Prove your humanity

Carla Geneve, Albany singer-songwriter, released her first single Greg’s Discount Chemist at The Bird on Saturday night. With support from Isla Imogen, Jack Davies and the Bush Chooks, and a DJ set from Your Girl Pho, it was a rocking night.

The Bird was already at capacity by the time we arrived. We may or may not have been late due to a pit stop for waffles. Jack Davies and the Bush Chooks were about to begin when we entered the crowded venue. A band with an authentic and unique sound, they were an act to remember.

Lead vocalist Jack Davies rocked out on a guitar that had a piece of paper taped to it with ‘BOYCOTT SUNRISE’ scrawled across it, and a harmonica strung around his neck. Their sound was very Australian folk, with a bit of jazz and indie rock. The boys’ stage presence was a bit all over the place; it was like watching your friends play in the garage – but in a good way. They had a warm and down to earth vibe about them that spread throughout the crowd as everyone swayed and hopped along, regardless of whether they had any idea what the song was or not. With multiple songs about breakfast foods, such as Soggy Weetbix, they were ever so Australian. My personal favourite track from their set being a tune about ‘op-shopping and emotional insecurities’, both amusing and relatable, that kept punters bopping along.

The crowd had begun chanting her name before she had even graced the stage with her presence. Carla’s set began with a slight technical difficulty when no sound came out of her guitar, but once that was fixed she was off and boy, she did not disappoint. The blue and red lights that lit up the stage set the mood and Carla’s strong voice proceeded to blow everyone away right from the beginning. The set was a combination of slow and upbeat songs, with a combination of folk and indie rock.

Juliet was a standout for me, which was probably influenced by personal bias since it’s my favourite song of Carla’s. It’s an emotional power ballad with amazing and raw vocals and crazy guitar shredding, how could you not love it? She slipped in a rendition of Stella Donnelly’s Mechanical Bull, altered to suit her own vocals and style. Carla introduced a new song she’d written about being a woman in the music industry. It confronted the music scene and all the misogynistic people in it through her experiences with guys telling her how “she should wear tighter jeans” and expressed her exasperation over being a “token pair of tits” on music lineups.

The song everyone was waiting for, Greg’s Discount Chemist, failed to disappoint. The crowd was jumping, swaying and shouting along as Carla rocked out onstage. The iconic line “I wish I could kill time, but time’s killing me” was hollered by the crowd as we bounced along. The band didn’t prepare an encore because she felt that was a bit “embarrassing”, so they stayed on stage and played two more: a song about Albany, which she dedicated to her boyfriend, and a classic, Empty Stomach.

A true performer, Carla rocked out with every fiber of her being. That woman has such amazing vocals that filled the whole venue and an insane stage presence, along with a great band to play alongside. I highly recommend checking her out when you can.

Carla Geneve’s latest single ‘Greg’s Discount Chemist’ is out now.