Last week, The Growlers graced Sydney’s shores with a show at The Roller Den in Erskineville. By a stroke of great fortune (aka my employment at Monster Children), I had already spent some time with The Growlers earlier that very morning. Doing what, you ask? It’s super top secret. CIA sort of stuff, you wouldn’t understand.
Plus, if I told you, that would blow our content surprise in a few weeks time. And then what good would our website be? So, anyway, it was a super fun morning with a bunch of legends from one of my favorite bands. At the end of the super top-secret thing I can’t talk about yet, we went our separate ways. I myself have always, always been a hugger, both in greeting and farewell. For some reason that only the gracious lord of the skies above us will ever know, I, this very morning, kooked it. Brooks Nielsen, singer and leading eccentric of The Growlers, said “Thanks for today!”, and I extended my arm and with the blokiest of handshakes, said “Thanks, a lot, mate.” To help with a visual of this incident, I am a 5’4” petite female with more freckles than it’s candied namesake, and wrists the width of a kebab skewer. He frowned and nodded, while the rest of the band proceeded to hug me goodbye. For one brief moment I entertained the idea of 360-ing back to Brooks and going in for round 2, but alas, the opportunity had evaporated along with any sense of cool I had earlier possessed.
So, I spent most of The Growlers set at The Roller Den kicking myself for the aforementioned kook, and hoping that somehow after the show I could correct my error. Brooks on the other hand, remained unfazed. You know how I know? Two reasons: One, he probably had already forgotten both my name and knowledge of my birth no longer than 5 minutes after our disastrous farewell, and two, because he pranced around that stage like he’d never bore so much as the weight of a single feather on his shoulders in his entire life. And they are big shoulders; I actually seriously wonder what he presses?
Through all the new hits of their 2014 release, Chinese Fountain, to gems of yesteryear’s Gilded Pleasures and Hung At Heart, The Growlers had the crowd in the palms of the very same hands I uncharacteristically shook earlier that day. What’s so great about The Growlers’ live performance is how raw and distinctive Brooks’ vocals sound live, and their shared kookiness on stage. They gyrate and writher around, but in a sort of slow-motioned, unenergised way. Like if a really stoned koala got electrocuted. They just sort of bop from side to side while their garage surf rock riffs jolt everyone else into grease lightning style dance moves. Did you just read that last paragraph? Seeing The Growlers is like seeing a stoned koala bop nonchalantly while a crowd of surfers dance like John Travolta in a blockbuster movie. Worth seeing for yourself, I reckon. Here’s where you can still catch them in the flesh before they head back to the States:
Wednesday 21 January 2015: Great Northern Hotel, Byron Bay, NSW, Australia
Thursday 22 January 2015: Coolangatta Hotel, Gold Coast, QLD, Australia
Friday 23 January 2015: The Triffid, Newstead, QLD, Australia
Saturday 31 January 2015: The Studio, Auckland, New Zealand