[2014019] CREEP ROCK

[2014019] CREEP ROCK

Memory Waste @ Astor Hotel – Astoria Room

7:30pm, Sun 16 Feb 2014

Attracted by a précis that promised a blend of geek, creep, and… well, rock, I returned to the Astor and toddled upstairs to the larger Astoria Room. There’s no synthetic grass here, but I was surprised to find that the room was almost full of bright and bubbly youngsters, chatting amongst themselves with the kind of vibe that made me think that they were all old friends; that this is a regular occurrence. That Memory Waste has brought them all together again.

And when Memory Waste – an indie singer/songwriter from Newcastle – takes to the stage, he’s greeted with rapturous applause and wooting. He announces that he’s recording the show on video – heads turn and more cheers are emitted once the camera is found – before the first song, I Followed You Home, is trotted out.

With guitar and a stomp-box accompanying his singing, Memory Waste’s songs all have a bittersweet charm about them – there’s plenty of love and adoration, to be sure, but they all seem to convey a troubled love… there’s always a darker side, usually broached with comedy. “If I could love you in Melbourne, I could love you anywhere” he sings in Melbourne, just before the song’s protagonist couple breaks up; “love isn’t what I thought it would be, but it’s better than being alone,” he laments in another track.

So… “bittersweet” is the perfect term for Memory Waste’s songs. But “creep” is not. And nor is his acoustic presentation anything that I would consider “rock”.

There was only around half-a-dozen songs – and interstitial chats to the friendly crowd – in this set; despite starting late, it finished way earlier than expected, and would have been struggling to hit thirty-five minutes. And whilst the music was pleasant, and the crowd singalongs were fun, there wasn’t really enough here to encourage me to pick up a CD of Memory Waste’s work.

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