Cool Band/Hindely/Mugwumps/The Wheelers Of Oz
Thursday, June 11, 2015
Four acts went head to head on Thursday night, bringing their A game to the stage in a valiant battle to crawl their way onto the next rung of the Big Splash ladder, at the top which precariously balances a bucket filled with $10,000 in cash.
Irreverent rockers Cool Band hit it hard and fast, bringing a lot of energy and skill to the table as they ripped through a quick series of piss-takers with titles like I Hate Mum. They’re a lot of fun and any band who not only uses two drummers but uses them well is always worth your attention, but the tool cool for school posturing does wear thin after a while. It’d be good to see them put some effort into their lyrics, but that might go against the whole point of the exercise.
Hip hop exponent Hindley struggled to win the crowd, who seemed to on board for traditional guitar-centric entertainment but not so much down for anything outside that paradigm. Hindley’s rhymes are ferocious and structurally complex, but his impact is marred by lacklustre stage presence and an enthusiasm that sometimes comes at the expense of precision.
Mugwump were the first of two bands that leaned heavily into the current resurgence of psychedelia, crafting mesmeric soundscapes redolent with hallucinatory imagery and given to long, meandering instrumental side-quests. They were followed by The Wheelers Of Oz, who not only mined a similar musical vein, but tied for Best Band Name Of The Evening. The Wheelers, whose swollen ranks barely fit on the stage, are mainlining a darkly trippy energy directly from the underside of the Summer of Love, a richly atmospheric sound that entrances even as it dances too close to the edge of pastiche.
It was a close-run thing, but in the end it was Cool Band who emerged victorious, earning a slot at the first Semi Final at the Rosemount on Friday, July 31. The next heat of The Big Splash takes place at The Odd Fellow on Thursday, June 18, with Elli Schoen, Galloping Foxleys, Mister Wolf and Psychedelic Porn Crumpets on the bill.