Brickworks Markets Gig

The whole world felt like it was melting on the last weekend of the Adelaide Festival.

That didn’t seem to bother South Australia’s Warrior musicians and singers at Adelaide’s Brickworks Markets on that hot Saturday afternoon.

People say that after the final nuclear Armageddon, when the world dissolves in smoke and flames, the only things left will be cockroaches and Keith Richards.

If their resilience on Saturday is anything to go by, there might also be a few Warriors among the ruins, clutching their smoldering guitars.

Reuben knew that if he skipped the matinee of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, he could catch the Warriors’ show and be back in time for the closing night of Lovers and Haters at Norwood Town Hall with nobody the wiser. Especially those nice people who were paying for him to cover the Festival and Womad.

The taxi ride out to the Brickworks Markets in Torrensville was quick. The roads were quiet and shimmered in the heat haze. As the taxi approached ground zero, South Road was almost
deserted. It seemed that all sensible folk were indoors to escape the blistering glare.

Clanking up the checker-plate stairs from the car park, Reuben was thankful when he entered the back door of the beer-garden to find that it was roofed over and more-or-less enclosed.

Industrial pedestal fans circulated the air and at least gave the illusion of a cooling breeze. Meanwhile the bar was doing a brisk trade and it was easy for Reuben to blend in.

Vinyl Kaos was on stage, sweat dripping and fingers flying. It was the first time Reuben has seen these guys, and hey, they were good. Some great bass lines, interesting lead guitar breaks and a solid rhythm section. And when the singer Alison launched into Pleasure and Pain, the whole audience knew what she meant.

SideFX were on next. Reuben saw these guys at Mount Barker just before Christmas. They were tight then and they kept it that way now, despite the furnace-like conditions.

Who in their right minds would get up in front of spotlights on a 100 degree day and jump about? Their terrific version of Chain of Fools took on extra meaning in the circumstances. Thank goodness for crazy people.

Jen on keyboards and Jan were both in good voice and worked well together. Even the light chaser suddenly started to work mid-set.

Next up was Wis’n Up, a classic, all-guy rock and roll band with some rock and R and B thrown in. This is the third time Reuben has seen these guys in six months. Technically they have got better and better and this set started off very promisingly. But in the middle of the set, the wheels started to fall off. Nothing too disastrous, just a few glitches from time to time that threw some of the members momentarily.

Maybe it was the heat – a case of the Summertime Blues perhaps – or the gremlins that strike all bands occasionally. Or maybe the Brickworks Ghost that the taxi driver told Reuben about decided to make his presence felt*.

Whatever it was, these guys know their stuff and were able to pull things back on track quickly, even though a couple of numbers were cut short. By the end of the set they had regrouped and were back to their usual standard, finishing with some rollicking classics.

A new group, Get Rocked, finished the show. Reuben heard this was their inaugural public performance. It sounded like they had been playing together for years. Great selection of songs spanning 40 years of rock.

Reuben particularly enjoyed their version of You Really Got Me, it brought back many memories of a golden age of rock and of youthful exuberance**.

Jackie the singer had the audience of around 60 people in the palm of her hand from the start. There were fists pumping the air, horned fingers aplenty and appreciative yells and
screams throughout.

High Voltage said it all – it was high voltage rock and roll right through a high energy set. Keep your eyes on these guys, we’re going to be hearing more of them in the future.

As the excited crowd dispersed, Reuben joined the general drift out towards South Road to wait for his taxi. On the journey back, with the sun a bit lower and the shadows a bit longer, a few more souls were out and about. Maybe they were heading out to start their evening of Festival going.

Reuben was heading to the hotel for a quick shower and change of clothes before heading out to Norwood for a bite to eat and then his paid theatre gig. He hoped his feet would stop tapping in time.

Ian’s Notes
* The Brickworks Ghost is supposed to be active when the temperature has been very high for several days. More like a poltergeist, he plays mischievous tricks on people who work there, very rarely on visitors. There are two versions of why the ghost exists. One says that it is the ghost of a worker who accidentally got trapped in the kiln during a firing. The other says it was a steeplejack or bricklayer who fell into the chimney during construction. The connection with the kiln is given as the reason for mysterious incidents occurring only during very hot periods.

** You Really Got Me entered the UK charts on 13 August 1964 at no. 34. It went to no. 1 on 10 September and stayed there the following week. That was the week Reuben and I turned 18.

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One Response to Brickworks Markets Gig

  1. Ian Short says:

    re. …in the middle of the set, the wheels started to fall off…..
    Hey, Reuben, that’s my band. I thought you were my friend!

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