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Live Review: The Growlers, The Babe Rainbow, Donny Love

2 February 2015 | 10:14 am | Stephanie Oakes

The Growlers' set won over some more Aussie fans

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Sticking to the Australia Day long weekend theme, including cork hats, red tins and unfaltering patriotism, both local support bands were the perfect choices for starting off the gig with some homegrown talent.

Making the two-hour trek up the coast from the Goldy were four youngsters from Donny Love, a super-cool group of guys whose stoner vocals and jangly guitar riffs started things off with a bang. Imagine them sounding like the younger going-through-puberty version of The Growlers. They were oozing cool from the get-go and kicking the music off only just after the sun had set put all the punters in a happy, high and dazey mood from early on. Listen out for these boys in the future.

With maybe the best band name to come out of an Aussie band in probably forever, (only second to pals from King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard) were The Babe Rainbow. Yes, The Babe Rainbow are as fucking majestic as their name sounds. With blonde shaggy hair and beards and a surfy lo-fi punk sound, they’ve been scoring some sweet support slots recently; Ty Segall and Moses Gunn Collective to name a couple. Full crowd interaction is the foundation of a good show and they had it down pat. Getting through recently-released tracks like Planet Junior and Secret Enchanted Broccoli Forest (yes, that is correct), The Babe Rainbow have their style groomed to perfection and would’ve won over a few hundred new fans during this tour.

The Growlers emerged to a deafening cheer from every voice-box unanimously and wasted zero time getting into the most perfect selection of tracks. Spanning tunes plucked from all five albums kept new and old fans pleased, but it was hits such as One Million Lovers and Graveyards Full that got the swirling cesspool of a mosh in true motion. Not 30 seconds passed without an attempted stage invasion and there were always at least one pair of torn-up Connies crowd-surfing above eye level. Lead Growler Brooks Neilson never stopped his famous slumbery bop and shoulder wiggle and was the lead crusader in treating every Sunshine Coast fan to an incredible gig. Their own self-appointed beach goth style has carried through to their most recent album, Chinese Fountain, which is more polished than its predecessors but still has the original Growlers feel that dedicated fans have grown to love.

Despite their ability to sell out American and European tours with ease, The Growlers haven’t quite cracked the Aussie market yet. But with this perfectly-timed summer down under tour, maybe the Californians have gotten one step closer to that recognition in this country they rightfully deserve.