With Dragstrip and Addendum, at Bar Bodega Wellington October 24th 2003
Arriving at a gig at 9:30pm and then having to wait 2 hours before the bands start is always a bit hard to keep enthusiasm for, but tonight, the headliners were worth the delay.
The opening act, a soloist, by the name of Dragstrip, was quite straining. Almost putting me off completely. He spoke over rambling guitar in an angst-ridden tone trying to create a storyteller style. It just didn’t work.
Thankfully, following him was a three piece by the name of Addendum. Their raw ambient sound scape filled Bodega, attracting the crowd who was sitting round either drinking at the back or watching the rugby to turn around and listen.
The one thing noticeable with Addendum is that even though their songs had steady and even flow, the expression on the face of the drummer and the guitarist was sometimes one of surprise directed at the keyboard/vocalist. Giving the impression they didn’t really know what was going on, either way, if that’s the case musically, they covered it up well.
Finally, after midnight, Sleepers Union took the stage. Oozing professionalism you’d expect from these veteran musicians, they played flawlessly. Sleepers Union’s live band, a 5 piece looked a little cramped on the reasonably small Bodega stage. Keyboardist, Mark Anderson was mostly hidden behind everyone else, and Dave Yetton sometimes looked uncomfortable standing centre stage. A cramped condition aside, every song was seamless. Of note was the sublime “Psilocybin Boy”, with Simon McLaren’s haunting vocals soaring through the bar. The big hit of the night was the essence of the perfect pop song, “Giant Spheres”. Causing some of the older members of the crowd to really get their groove on up front. All up, a special musical experience, which is only touched upon by their album.