POND with Doctopus @ Metropolis Fremantle
Let’s first of all address the elephant in the room. Metropolis Fremantle is a weird place to see such magical music as POND. Nonetheless, the sound is usually pretty good there, and it’s a fairly big venue.
After making the pilgrimage from the eastern suburbs down to Fremantle, we caught a quick pint at the Sail and Anchor before heading into Metropolis to catch local grunge punks Doctopus. They create a psychedelia infused grunge sonic aura, in the same vein as POND but a little dirtier and more aggressive. Vocally they range from slacker drawl through to a Kings of Leon-esque desperation especially on 'Wobbegong' and 'Wobbegong Reprieve'.
POND's stage setup is some kind of nightmare for roadies. Surely. From Gum’s 20ft long guitar pedal setup, Allbrook’s kazoo and flute and Shiny Joe Ryan’s afro I am still miffed as to how they all got up on that stage. Anyway, they opened up the set with a slew of new cuts from their 2013 triumph Hobo Rocket whilst also mixing in older favourites like 'Betty Davis' of Frond fame and also a new tune from upcoming album Man, It Feels Like Space Again.
POND, as a live animal, give a lot to the audience. When frontman Nick Allbrook isn’t wide-armed screaming to the crowd he is throwing himself around, writhing on the floor in the sweat dripping from his oh-so-Fremantle flanno. Shiny Joe and Gum ad to the asthetic as well, and Cam Avery's swagger on the stage is sublime.
That POND have been able to carve out a name for themselves seperate to Tame Impala is not surprising after seeing their live show. They are a completely different. Whilst the later play a subdued psych-pop blend, POND play a much more rockin’ roast of beans, weaving throughout subdued subtle building jams through to full on riff heavy Disreali Gears era Cream cacophony.
'You Broke My Cool' got super personal, the whole band seeming to implode upon itself lef my their frontman, whose facial expressions seemed to reflect pain, but whose words brought so miuch joy to those in the pit singing along.
'Xanman', accompanied by a green morphsuited struttin’ dude, was a set highlight up until 'Midnight Mass', the set closer left me feeling ill, which built into it’s amazing instrumental crescendo with each member leaving the stage after their piece of feedback jam was added to the mix.