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Music / Brisbane Festival
Brisbane Festival 2019 is ready to kick off, and they've unveiled an absolutely heaving program of incredible events spread across its three weeks. Here is a rundown of everything you'll find at The Tivoli and Riverstage.
Exploding across the city throughout September, Brisbane Festival 2019 looks to be bigger than ever, locking down a tonne of diverse, must-see events at Brisbane’s much-loved music venues The Tivoli and Riverstage.
In his only scheduled Australian performance, Canadian musician Dallas Green AKA City and Colour will help to wrap up Riverstage’s 30th birthday celebrations. Last in Australia in 2016, he’ll perform longtime crowd favourites alongside new tunes from his forthcoming sixth album – his first collection of original music in almost four years. Also known for his contributions as a singer, rhythm guitarist, and songwriter for post-hardcore band Alexisonfire, together with duo You+Me, a collaboration with Alecia Moore (P!nk), Dallas has compiled a much-celebrated catalogue of songs over the course of five studio albums, amassing a legion of fans worldwide and garnering him three Juno Awards, including two Songwriter of the Year awards. As a special treat, there will be a great view of the dazzling fireworks display that is Sunsuper Riverfire. Keep an eye out for a sensational support line-up set to be announced. City and Colour will perform at Riverstage on Saturday 28 September.
Returning with another incredible lineup, the Tivoli in the Round series gives audiences a chance to experience the Tivoli like never before. Rare, immersive, and intimate, these performances are your chance to get up close and personal with some of your favourite artists in a new way. This year, the series is even bigger – growing from three consecutive nights in 2018 to four for this year’s festival.
Kicking things off on Tuesday 17 September is Something For Kate frontman/guitarist Paul Dempsey. In his first solo Brisbane show in more than two years, Dempsey will not only perform tunes from Something For Kate’s classic, six-album back catalogue and his two solo records, but fans will also be treated to brand-new, as-yet-unreleased music from the next Something For Kate album. On Wednesday 18 September, the power duo of Tom Snowdon and Tom Iansek will bring their sonically immersive project No Mono to the stage. Showcasing music from their just-released Islands part 2 album, as well as its predecessor, get ready for a night of stunning beats. One of the first events announced for BrisFest 2019, Emma Louise will bring her critically-acclaimed and absolutely stunning album Lilac Everything to Brisbane audiences for the first time for this special In The Round session on Thursday 19 September, and finally, capping things off are psychedelic-folk dreamers Husky, who will premiere songs from their new album, alongside moments from their previous three, when they perform in the Tivoli on Friday 20 September. It all goes down at The Tivoli.
Riverstage have been a staple of the Brisbane music scene for three whole decades now, and to celebrate they’ve put together one heck of a lineup. Hot Dub Time Machine – the ultimate throwback party king – will take punters through every decade and genre – from ‘60s rock to ‘90s R&B through to today’s radio hits –with a special Riverstage Top 30 countdown. This is the way every history lesson should be delivered. Joining Hot Dub Time Machine is lineup featuring some of Brisbane’s best and brightest – pop stars Cub Sport, party starters Confidence Man, indie-rockers Last Dinosaurs and the mesmerising Clea. The party goes down on Saturday 7 September.
It’s been eight years since folk-rock heroes The Middle East parted ways, but after years of whispers, solo projects, and one-off collaborations with each other, Brisbane audiences will finally be treated to a full The Middle East show. Featuring their most-loved and enchanting songs alongside new and unreleased music, Friday 13 September is set to be a very special night at The Tivoli. The Townsville-bred group first came to mainstream attention thanks to their breathtaking singles ‘Blood’ and ‘The Darkest Side’, scoring slots on some of the world’s biggest festivals including Coachella and Glastonbury. In 2011, their debut album I Want That You Are Always Happy was an instant hit before the band suddenly called it a day. But they’re back, and we couldn’t be more stoked.
Following their fourth consecutive #1 ARIA debut with their sixth studio album, Misery, The Amity Affliction cemented themselves as one of this country’s biggest and most successful heavy bands. They added the accolade to a tremendous list of wins, including Gold and Platinum-certified albums, #1 singles, and huge national and international tours – all the while continuing to grow and expand the legion of loyal fans they’ve fostered over the last 15 years. Fresh off the back of two huge, main stage performances at Download Australia and a string of sold-out shows around the world, they are now set to bring ‘Heaven and Hell’ to Riverstage for the venue’s 30th-anniversary celebrations. They’ll be joined by Underøath, Crossfaith, Trophy Eyes, Make Them Suffer, Void of Vision, Thornhill, Pagan, Endless Heights and South East Desert Metal when they storm through the venue on Saturday 14 February.
