Early on Thursday morning, a post appeared on my Instagram feed which made me nearly drop my phone. Kisschasy, the essential 00s indie pop punk band who helped usher in a new era of the Australian sound, had announced a last-minute show at a tiny pub for that night. Not only was it a totally free gig but they planned to play their debut 2005 album in full — something they’d never done before.
Let me preface this review by explaining what Kisschasy, a gritty four-piece from the Mornington Peninsula, means to me. They were the first band I ever saw live on my own accord. It was 2005 and I was a music-obsessed 14-year-old (don’t do the math) who was determined to see her latest obsession live.
Their debut album United Paper People had barely been out two months and I’d memorised every word by the time I saw them in September, the same year it was released.
Now, some 17 years later (again, do not do the math), I got to see them play that first album cover to cover.
Around 100 people crammed into the tiny front bar of The Gem in Collingwood to see the band perform their first show in nearly a decade. The energy was quietly buzzing as long-time fans waited to hear the first notes of the album’s opening track and the band’s biggest hit, “Do-Do’s And Woah-Oh’s”.
It’s truly wild to me that I’ve nicked down the pub to see the very first band I saw live (2005) play the album I was obsessed with in full.. for free pic.twitter.com/tSXeQ2Lbta— corgi (@courtwhip) November 30, 2022
Watching the first half of the album from the bar, it was clear that Kisschasy was such a well-oiled machine that the band — made up of vocalist Darren Cordeaux, bassist Joel Vaneruit, guitarist Sean Thomas and drummer Karl Ammitzboll — fell back into the rhythm with ease.
Darren admitted that they had their first rehearsal in around eight years the night before and to forgive them for any missteps or dropped notes. But if there were any stumbles, they were so minor that nobody noticed, or they simply didn’t care because it was just so special.
I shifted outside to the street to watch the second half of the show through the window which gave me a far better view, clear sound and fresh air — sue me! Peering in and watching a good hundred punters sing along to tracks they likely grew up on just like I did felt like a moment in Melbourne’s music history.
The view and sound was better from outside??? Incredible pic.twitter.com/mcpkjfbjGK
— corgi (@courtwhip) November 30, 2022
I feel like I now have my own version of the stories my parents tell me of living in Melbourne in the ’70s and seeing bands like AC/DC and Skyhooks down at the local pub.
Kisschasy are about to trip around the country with the Good Things festival and if you too would like to get whipped back to your mid-00s pop-pun childhood, I highly recommend getting checking them out.