The showcase was the finale to a day of talks by industry representatives from the UK and USA, including BBC radio programmers and record label reps. The format involved 6 bands playing short sets, around 25-30 minutes each, with a (supposedly) quick changeover between bands.
It was encouraging to see so many people turn out on a school night to support local music; it can only have given the foreign attendees a positive impression of the New Zealand music scene.
I really liked the idea of having a lot of bands playing in one night, but playing shorter, more focussed sets, and being able to put everything they’ve got into it. I’d seen a couple of the bands before, so was keen to see them again, and got to see 4 bands I’d never seen, although I had heard of some of them.
The only thing that let it down was the transition between bands, which was sometimes longer than the set the band had just played. I don’t know if it made much difference to the audience, although I did hear at least one complaint about it.
It’d be great to see more showcases like these – an early start and finish, some new names, and short sets full of energy.
If you’ve been to anything similar I’d be keen to hear what you thought, or your experiences. Leave a comment below.
This week I’ve been listening to:
Manic Compression by Quicksand – the underground band that should be been huge. Post-rock, before it even existed, these guys played hard, fast, catchy rock songs, almost verging on hardcore at times, before vanishing mid-90’s with nary a trace.