Can we get an amen? Spend Brisbane Festival’s opening night worshipping the gods of house music when the Tivoli transforms itself into a golden home of worship set to raise its roof beyond the heavens. Australian dance music royalty Groove Terminator will reimagine his legendary ’90s music ‘House 5 DJ’ mix live onstage, with singers from the Gospo Collective and Brisbane’s Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts (ACPA). With guest vocalists and an amazing line-up of DJ legends including the likes of Paul Mac, Josh Abrahams and DJ Black Amex, The Tivoli is the only place you want to be on Friday 6 September.
They’ve been one of Australia’s most loved rock bands for the last three decades, and now one of Brisbane’s most fun outfits Regurgitator have cooked up a sugar-soaked record made especially for the youngest music lovers, and they’re bringing it to the Tivoli this Brisbane Festival. This new project sees long-time Regurgitator trio Ben Ely, Quan Yeomans, and Pete Kostic joined by the effervescent Koko direct from Planet Rainbow. Their adventurous debut album, playfully-titled The Really Really Really Really Boring Album, has already struck a chord with families around the country, having quickly climbed to #1 on the Children’s iTunes chart. The perfect way to get the kiddos involved in all the BrisFest mayhem, this one goes down at The Tivoli on Saturday 14 September and Sunday 15 September.
What’s the most you ever lost on a coin toss? – If the Coen brothers’ Texas noir thriller No Country for Old Men wasn’t already enough of a captivating watch, wait until the visceral psych-punk explosion of the Gareth Liddiard-fronted supergroup Tropical F*ck Storm join the party. Following a run of sold-out shows in Melbourne, the band will perform their original score live alongside the film screening for this year’s Brisbane Festival. While paying homage to traditional western tropes, No Country For Old Men turns the genre’s typical conventions on its head. It’s a violent, poetic, and intensely gripping tale that is perfectly matched by the sheer force of a Tropical Fuck Storm live performance. It goes down at The Tivoli on Thursday 26 September.
If you haven’t witnessed a Holy Holy show live, you are well and truly missing out. The absolute power combo of frontman Timothy Carroll’s honey vocals and guitarist Oscar Dawson’s constant trips to shredtown can only leave you in a good mood. Following two acclaimed albums in 2015’s debut When The Storm Would Come and 2017’s ARIA top-10 record Paint, Holy Holy are indeed shaking things up, shedding the guitar-heavy, indie-rock stylings they’ve become known for and instead commandeering new sonic territory. My Own Pool of Light is the biggest creative leap of their career – with soaring melodies and lush instrumental textures, its set to prove exactly why Holy Holy are one of Australia’s most popular acts. They’ll be debuting their new tunes for Brisbane fans at The Tivoli on Saturday 14 September.
We’ve clearly all been living our lives wrong, that’s why one of Australia’s most daring and unconventional comics Sam Simmons is here to set us straight, bringing his latest show 26 Things that you’ve been doing wrong to the Tivoli for this year’s Brisbane Festival. From how to stop getting sand in your bathers at the beach to how we should actually eat a chicken wing in public and how to stop our faces from looking real shit in the mirror – Simmons has the answers to all the questions you probably aren’t asking but are certain to make your life infinitely better. Completely originally and absolutely absurd, spend your night with Sam Simmons at The Tivoli on Wednesday 11 September and Thursday 12 September.
Directed by Alexandra Bassiakou Shaw and written by Kirk Lynn, The Cold Record is a one-man mystery. This is the story of a 12-year-old boy who tries to set the record for leaving school the most days with a fever and, in the process, falls in love with the school nurse and breaks his heart on punk rock. After you meet at the Tivoli, the actual location is secret and before you leave you’ll have to promise never to speak about what you’ve witnessed. Sounds intense, but we’re ready to strap ourselves in for the ride. Performances take place from Friday 6 September until Thursday 12 September so there is plenty of time to get in on the action.
Every night before bed, Lilly enters a fantastical universe created just for her, where she encounters a host of strange and menacing creatures thanks to the masterful storytelling of her father Max and grandfather George. Think of the fantastical takes your parents used to read to you before bed – now imagine them coming to life in a secret location. That’s exactly what URLAND, a performance collective from the Netherlands, aims to create for guests at Bedtime Stories in this coming-of-age live radio play performed by Thomas Dudkiewicz. You’ll be kept on the edge of your seat from start to finish. Meet at the Tivoli, before being taken to your secret location, with performances from Wednesday 18 September until Friday 20 September.
Brisbane Festival will transform the city from Friday 6 September until Saturday 28 September. Tickets to all Riverstage and The Tivoli shows are available via Ticketmaster.com.au from Thursday 4 July @ 9am.