REVIEW: Rice is Nice Party 01.07.12

RICE IS NICE RECORDS held a little soiree over the weekend- by little, we mean fucking huge. Almost eight hours of live music later and all the indie music hipsters returned to their homes and their husbands, content, although with aching joints. My own adventure at the Annandale Hotel may not be worth elaborating upon, but I will do so anyway.

I spent all of Sunday July 1 in bed with a splitting headache and an upset stomach. I was, you guessed it, quite hungover. I had wrecked myself. I awoke some time after 4 (sorry Shady Lane and Seja). But I was determined to recover by Richard in Your Mind’s 6 o’clock set. With that in mind I did the following in no particular order: showered, carbed up with sourdough bread, attempted to rehydrate, dressed, got into a cab. I was as prepared as I would ever be.

Sure, I was still feeling ill, whilst my eyes were transfixed on Richard Cartwright and friends (SPOTTED: hooking up at the back of the room throughout The Laurels’ set), but it was worth my discomfort. Cartwright brought a dragon head leaf-blower which spat streamers, along for the party. For special. And I just don’t get tired of listening to their shoegaze tunes, as the lights fade and leave only blackened silhouettes. My favourite track involves only percussion and Cartwright singing a folk ballad about the devil (‘Satan is Real as a Rainbow’). It was played. I felt joy.

I decided to further carb up. It was only appropriate considering my circumstances (sorry Spod, but we went on an Annandale food adventure during your set). The short story goes that Crust doesn’t have any seating, that weary exercise for hungover people is less helpful than mum and dad say, and that Portuguese chicken burgers plus Gatorade are the remedy to all ills.

We were back in time for the grunge stylings of new signing, Good Heavens. Gosh they were great. Lead singer Sarah Kelly drawls through each verse, only to thrash out a grunge chorus. Let’s keep this one short and sweet; they’re a band to keep your eyes and ears out for.

So by the by, Seekae played between each set. Their DJ sets are strong and interesting but weren’t really much more than background music. People continued to order drinks, head out back to Pub Cha, and smoke cigarettes. The Annandale remained the hip venue it’s always been, with graffiti lining the walls, and all the event posters you kind of wish you could still and take home with you. And Seekae chilled the place way back down.

Donny Benet may have been very successful in the ‘80s. Maybe. I hope he’s very successful now. The guy obviously understands music. He does have talent. And he plays sleazy electro and knows exactly what he’s doing. Hipsters like irony. I think they enjoyed this and had a dance. I did too.

And finally, the main event, The Laurels. They’ve been signed. Their album was sitting on the merch table. It’s out in some stores already, but the official date is still yet to come. We know, from their live shows and from their videos, that this psychedelic/garage quartet are taking off, are a super cool bunch and will have your head thrashing around.

Mass exodus. People were tired by the time Straight Arrows came on stage. They’re a high-energy four-piece. It’s lo-fi punk with a little bit of spunk. Scratch that: a lot of spunk. They yell and they get the crowd groovin’ and it’s fantastic. This is how to end every show. Or to get them started. Either works. This kept me awake for hours, with ‘Mind Control’ playing in my mind for the whole cab ride home…

So that’s that. Fun facts, each band we saw had one female in their group. Fucking boss job, grrls. And oh my, Rice is Nice Records have a great group of signings. They deserve some more cred for that.

Words by Hannah Story.


Hannah’s best friend describes her writing as 'like Hunter S. Thompson, except less engaging and less good.' Her boyfriend says she’s 'a good writer, but couldn’t beat Ernest Hemingway in a fight.' Apt. If you want a healthy dose of shoegaze, look no further.