at the Tote
7/2/2018 (Live Review)
If you weren’t at the Tote last Wednesday you missed out on something special. I’ve been to a bunch of Laneway sideshows over the years, but Dream Wife shone like nothing else I’ve ever seen.
Local punk band Press Club were first to play, setting a high standard for the night. Press Club are a perfect concoction of intimidating yet intriguing. Every time I see them play I wonder why they don’t have a larger following yet. Hopefully their massive Aussie tour with The Smith St Band will change things for them.
Sydney band These New South Whales followed, and they put on quite a show. They’re known for their gimmicks and they did not disappoint. The front men made a joke about how they play mostly festivals now so playing a small gig is like coming home. His strident manner meant that the crowd was unsure whether to laugh or not, only making it more hilarious. They’d even brought their own strobe lights, an uncommon occurrence for the Tote.
Fans huddled the front of the stage waiting eagerly for Dream Wife to appear, myself included. It’s been a while since I’ve been to a gig with so much excitement. Dream Wife aren’t as widely known amongst Aussie music fans compared to other international acts on the Laneway lineup (ie. Anderson. Paak), but that only made the gig even more special and intimate.
Audience members couldn’t take their shining eyes off lead singer Rakel, as they mouthed every lyrics to their debut album that only came out a week ago. Rakel mentioned that she was very excited to play at the feminist and vegan capital. The girls seemed right at home here at the Tote. I accidentally bumped in to Alice and Bella in the mosh the following night; at the same venue of course.
Dream Wife’s lyrics could easily be labeled as repetitive, yet they do not grow tiring. Loud and proud they share lyrics that demand, and need to be heard. A shared highlight of the night was when the entire band room began chanting “I am not my body; I am somebody” for what felt like an infinite moment.
Halfway through the gig Rakel announced that she couldn’t see enough of the bad bitches and that they all needed to move to the front and claim their space. Hesitantly the scattered men returned to the back of the room. It was refreshing to have a punk gig also feel like a safe space, something that I can assure you doesn’t happen very often.
Almost as a thank you to the crowd, Rakel jumped down in to the audience during their final song. It was a memorable moment being knocked around in a crowd full of strangers, yet still feeling a sense of protection and unity. I’m glad I caught Dream Wife’s first ever Melbourne gig because I have no doubt that they’ll be playing in a bigger venue when they return.
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AMNPLIFY – DB
My nickname is “The Amnplifier”. Why? Because around here my focus is on being a conduit for providing greater outcomes that people come here for. My day to day “work” is living in the moment, and I love helping others concentrate on finding their connection to themselves through their experiences.
Why start a music environment? The truth is I love music, I love writing, and I love life. I work with musicians every day, and I feel certain that I will be until they put me in the ground. I have been managing people in businesses of some sort for over thirty five years so along the way I have developed some “wisdom” from my regular and constant “observations”.
Amnplify your experience. That is what we want you to do here, and if you want to let me know why you do, or don’t, shoot me a message on Facebook.
Hope you enjoy yourself here and find something that hits you somewhere.