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Live Review: Blind Girls Get Sweaty At AHEPA Hall

Updated: Feb 2


All photos by Angie @64-Pit

West End's AHEPA Hall undertook the valiant task of hosting the Anti-Dismal MiniFest last Friday, with gretchlings of all ages taking to the floor. In-between flying ninja kicks and circle pits, we saw seven bands perform across six sweltering hours. The entire street was filled with 300 heads of darkened hair, with the kids loitering out the front & the adults smoking ciggies out the back. We saw everything from pillow fights, cops, paramedics and technical difficulties on the radar, but nothing could hold down the hardcore. Let's jump into it, with a cheeky interview and photo gallery at the end.



First up was Maniakal, up and coming ne'er-do-wells who get the crowd moving. They set the tone for the evening and went hard. Sunday Service was second, delivering clean vocals but still packing an edge. The singer had springs in their shoes and rockets in their lungs. The venue was hot & bothered and there was no air-conditioning or operating fan in sight. Kudos to all the kiddlywinks that slugged it out in the 40-degree inferno. Bonus props for the experimental dance moves they whipped out, and 10 points to Gryffindor for that kid that wore a traffic cone on his head for 6 consecutive hours.



Neuroticist was up next, with chunky guitars plopping on the floor. Then came Entrapment, with hilarious audience interaction. Zuko was fifth, with mangled string slashes and comedy antics. Outside, the cops were chasing off crackheads and the ambulance was collecting dehydrated teens. Heat exhaustion was a real threat inside, but the kids were all hopped up on raspberry juice and the adults were drinking one door down at The Bearded Lady. Huge street cred to the legendary ice guy, delivering frosted goodness to the mummified husks on the D-floor.



Virtues was where we saw masterful stagecraft, with their power cutting out and a laugh riot in hot pursuit. The sound dies and the drummer goes full freak-mode for 2 minutes, while the singers & guitarists rip out the most hilarious hyperbolised mimed stage-moves you've ever seen. It is really a testament to the power of percussion, because the crowd MOVES harder than ever. Incredible audience interaction, with singer & audient united in acapella. A stage diver massacres a girl, with his fall elegantly broken by her head. She's pulled aside and he's made to make a public apology before the metal can recommence. Someone ripped out the manchester & pillow fights ensue. The venue is peppered in pillow fluff and converted into a winter wonderland film set.



Finally, at 11 PM, Kingscliff warriors, BLIND GIRLS take to the stage. The audience runs rampant, with headbangs, throwdowns and emo fringes slicing the air. Classic hardcore shenanigans, with mic-grabs galore & the singer in the pit. Despite the microphone not cooperating, the crowd still gets a healthy dose of cathartic breakdown, with guitar & banshee shriek piercing eardrums and melting hearts. Hands in the air, fluff on the floor and sweat in our eyes as the night comes to a close.



We were lucky enough to catch up with Sharni & Julian from the band before their long haul back to the Gold Coast:


Yo, Hayden Mills here reporting for LiveWire. Chillin' here with Blind Girls - who've I got guys?

S: "I'm Sharni"
J: "This is Sharni Brouwer, and this is Julian. On guitar."
S: "Julian Currie."

Ooooooooo fuck yes, okay okay okay. Do you guys think there should be more all-ages gigs?

S: "Definitely."
J: "I think so."
S: "If they have aircon."
J: "Sharni's shaking her head, but I said yes." (laughs)
S: "Nooo - I think if they have aircon. Definitely." (laughs)

Yeah that was a big problem tonight, right? But everything that could happen, happened tonight. We had pillow fights, we had ambulance, we had police, right? It's a good gig. All-ages gig is where shit happens, right? It's like INSANE. Like people are movin' around, everything that could happen, happened.

J: "Yes. Yeah! A lot happened." (laughs)
S: "It was fun!"
J: (laughs) "Yes!"
S: "We love it."


What's your favourite song of the night, do you reckon? Performing OR viewing?

J: "Oh. (laughs) There was a lot of covers tonight... Yeah actually, which was kind of fun."
S: "The Turnstile cover!"

Yeah people were movin'! Yeah, Rage Against the Machine.

J: "Yeah, I don't know if we didn't get the memo... And didn't know to do a cover, because I think we were the only band who didn't do one" (laughs)
S: "Yeah, we didn't do one."
J: (laughs) "Um is there a group chat that we weren't in?

Yeah they're conspiring against us all, ya know?



My favourite song was the acapella and the drums. Everyone was dancin' for like 5 minutes. When the power goes out, that's when the gig actually happens. It goes to show, you need drums for the heaviness, right?

J: (laughs) "Yeah, that was planned. That power-out. I saw it on their set-list."

Genius!

S: "It was so funny, the power was out for our whole set.

Oh yeah, I saw that. But you were in the crowd man! You were movin' around, ya know? It's all about audience engagement, because you share energy with them. They pump you up and they pump you up, ya know?

J: "I thought you just dropped a contact down there. And you were just lookin' around for it."
S: (laughs)

Do you have to wear glasses?

S: "I do but I don't."

If you don't have them, is it better if the crowd is blurry, or no?

S: (laughs) "...Yeah" (laughs)

Yeah fuck yeah. So, you guys drivin' all the way back to the fuckin' Goldie tonight?

J: (gravely) "Yes, we are."

Brutal, brooootal. I'll wish you guys a good night, and good luck!

J: "Yeah thanks"
S: (laughs)

Massive shout out to Blind Girls for the 5-second interview. Hope you drove swiftly and safely, because we were all so completely cooked. Thanks to all the bands involved, it was a beautiful night. Very steamy. Great for the pores. A massive thank you to Angie for the photos, this article wouldn't be possible without you. I saw you get kicked in the head. Give yourself a pat on the back and 50 gold stars for capturing the raw fury in incredible detail. Shout out to AHEPA Hall for hosting the event, and sorry for the fluff.


All-ages gigs are where we grow the next crop of heavy freakazoids, and we need to get more events & safe-spaces for the younglings to express themselves. It's not possible without venues, organisers & bands like this that are willing to blow some minds and put on a gig of this magnitude for the kids. Hardcore lives.


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FOLLOW Sunday Service | Facebook | Instagram

FOLLOW Neuroticist | Instagram | Website

FOLLOW Entrapment | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Youtube | Website

FOLLOW Zuko | Facebook | Instagram | TikTok | Website

FOLLOW Virtues | Facebook | Instagram | Youtube | Website

FOLLOW Blind Girls | Facebook | Instagram | Spotify | Bandcamp | Website

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Gallery - Photos by 64-Pit:

Maniakal:



Sunday Service:



Neuroticist:



Entrapment:



Zuko:



Virtues:



Blind Girls:



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