Live Review: Loon Lake, Cub Scouts, Glass Towers

21 August 2012 | 9:24 am | Bradley Armstrong

The young'uns have clambered into every nook and cranny of Alhambra Lounge tonight, making the temperature high with excitement levels to match, as Melbourne buzz band Loon Lake venture up to our neck of the woods for this sold out show.

First up, Sydney/Byron Bay four-piece Glass Towers play to a rather full room, however unfortunately fail to get a decent amount of attention. Their indie rock is laden with hooks and the sound comes through great, but the waning crowd interest overshadows their best efforts.

While on record they're not exactly influenced by obscure Japanese noise rock, but tonight Cub Scouts seem to be playing it safe and seem rather timid even for their radio friendly indie-pop. There's simply no edge to the performance and whilst they're undoubtedly talented in their field, in particular the vocals of timid frontman Tim Nelson, it all just feels like the band are trying to get their set under the db limit and make sure they wrap up in time to get their eight hours kip. As with Glass Towers before them, the crowd seem sadly uninterested and eager for the DJ to start playing again.

Fortunately the audience's attention span has picked up with anticipation as Loon Lake kick into gear. The band are tight from the get go, with the three-strong guitar hooks luring you in at every turn as they cover material from across the board. Vocalist Sam Nolan really drives the band, not missing a note and being a true showman. A track that just missed out on being in the Hottest 100, Bad To Me, naturally gets a very positive response from the young crowd, who sing and clap along to every beat.

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It's perhaps odd timing to plug the EP from in between songs, but it's done with a giant projection behind them saying 'buy more beer', following on from projections of skateboarders and various buildings. The inevitable Cherry Lips sees the entire band convening at the front of the stage to drive the pop gem into the heads of the youngsters. Following on and closing the set is a cover of The Darkness' I Believe In A Thing Called Love, which gets the greatest reaction of the night and while Nolan doesn't quite get to the heights of Justin Hawkins, it's still a good crack at an interesting choice for the end of an interesting night.

With the kids now dancing to the nameless DJ and taking the venue into club land, it's still great to see the number of fans who'd come out to witness this growing band, one who perhaps deserved a bigger stage to match their performance.