words: Megan Henderson // photos: Rick Clifford (@rcstills)
“..the sound just exploded through the roof of the bandroom and transported me to some sort of psychedelic wonderland that I never wanted to return from.”
Fresh off the back of their 8th album release, Pond took to the Croxton Bandroom on Thursday night to fill the room with their psychedelic energy. Melbourne locals, RVG, kicked off the sold out night with their classic alternative sound and evocative vocals that hit a lot harder live than when compared to their recorded work.
Pond soon after set to the stage with no real means of introduction - rather just walking out into the light, saying a quick hello, then launching straight into the opening track, Daisy. The informal beginning of the show was quite refreshing actually, and gave me the feeling that the band and all of us in the audience were on the same level. Daisy saw the band lit in a warm, orange glow. The crowd responded immediately to the opening line of the song, which soon provoked a big old yell when the chorus hit, all of us in unison asking 'Daisy, baby are you driving home?'. Despite the album being just 1 week old, the crowd had certainly already acquainted themselves with it.
Whilst the Croxton Bandroom is one of my favourite live music venues in Melbourne, I couldn’t help but think that the energy and sound of Pond simply should not be confined to indoor spaces (however, obviously we can't always get what we want). When Paint Me Silver came on, the sound just exploded through the roof of the bandroom and transported me to some sort of psychedelic wonderland that I never wanted to return from. Luckily for me, I got to stay there for a little while longer and was treated to all sorts of surprises, including a flute solo, the wonderful stage presence of frontman Nicholas Allbrook, a Bee Gees cover and even a tribute to the recently deceased Keith Flint of The Prodigy.
Everyone involved in the evening was great - the band, of course, the support act, the lighting people, the sound people, and especially the audience. I only saw maybe two or three phones filming the show throughout the duration of the night (with the exception of when Paint Me Silver was played - that produced a fair bit of phone action). Everyone around me was respectfully watching and enjoying the show, which is an ode to Pond for being such captivating performers.
Tunes were played at an even spread from each of the albums, and new tracks from their latest edition, Tasmania, were definitely well received by the crowd. The inevitable encore saw the two biggest tracks of the night: 30000 Megatons and Giant Tortoise, the latter of which provoked the most bopping and grooving out of the crowd from the whole night.
Pond played for just over an hour. An hour and fifteen minutes of pure psychedelic bliss that I enjoyed so thoroughly I even bought a t-shirt at the merchandise desk (that's really no surprise, though). In my eyes, Pond has certified themselves as a must-see live act, and a 100% guaranteed good time.