Dark pop muso Giverny went to one gig per week in 2017. These were his 6 favourites

Before Giverny plays the Botany View Hotel in January, suss out the artist’s six favourite shows of 2017. You might just find something you love.

Words by Giverny.

I think its safe to say that Sydney’s Lockout Laws did a real number on Sydney’s live music scene, when they were introduced in 2014. Almost four years on and the Sydney live music scene has proven extremely resilient, still thriving even in its very un-ideal circumstances.

To be a part of a solution this year I promised myself I would support Sydney’s local scene and go out and see at least one local performance a week in the same way people have supported me as an artist, ranging from bands or acts that I’d never heard of before to others that I’d been listening to for quite a while.

In this time I’ve seen some unreal acts and discovered some really amazing artists. So to give you some inspiration on some acts you need to see in Sydney, I thought I’d list five of my favourite performances of the year, but I could only settle on six…

giverny plotholes

GAUCI – Volumes 2017 – Oxford Art Factory

Three incredible solo musicians (Las Vagueness, Leftenent and Felix Lush) come together to form one incredible band GAUCI. There were many amazing acts at Volumes 2017 but GAUCI stood out to me significantly and have become one of my favourite bands. Here is an electronic punk act writing remarkable vocal hooks alongside punchy bass-lines, multi layered synths, softly spoken guitar licks and a perfect blend of all three of their unique vocals as the set progresses.

There are so many details that GAUCI have covered in their performance that it’s easy to get swept away. Each individual song in their 30-40 minute set is amazing.

gauci jack stillman happy mag issue 4 launch
Photo: Jack Stillman

Mere Women – Big Skies Album Launch – The Red Rattler Theatre

This was one of the most raw performances I’ve seen in my life. Mere Women’s album Big Skies would definitely be on my list of top five albums of the year, but seeing these songs live was a different experience altogether.

The dark guitars mixed with hard hitting punk vocals were something I loved about Big Skies and knew I was going to see, but the power of the drums and bass that added to this performance turns these songs into anthems. Without a doubt, the amazing Marcus Whale supporting made the night even more significant.

Tropical Strength – Lets Take a Walk – Stanwell Park CWA Hall

This was a bit of a drive for me that only intensified the mystery. The Tropical Strength show was a psychedelic, out of body experience to another dimension comprised of sitar tones, soft organs and melancholy spoken vocals supported by an infectious Ringo Starr-esque groove.

I could have easily stayed in that zone for a week or two. They finished it off with the song Let’s Take A Walk, bringing me back down to Earth.

Lupa J – Keep Back Single Launch – Oxford Circus

Lupa J could bring an atmosphere to any venue but a small venue like the Oxford Circus was something really special. With amazing support from Jikaroux this show was definitely one of my favourites of the year.

Lupa J playing many string instruments through a large amount of effects left the room in awe, mixed with her dark passionate vocals bringing it all together with hard hitting industrial drums.

Keep Back was definitely my favourite performance of the night with Lupa J’s powerful vocals over the top of a hauntingly airy plucked violin. This performance gave me chills and still does just thinking about it.

lupa j the ladies network dani hansen
Photo: Dani Hansen

Cody Munro Moore – Cobra Club – Waywards

This was a last minute show for me as I was tied up in rehearsals. And while I only made 30 minutes of this performance I discovered one of my new favourite bands. Cody Munro Moore’s album Perfume Nightmare brings so many different emotions, and to me the most amazing thing an artist can do is make you feel something.

Their live performance delivered just this, with a live drummer and a sax accentuating the bass notes, Cody Munro Moore’s performance brought the room alive and made me want to dance. There were also divine bass lines mixed with dreamy guitars which really tie this performance together, while Cody’s hard hitting vocals add an amazing flair and made this performance impeccable.

cody munro moore dani hansen
Photo: Dani Hansen

North Arm –  Let Love Through Album Launch – Botany View Hotel

If I had an award to give for the dreamiest performance of the year it would go to North Arm for his Let Love Through album launch. It’s funny, not often do I listen to music and smile but this North Arm set departed from his usual solo performance with a duet on the night, both vocals sitting so perfectly with each other.

With just a bass, guitar, vocals and a little track, every person in the room could feel the energy coming from these two. To wrap it all up there was a fantastic performance at the end with a saxophone coming in for I’m Awake to really give the show something to end on.


Catch Giverny on the 13th of January The Botany View Hotel in Newtown, where he’ll be performing with a full live band and fellow Sydneysiders WAWAWOW. Details here.

Honourable Mentions

King Single
Bus Vipers
Nocturnal Tapes