The drive from Auckland had been long, but the constant rain had led to a reduction in traffic, which made the drive to Tauranga very pleasant. Heading into Totara St, the weather clearly had no plans on changing, luckily the venue had invested in some covers to protect the punters from being lashed by rain in the outer areas.
A reasonable sized venue, with both a mezzanine and floor level, two stocked bars and a kitchen, the site was well prepared for the evenings festivities. Doors opened early due to the large number of artists on the bill, and shortly after 6pm, the opening band took to the stage.
You know it is going to be a big night when the rock crowd legend, a.k.a. the dancing man, a.k.a. the Nambasa guy, a.k.a. Bazza, or simply Barry, is in attendance. So for this review I’m going to go ahead and add a 0-10 “Barry Dancing factor” score to each act, to help you visualise whether Barry was completely motionless (0), up to slow dancing with some fancy footwork (4), all the way up to Barry’s full “windmill” dance (10)
Second headliner, and second Auckland act to perform, was Coridian. After The Eternal Sea, much of the crowd was back at the bars, and chatting amongst themselves, so when Birth of Symmetry started to play over the PA system, the crowd continued to chat and drink, unaware that the band was emerging on stage. Perhaps they needed a longer length of silence before beginning the track to indicate that the set was starting would have helped, but it was largely always going to be a risky move starting the set with a recording of a song officially released only 3 days prior. Not the sort of band to let that affect them, they charged into Nonetheless.
Immediately, (having reviewed them a number of times before) you can tell they have been working on their movements on stage. No longer the static performing band (with the exception of Dity, who has always been the energetic core of the group), they have started getting used to moving with the songs, and it shows in that the crowd started moving too. With only a couple of incorrect notes and technical mishaps, their performance was competent, and it could be seen in the crowd. Several women dancing at the front, the crowd further back remained thick with nodding heads, and the bar remained empty; a sure-fire sign, that while they may not be familiar with the songs, they are being enjoyed, and have their full attention.
BARRY DANCING FACTOR: 10. The first clean sweep for the night comes from Coridian. During the hooks, Barry was in full windmill mode, and loving every minute of it.