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Review: Good Things Festival Brisbane

Good Things Festival – Brisbane 2018

Artist: Good Things Festival
Date: 9th December 2018
Venue: RNA Showgrounds, Brisbane
Reviewer: Hear2Zen Magazine
Photographers: Andrew Treadwell – Hang Me On Your Wall Photography
                                 Hayley Treadwell – Jayde Lotus Photography

The lack of a good rock festival in Australia has been evident over the last few years. Its been a summer tradition for a long time coming. The fans ask and ask and ask. They got their answer earlier in the year with the announcement of the first Good Things Festival with stops in Melbourne, Sydney, and Brisbane, and some side shows here and there.

You know what I love about festivals? Variety! You know what I have hated about festivals? The aggression. In the past for some reason, the patrons spent their hard earn money, it seemed to just be aggressive and make the day horrible. Good Things ticked the boxes for variety, but also, the chill factor in the crowd was amazing. I saw people from all walks of life coming together to enjoy themselves and enjoy the music. It was such a great vibe.

Good Things Festival – Brisbane 2018

Now it’s almost impossible to see all the bands at a festival, but if you plan your day out correct you can come pretty damn close. We were extremely lucky to have a few of our team on the ground to bring you some highlights of the day. Of course the headliner was Offspring, playing their 6 x Platinum selling album “Smash” in full. But let’s rewind to the beginning of the day.

The privilege of kicking off the day on the main stages went to Brisbane’s own “Stateside”. They didn’t have a lot of time to impress but thats what they did. Front woman Erin Reus, had the crowd on her side from the first note. They are certainly a band to watch. While over on Stage 4 “Ecca Vandal” also got things moving, with a sizeable crowd for such an early slot in the day.

Simple things at this festival really made it great, plenty of facilities, water stations, phone charging stations and a good selection of food and bars. It is nice to have those things available to the crowd and you could tell it was appreciated. Many of the artists also made appearances at the signing tent, which had a healthy stream of people all day, and special mention to the awesome dudes in “Palaye Royale” who not only smashed out an awesome set on stage 3 but then mingle in the crowd, taking photos, jumping on Face Time calls, and just talking to fans. They were a great bunch!

Good Things Festival – Brisbane 2018

“Void Of Vision” and “Waax” made use of every minute of the short sets, and are one’s to watch out for in the future. Both played like that had nothing to lose and everyone to win, and the reception they received shows they will be making their way up the ladder into much bigger set times for sure.

“Waterparks” are a bunch of fun. They are an upbeat mix of punk and and they had die hards and new fans on both side of the centre stage barrier singing along at times, louder than the band. They then made way for fire, confetti, and enough raw energy and power to light a city. The band responsible……”Northlane”. I had never seen these Melbourne lads before, and honestly I cannot wait to see them again. Don’t get me wrong, the show is amazing, but they back themselves with great songs, playing and stage presence. They are the real deal and a force to be reckoned with.

The beauty of festivals like Good Things is the diversity. You can bounce between the 4 stages at your leisure and sample a little bit of every band or hang for the whole set of your favourite. We did our best to sample from all stages, and got to see great bands like “Make Them Suffer” who have the calming harmonies of Booka Nile, to the out and out ferocity of Sean Harmanis. We also grabbed a taste of “The Wonder Years” on stage 3 and “La Dispute” on stage 2

One of the most anticipated sets was the Brisbane debut of “Baby Metal”. They are highly choreographed, but definitely paint by numbers. Stage 1 crowd was filled to the brim, and that spilled over to the grounds of Stage 2. It seemed that everyone got in early in the day to check out this new phenomenon in Metal. It’s really not for everyone, but who am I to judge when you have huge crowds of locals and people who have travelled all over the world to see them.

Adopted Aussies “The Used” followed on Stage 2, with Bert McCracken delivering as usual. He is one of the most enjoyable singer to watch as is the whole band, as you never know what you are going to get. Brisbane was treated to “The Play School Theme”, “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, all blended in with hits like “Box Full Of Sharp Objects” and the straight up legendary “Pretty Handsome Awkward”.

