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Schwet with HTRK + Jabu + Robbie & Mona
June 17 @ 7:30 pm – 11:30 pm
Very proud to welcome the downtempo icons themselves: HTRK (HateRock). A sister-show of sorts to the CS & Kreme one a couple weeks prior, an evening of low-key high-romance…
In simplistic terms, HTRK are the figureheads of the hugely influential Melbourne scene. For nearly 20 years they have mined the depths of narcotic, sexual and nocturnal energies, gaining the attentions of genuinely legendary artists such as Rowland S Howard and Mika Vainio (RIP!) with whom they both collaborated. Their 5th LP ‘Rhinestones’ casts a distinctly new direction, gobbling up Neil Young, Robbie Basho and “trading their minimal-wave roots for unexpected forays into gothic country”. Boomkat went as far as to crown it their #1 release of 2021.
“An intimate blend of elegiac synth music, slowcore rhythms, and flushed-cheek vocals. Still throbbing with sadness, their dramatically layered sound has grown lighter, gentler, and more inviting with each release. On Rhinestones, HTRK peel back even more layers, further revealing the fragile heart at the center of their music. Vocalist Jonnine Standish’s wispy poetry drapes over ephemeral textures as if she’s whispering a devastating secret in the form of a lullaby. The album plays like a heartbreaking country ballad’s matte-black underside, capturing the desperate solitude of a freshly bruised heart.” – Pitchfork
They aren’t a couple per se, but HTRK do cite ‘friendship’ as they primary muse. The rest of our acts do in-fact feature the romantically entwined (purely coincidentally). Jabu are Avon’s hypno-loop masters, sucking up R’n’B, shoegaze, lovers rock and soul into a caramel-gloop we can’t help but tag ‘Lovers-Gaze’. We were particularly enamored with their ’21 ‘Versions’ tape, a collection of dubbed-to-high-hell versions. Or as they perfectly put it “We have Angelo Badalamenti meets King Tubby at home”…
On warm-up duties are the hot young things Robbie & Mona, an Avonian industrial-noir couple-duet. Their debut LP ‘EW’ sold out in a flash and upon witnessing them live, I was baffled at how the songs sounded at the same time both more accessible and more experimental than on record.
Cocteau Twins, Tropic of Cancer, The KVB, Bowery Electric, Pan Sonic, A.R. Kane, Space Afrika.