Music I like. #1. Gareth Liddiard.

Gareth Liddiard – Strange Tourist from Two Fish Out Of Water on Vimeo.

Liddiard has released another stark video similar to the first single off Strange Tourist, Blondin’ Makes an Omelette.

I saw Liddiard in his solo capacity for the first time at the ANU bar last week, re-invigorating my interest in his album – the mark of an engrossing performance. Firstly, a few points regarding ANU Bar, as it was my first time at the venue and also my first time at a gig in Canberra with more than 10 or so people in attendance (I’m relatively new to Canberra).

1. Canberrans (for some reason I find that term hilarious) are extremely, almost disturbingly, well-mannered at gigs.

2. The ANU Bar really is a ridiculous venue. I’ve been to a few uni venues up in Brisbane, none of which were as bizarre as ANU’s, which is literally just a cordoned-off area of the Union refectory.

Anyway, the performance was great, the album is great, and this video is great. Something about Liddiard’s music (both his solo work and with The Drones) always strikes me as being quintessentially Australian. I have a similar feeling listening to bands like The Birthday Party and Witch Hats. Both of those bands are far more acerbic than The Drones, but there is something in the aesthetic that makes my response to these bands so similar.

It got me thinking as to whether my mental association between this sort of music and ‘Australian-ness’ was something subconsciously racial. All these bands are, as far as I know, fairly anglo, playing fairly anglo music. I don’t think it is. It’s something in the music and the delivery. It’s the raw tension. Something about that strikes me as being a very Australian manifestation of art.

I might write more about this later. Others probably already have. I might be saying nothing new, but I find it interesting anyway.


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