Chicks – October 2009
If anyone was laying bets on to see who could be chosen to charm this gloomy yet cheerful neck of the woods the odds would probably not have had good pile of winnings had they invested in the dynamic pairing of those vehemently and unapologetically wizened old geezers [The Axemen] with the relatively youthful and still bouncy and vibrant Auckland-based chick and bloke combo [The Hairdos] at the South of the South Islands premiere music venue CHICKS Hotel in Port Chalmers.
Port Chalmers, the idyllic Southern town is of course just a sunny breeze away from that mestasising brooding musical hub of the South, South Dunedin, poorer of the two Dunedins group, and allegedly the inspiration behind Gaylenetm‘s epic poem DUNEDIN.
SD, having spread its gull wings over the Octagon and smearing its majestic leaves outwards in order to imperfectly carpet the rest of the polygonal submetropolis that is Dunedin proper, or ‘the Dunedin Interface’, as hungry commuters wait to devour their buses, taxis and the famous trams and trains bustling through the hurdy-gurdy streets, the better to transport the throngs who have drawn the magic lots to go out and visit the poor cousins in the Charming Port just a stones throw away, has of course now become a touchstone for all visitors interested in getting a taste of the ‘olde’ Dunedin sound and the sights and smells of the city which at once enthralled and appalled those who uptook them in those heady days of the 80’s.
The axemen / hairdos combo has been firing up dancefloors across the island nation of nz since time immemorial (or at least for most of the year 2009) however this was the inaugural trip to the mainland for the follically annointed trio and the first visit across the rubicon of the mighty Kilmog for their adze-wielding cohorts in a number of years.
I arrived early at Chicks Hotel. That there wasn’t a stream of constant traffic heading to Port Chalmers should have been a warning.
The wait for the sound was diminished by the brewing skills of Mr Emerson. Meanwhile, people began to arrive. Familiar faces, some with familiar names. Everyone seemed to know everyone or was it just the cheerful vibe. I learnt that Kawowski and Page were one and the same and not two Stus.
A darts tournament was in progression in the smaller room.
Music I’d never heard: great support band and I’d not seen The Axemen live before. Rock and Roll sounding unrehearsed (as in unpretentious) with energy that could not be grasped. It had that untamed aspect indicating it could go in any direction. A craziness that defied the laws of physics, especially the second law of thermo dynamics. Peter Gutteridge shouted in my ear, “they sound just like they did (something incomprehensible)…chunky and with really great songs”.
I had to quit the joint early and drive back into town. Unable to drink and absorb all of the Axemen show. Wondering why there are allegedly riots in Dunedin but few places in the grey old town for Rock and Roll. Bring back the night train from Port Chalmers and bring back the Axemen.
i’ll give you the benefit of the doubt on account of your long history of some of the awesome-est rocknroll shows i ever seen, mccabe, but i do believe you were drunk
I wonder who he was up drinking with all night?
Hi, I thought I would post and inform you that your blogs layout is really screwed up on the Firefox browser. Seems to work ok on IE though. Anyways keep up the great work.
hey which firefox / platform / os are you using?
I am working in (and test in) Firefox (currenty 3.5.9) on Win XP and seems ok to me… any info would be good, ta