘Teflon’, ‘Harpoon’ and ‘Jerks of Attention’.

It’s hard to believe Something for Kate’s ‘Beautiful Sharks’ album was released 20 years ago this month. Paul Dempsey welcomes the crowd to 2019-98, playing ‘Electricity’ and ‘Hallways’ from the album. Dempsey is an incredibly intriguing front man, weaving his lyric heavy songs ‘Pinstripe’, ‘Captain’, and ‘Monsters’ with a soaring cover of the Calvin Harris/Florence & the Machine hit ‘Sweet Nothing’.

As the night draws near its end, it leaves just the final act: Spiderbait. Walking out on stage, Kram instantly gets the crowd engaged by instigating a chant of ‘Heyyyy-oooohhh’. A crowd that’s been drinking all afternoon is easily lost, but Kram reigns them in instantly, not an easy feat for someone perched behind a drum-kit towards the back of the stage. Janet gets her fair share of moments to shine with ‘Outta My Head’ ‘Fuckin Awesome’ and ‘Calypso’. The crowd goes wild as the band closes their set with Black Betty.

Every band on the line-up delivered incredible sets. Nobody felt tired or outdated (until the hangover hit the next day, I’m sure). Despite the cold weather at night, it was nice to have a festival in winter rather than a sweltering Queensland summer day. The real upside to the cooler weather, was the fact that those old band shirts (the ones that still fit) remained in place, hiding the ‘dad bods’ they now cover. Spring Loaded wasn’t just a celebration of the music that was, but the music that’s still to come, with most of the bands still releasing music. Proving age is just a number. And music is forever.

Check out the photo gallery below:

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