"The wheels are definitely off."
It's Tasmania's answer to Poison City's Weekender. A three-day punk festival in the heart of Launceston filled with bands, banter and plenty of beer.
Organised by the proudest Tasmanians in the business, Luca Brasi, the weekend was sure to be a banger. Partying on a school night was in full swing with Launceston's own Bansheeland kicking things off on Thursday night. The growing crowd was well warmed up when another local band, The Sleepyheads took to the stage after returning from touring. The crowd was intimate and the beers were already flowing freely as everyone beamed with local pride.
Sydney band Endless Heights brought their A-game for the first show of their national tour. They dedicated songs to their "brothers", the Luca Brasi boys, and the whole room was having a solid boogie. Hobart's Maddy Jane was up next, warming up ahead of her shows as Harry Style's Australian support. She played tracks old and new and made sure the crowd was having a good time while taking care of the safety of those around them.
Up next was the main event, Luca Brasi, and they did not disappoint. The boys always put on nothing short of a brilliant time and this was no exception. They expressed their extreme gratitude for everyone coming out and for sticking by them from the beginning. Their Like A Version cover of How To Make Gravy prompted a solid singalong and, of course, the gig would not be complete without crowd surfers and flying beer cans — although they made sure the gig rules were followed and that everyone felt safe. What a way to kick off the weekend!
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After a big night, we were back for round two on Friday. The hair of the dog is the only way to get through weekends like this, and boy, didn't everybody know it. There weren't many hands missing a Boags Red can and the good vibes were still going strong when Launceston band ISLA KA took to the stage to get the party started.
Dear Seattle came all the way from Sydney to share their tunes with the ever so appreciative Tasmanian crowd. Melbourne duo IV League were up next, making sure everyone stayed amped for the rest of the night's proceedings. There was a lot of excitement when Bad//Dreems took to the stage, playing a cheeky gig before their return to the Apple Isle for Falls Music & Arts Festival over New Year's. The boys put on a brilliant show as per usual, playing crowd favourites such as Mob Rule, Dumb Ideas and Cuffed & Collared. The crowd got around the Adelaide boys, giving them a big old Tassie welcome.
Melbourne's Camp Cope were the final act of the night, making everyone feel loved, safe and all warm and fuzzy. They constantly reminded the crowd to take care of each other, keep their hands to themselves and respect the space of those around them. The second night was a huge success and everyone went home feeling pretty stoked for the next day.
The third and final day was not to be missed. Daytime acoustic gigs helped ease thumping heads with sweet sounds from various local artists and an appearance from Ceres' Tom Lanyon. Everyone eased into the day gently, preparing for the night that lay ahead. When the acoustics were done and dusted, it was back to the Workers Club for more beers and a whole lot of boogying.
Jess Locke warmed things up before Milhouse got front and centre. Ruby Fields was back for the second time in two months after coming off a tour with ARIA award winning Gang Of Youths. The crowd was amped yet respectful, as had been the running theme of the weekend, with everyone feeling safe within their surroundings.
When notorious party fiends The Bennies took over the stage, with frontman Anty Horgan rocking his trademark tights, the sold-out room went wild. They played banger after banger, bringing so much energy and life to the room that people left saying it was the most fun they'd ever had at a gig. The night finished up with Wedding Pingers putting on a show into the early hours of the morning before Luca Brasi came back for a full-on DJ set.
The weekend had come to an end once more, and everyone left feeling extremely heavy-hearted (heavy heads too in most cases) but ready to do it all again. A massive thanks goes out to Luca Brasi's Tyler Richardson and Patrick Marshall for putting on such a safe, welcoming and enjoyable weekend for everyone. It was a wild ride and until next year, the wheels are definitely off.