Thursday, March 7, 2013

My Bloody Valentine

My recent solo trip to Melbourne has given me plenty of things to write about, and rightfully so. It was the first time I went back to Australia since the end of my Brisbane stay back in 2009. But let's save that for another time. The main reason I went there and spent stupid amount of money that was going to fund my dream amp - Twin Reverb - was to see one of my favorite bands of all time : My fucking Bloody Valentine.

Not in order : 
1. Fugazi
2. Dinosaur. Jr
3. Sonic Youth
4. My Bloody Valentine
5. Unwound

This is a list of "Bands I Need to See Before I Die" that I mentally made back around 2007. Back then, the list seemed pretty impossible. I did get to see Dinosaur Jr in 2008/2009 and Joe Lally solo show (probably the closest thing I'll get to Fugazi, somehow missed The Evens a few years ago argh!). My chance of seeing Unwound has always been less than zero percent. Now that Sonic Youth is taking a hiatus, I doubt that i'll get to see them as well.

It is worth noting that back then My Bloody Valentine was still 'inactive', so when I heard about their tour to Australia, i pretty much lost it. I was originally going to see them at All Tomorrow Party, but that thing sold out in like five hours. Hope was not all lost because they did announce their side shows a few weeks later.

I had browsed through the internet to see their setlist for ATP and Japan tour, and the Melbourne show was pretty much the same with different song order. It's a good mix of Isn't Anything (would've been more awesome if they had played Sueisfine though), Loveless, and songs of their EPs. They played one track of the new record, New You. I actually expected them to play more since I am quite fond of the new album. 

Earplugs were handed out at the door and that was enough to make me all giggly inside when entering the venue. I was there pretty early in hope of getting some merch or records. I can't tell you how disappointed I was over the fact that they didn't have any records with them. Total bummer. I'd love to get a copy of 'm b v'.

My Bloody Valentine was glorious. Kevin Shield's guitar, as you would expect was about twice as louder as the other instruments. Even the frantic drumming was no match for it. I saw a double stack of Marshalls and a few Fender combos behind Mr. Shields, perhaps some Vox too, I'm not too sure. Although it was weird hearing all the pre-recorded synth lines, Kevin Shield's guitar tone was pretty magical to my ears. The big, processed swirling guitar was there, banging at my ear drums and it was lovely.

The vocals were really low in the mix, causing them to be a bit inaudible. I don't know if this was intentional or not. Belinda pretty much stayed on her spot the entire night and didn't say much bar a few words through her microphone. She looked amazing as always. By midway through MBV's set, it was pretty much impossible to move around because well, every inch of floor was filled with people. 

There was no encore and MBV closed their set with 'Your Made Me Realise', complete with the extended 10-minute noise part. I have to admit that it got pretty fucking loud at some points where I kinda had to cover my ears with my hands. At no point throughout the show did I put on the earplugs. Fuck earplugs. It's pretty amazing how my ears were not ringing after the show. Maybe it was not loud enough heh.

In conclusion, the show was definitely worth the trip. It was a sonic experience, quite like no others. It would've been nice if they had changed up the setlist a bit and surprised us (Sometimes, maybe?) but I guess it's hard when you're playing a dozen shows on tour. They were probably the second loudest band i've seen, just slightly behind Dinosaur Jr. 

Thanks to Andrew, Lee, Steph, Madrim and Bianca for making the trip possible.

A few videos that I took myself : 

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