Not to be outdone “Bullet For My Valentine” waste no time in going for the jugular with “Don’t Need You”, “Over It” and “Your Betrayal” straight out of the gate. Their lead guitarist is was certainly happy to ham it up for all the waiting photographers and seemed to really get a kick out of some of the poses he made and faces he pulled. Good to see someone having a great time on stage. The band touched on their entire career but their new album “Gravity” got special attention through the set. Most bands stick to greatest hits on festivals so it was nice to see Bullet showcase their new material in a non headline set.

I haven’t seen “Tonight Alive” in nearly 4 years so I was so happy to catch some of their set. Jenna is not only underrated as a front woman, but as a vocalist. Their 9 song set had no let up and they decimated Stage 3 by about song 5. Cannot wait to see them again. One of Australia’s best, in my opinion.

At Hear2Zen we always take suggestions from our friends and readers, and one of the bands we kept hearing that were a do-not-miss, were “Dropkick Murphy’s”. After about 30 seconds of the first song it’s easy to see why. What a great time they are. The crowd become part Irish Wake, Part Rowdy Soccer Crowd. Its non stop, high energy, in your face pub rock, on steroids. I see why they are so well regarded. I’m sure the chorus of “The Boys Are Back” could be heard being sung two towns over. I’ll be checking them out next headline tour for sure. Quickly running back to Stage 4 we also catch the guys in “Mayday Parade” who deliver a great set but a confusing choice of cover in “Somebody That I Used To Know” by Gyote.

“All Time Low” are up on Stage 1, which is a deserved spot for them, I have seen them go from a small band playing on the stage 7 and 8’s to taking on the larger slots and delivering. They are regular visitors to Australia and their fanbase just keeps growing and growing, and beyond having great catchy songs like “Backseat Serenade”, “Lost In Stereo” and “Kids In the Dark”, they have a connection and respect for their fan that take them to a different level. Their growth is no fluke and Im sure it will continue.

Our most awaited set is up next, “Stone Sour”. This band is just in a league of their own. Corey Taylor, Josh Rand, Roy Mayorga, Christian Martucci, and Johny Chow are just a wrecking ball. From the opening notes of “Taipei Person/Allah Tea” to the closing ones of “Fabuless”, it’s an 11 song ass kicking of epic proportions. Taylor takes command with a solo rendition of “Bother” that just brings chills, and our personal favourite “Song #3” takes on a new meaning as you see him singing it to his girlfriend who is watching side stage and you know he means every word. We were kicking ourselves we missed their headlining show, as the band is in heavy rotation in the Hear2Zen offices. The Brisbane show was also one of the last for Christian Martucci as he is off to join Black Star Riders while Taylor returns to Slipknot.

After this there was only one place to go. Stage 1. “Offspring” playing “Smash” in its entirety. released in 1994 the album has sold over 6 million copies and spawned hits like “Come Out And Play”, “Self Esteem” and “Gotta Get Away”. It also propelled the band to a household name and set the groundwork for their longevity. As promised the band played the album in its entirety, and after a short intermission, return to go to the next level. Classics like “All I Want” “Pretty Fly (For A White Guy)”, and “Why Don’t You Get A Job” get a thunderous reception, but that is nothing compared with the crowds response to a chilling version of “Gone Away” with Dexter playing it solo at a piano. What a great rendition. Where to go from here you ask? Offspring drives it on home with a cover of “Whole Lotta Rosie” by AC/DC, which is way more of a punk song than a rock song so it suited them fine. Might I add, the band were joined on this run by Tony Kanal from “No Doubt” on Bass, and wow, what an amazing addition to the band.

So you ask was Good Things Festival a good thing, our answer. No! IT WAS A GREAT THING! We cannot wait to see where it goes from here. Bring on Good Things 2019! We would like to thank Destroy All Lines and Dallas Does PR for all the support, and to all of the bands and the fans on the day, thanks so much for making it one to remember.

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