Lachlan Smith



Soundwave 2014 Brisbane Postmortem


Feburary 24, 2014

Having attended Soundwave festival in 2009 and 2010 at Brisbane RNA Showgrounds, and 2013 in Melbourne Flemington Racecourse I knew that Brisbane was the place to experience soundwave.

I didn't make much of the first wave lineup so it was with much trepidation I didn't buy a discount pre-sale ticket. I had been monitoring the Jimmy Eat World website for tour dates because they had recently released an album, so when the second wave lineup for Soundwave was announced with Jimmy Eat World on the lineup, I had to throw all my money at it despite it being the most expensive soundwave yet.

I was so excited for Jimmy Eat World and Green Day that I tweeted at AJ Maddah. Having seen Green Day live in 2008, and Jimmy Eat World live twice in 2010 I could have cried if they had clashed.

As it so happens, the day turned out perfect. My complimentary Virgin Australia flight thanks to American Express landed on time the night before. But it wasn't long until Brisbane dumped a torrent of rain down on the city while driving home along the ICB right past the RNA Showgrounds. I started the day by checking the weather and making sure that the temperature would remain perfect to wear a T-shirt and shorts comfortably the whole day. With a low of 23 degrees, cloudy, and 50% chance of 1 to 3 mm rain I got dressed, had breakfast, applied sunscreen, and made my way to the Bus Stop. Minutes later Brisbane Transport chauffeured me to right outside the RNA Showgrounds.

Arriving just before midday, I followed the crow of people heading for the main gate. Making one last check I had everything I needed; sunnies, topup sunscreen, wallet, keys, phone, and ticket. I breezed through the over 18 line and made it inside the venue.

This concludes #sw14brisbane I had a great time this year. Hope everyone else does so too in the other states.

Having not been to the RNA showgrounds for a while, and not being able to get into the D barricade all day in Melbourne 2013, the first thing I did was checkout the barricade situation at Stages 1 & 2. A quick visual check and I was only my way to stage 3 for Mayday Parade. I took a quick snap, and was surprised that data was working well enough to make a post to Instagram.

Starting #sw14brisbane with a bang, Mayday Parade!!!

11:55 am I arrived in time to listen to the whole Mayday Parade set; who I had on my MOG playlist for the past year. I also quickly realised this Soundwave was different to past festivals. There were people standing in the crowd with alcohol; there was no segregated drinking area. I am pleased to report this did not appear to present a problem, and the majority remained well behaved.

12:30 pm From there I moved along to stage 7 where I listened to Dangerkids, and was re-tweeted by the Soundwave twitter.

Danger kids at #sw14brisbane

1:10 pm At this point I familiarised myself with the food situation, making mental notes I would need for later in the day. I then headed along to Alkaline Trio under the tent. At this point enough people had arrived that my data connection became too constrained for Instagram and my updates were delayed until I came home.

Alkaline Trio under the tent at #sw14brisbane

2:15 pm I then headed off to the stage 1/2 grandstand where I waited off a few sprinkles of rain before heading back to stage 3 for A Fire Inside. AFI put on a great set pulling out crowd favourites such as Miss Murder.

AFI is going off at #sw14brisbane

3:00 pm From there I headed to stage 1 where I caught the start of the Placebo set. After the first 3 songs I headed off to the merchandise tent and bought myself a Jimmy Eat World Good Time Rock and Roll t-shirt. I had now officially joined the crowd of band shirt wearers.

Selfie at #sw14brisbane the merch tent was too tempting this year

3:25 pm From there I headed along and caught the middle of the Panic! at the Disco set at stage 3. I remained for a few songs before heading back to stage 1 where I enjoyed the remainder of the Placebo set including crowd pleasers Speciak K and The Bitter End.

Placebo at #sw14brisbane

4:05 pm From there it was back to stage 3 (annex) for Bowling for Soup.

Bowling for soup scheduled photo op at #sw14brisbane

Bowling for Soup brought the show to Soundwave by scheduling a band photo op, and explaining how they were given credit for Fountain of Wayne's hit song Stacey's Mom before pulling out their hit song 1985.

Bowling For Soup at #sw14brisbane

4:40 pm I then had 5 minutes to make my way to stage 7B for Breathe Carolina. Putting on an explosive set, lead vocalist David Schmitt exclaimed they were turning Soundwave into a Rave party. The high energy set included new material from the Savages album and finished with Blackout from the Hell Is What You Make it album.

Breathe Carolina at #sw14brisbane

Exhausted after jumping up and down for 40 minutes, I had 40 minutes to recharge before the Jimmy Eat World set. I was planning to be in the D barricade for over 4 hours so I used my knowledge of the food stands and headed straight for Nando's where I picked up a chicken burger. I then headed to the water fountain scoffing down what I could eat of the burger, emptied my bladder, and continued to stage 2.

Arriving at stage 2 20 minutes before Jimmy Eat World I was able to casually walk up to the front where I was able to secure an unobstructed view of the stage.

Jimmy Eat World owning it at #sw14brisbane

6:00 pm Jimmy Eat World did not disappoint, pulling out all the stops in the somewhat constrained 1 hour set. Opening with Pain and [i]Futures/[i], and finishing with Bleed American, The Middle, and Sweetness the set was highly enjoyed by the crowd; with exception of the security personnel beyond the front barricade.

7:00 pm From stage 2 it was a short walk to the adjacent stage 1, still within the D barricade which was now full. The show began after teasing the crowd for 10 minutes with pre-show music including Bohemian Rhapsody with a crowd sing along. Finally Green Day came out where they started with new material 99 Revolutions. An energetic mix of music followed including old school favourites from Dookie, Kerplunk, Nimrod, and a 7 minute sing along to the 5 part song Jesus of Suburbia off the Platinum album American Idiot.

Green Day takes the stage after teasing us for 10 mins at #sw14brisbane and a crowd rendition of Bohemian Raphsody

Green Day did not disappoint with full theatrics from the likes of lead guitarists and vocalist Billie Joe Armstrong.

Billie Joe Armstrong knows how to put on a show at #sw14brisbane

9:35 pm After an exhausting two and a half hours, Billie Joe concluded the set by wishing the crowd Good Riddance (Time of Your Life) from the Nimrod record.

Billie Joe Armstrong serenading the crowd with Good Riddance at #sw14brisbane

To conclude, while the weather remained overcast, the rain held up which helped keep the day cool providing perfect festival weather. The Soundwave team did a great job keeping everything running smoothly, from entering the venue, to the merchandise tent, to covering the grassed areas in front of stages with plastic to prevent the grounds turning into a mud pile. The mix of bands kept me entertained all day with barely a moment when I wasn't on my feet seeing another band.

Tags: sw14brisbane

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