A feast for the eyes and ears unlike any other. The Pleasure Garden festival is an immersive, creative music and arts experience like nothing you have ever seen before set to happen in St Kilda on December 10th.
The music line up features The Cat Empire, Blue King Brown, The Opiuo Band, Tash Sultana, Dub Pistols Sound System, The Correspondents, Dub FX, Spoonbill, OKA, Jakubi, Mista Savona, The Chicken Brothers, JPS, Steve Ward, Boogs, Kodiak Kid, Beatrice, Mortisville and Friends.
Set to a backdrop of picturesque parkland the Pleasure Garden also offers mischievous roving theatrical performances and inspiring art installations. From a giant hairy snail and its impish rider to old school carnie charm of Captain Ruin’s death defying stunts, poetic experience of More Than Mime Theatre. On the art front, Glitzern Grime deliver large impact constructs and General Zodd brings full scale models from a fantasy world.
Topped off with some of Melbourne’s finest food offerings from pizza from the legends at 400 Gradi, organic vegetarian soul food from Vegilicous, tacos from Dos Diablos, to the greatest burgers from Kombi Burger. While Zero Gradi, Chillbro Paletas and Billy Van Creamy have you covered for dessert.
THE CAT EMPIRE
For over a decade, The Cat Empire have been known far and wide as one of the world’s greatest party bands and we are ecstatic to have them head up the first Pleasure Garden announcement. In 2015 The Cat Empire toured over 15 different countries, playing many festivals including Hurricane and Southside Festival, Germany, Secret Garden Party, UK and Rock Wertcher in Belgium as well as the career highlight of Royal Albert Hall in London. The band’s most recent release, sixth album, Rising With The Sun debuted at #1 on the ARIA charts and achieved Top 10 debut in 7 countries. Six musicians, unstoppable on the global stage and synonymous for freedom, summer, running from the dark side and quirky love songs, The Cat Empire will treat the crowd to a fiercely uplifting live show. Ollie McGill was kind enough to answer my questions rather humorously! Facebook
Beatrice is an artist that carries you deep into the textured soundscapes of her cinematic bass music.
A vocalist, multi- instrumentalist and electronic producer from Melbourne, she has an artistic bipolarity and sophistication that weaves itself through every beat, bar and polyrhythm.
Her music’s deep and dark nature offers a hope and wisdom that immediately strikes a chord with audiences. Facebook
JPS (Jerry Poon / The Operatives)
JPS aka Jerry Poon is known to most as the head honcho of The Operatives, which over the past 5 years have had an unparalleled commitment to bringing out ground breaking experimental beats artists to Australia and New Zealand. The vast diversity of genres the agency supports is reflected in his sets – From hip hop, funk, soul, future beats, Salsa, Samba, to DnB, dancehall and Reggae to name a few. Facebook
Jen: How stoked are you to perform at the Pleasure Garden Festival?
Ollie: I grew up in St Kilda. I lived in the pent house of the iconic building, “The George”, the one with the Turret on the corner of Grey and Fitzroy. I used to busk with my friends on Fitzroy st during the St Kilda festival and later played every Saturday and Sunday at Vibe Café on Acland St. The challenge was to avoid being hit by a tram. As you can imagine, I have many memories of St Kilda, and having migrated to Sydney (a traitor to my own kind) I am always excited to return to my old stomping ground; Katarni gardens, none the less, having spend many a drunken night chasing possums in that very space. So, I think it is safe to say, I am very stoked to be performing at pleasure gardens.
Beatrice: Day festival. In Melbourne. Beautiful weather. Some of the best current Australian music AND by the beach… Ummmmm stoked as a chimney bro!
JPS: It’s always dope to be asked to perform at an inaugural show of a festival and by the sounds of it these guys are going all out.
Jen: Will you enjoy the festival by checking out other bands and all the activities?
Ollie :This is the pretend answer: I will watch all the bands and participate in the festival wholeheartedly and be inspired to give a special show that evening.
And the real answer: I have a wedding to attend in Redhill that day, quite frankly, I’ll be rocking up half an hour before we go on stage and (like the true professional that I am) delivering a dynamite show as I do every time I perform.
Beatrice: Absolutely! I know a lot of the other bands and I can’t wait to hear what they have been up to over winter. The diversity of the line-up really excites me too.
JPS: 100%, some great friends on the bill as well.
Jen: Have you thought about you set list? Is there new music you will be playing?
Ollie: Felix is responsible for writing the set list, which is usually written about 15 minutes before we go on stage. It is different from night to night and usually changes during the show as well. Let’s call it a “spontaneous” set list!
Beatrice: Yes! My set list has a bunch of new music I made recently at the Red Bull Music Academy in Montreal with the studio team and participants from all over the world such as Just Blaze, Branko, Swisha from L.A, Shake it Machine from Switzerland and AAAA from Mexico. As well as my recently completed EP and a few special tunes I heard in America that I cannot wait to play on a big sound-system.
JPS: Some original JPSxHooves business, some old and some new tunes but it really depends on what the dancefloor is vibing on, 100% bringing some serious bass.
Jen: Can you tell us in 5 words what your set will be like?
Ollie: Party, party, party, party, party!
Beatrice: Ambient, textural, heavy, bass music.
JPS: Bulletproof vests will be required!
Jen: Can you tell us if you have any touring coming up?
Ollie: We are doing a short (6 shows I think) national tour with Xavier Rudd in February. After that we will be having some time off. Even immortals like ourselves need a break every now and then.
Beatrice: I am currently on an Australian summer tour, very excited to be playing at the Operatives 12th birthday this Sunday the 4th of Dec with two of my hero’s Machinedrum and Mark Pritchard. Then THE PLEASURE GARDEN!! And some NYE festivities… Then next year I will be releasing my first single and will be doing a mini-tour of Australia.
JPS: Jan 19 – Cherry – Singapore w Om Unit
and Jan 27 – Oxford Art Factory – Sydney w Mr Carmack
Jen: With all the choices of the food at the festival, is there a tradition in your band of what to eat or drink before and after the show?
Ollie: We don’t have a tradition of eating anything specific, but we do enjoy exploring the local cuisine. In this case, souvlakis after the show will suit just fine!
Beatrice: Lots of water. Then possibly another drink that looks like water but is actually gin. *note to self gin is not a meal Jen : Vodka is as it is made from potatoes!
JPS: No specific traditions or superstitions, but I damn I love food.
Jen: Is there a cause that you feel passionate about and share the message in your music?
Ollie :Music is the language of us all (or our soul… or assholes)
Beatrice: I have the privilege of working with lots of amazing Indigenous musicians from the Central Deserts of Australia. I am currently in a band with some ladies from Elliott in the NT called Kardajala Kirridarra. I feel very passionate about the talent, power, strength and beauty these women have. I feel very lucky to get to work with them and I hope to help bring their story to a wider audience through music.
I guess in a sense respecting the craft of DJing and on a greater note respecting the land you play on and the people you play with and to.
Jen: Any other news that you would like to share?
Ollie: All I will say is that I think we can expect more kittens next year… Sorry for the cheesy cat reference.
Beatrice: Not that I can think of. I’m just really happy and I can’t wait to share all of this beautiful music I’ve been making.
JPS: Will have 7” and special customised papers available. Check theoperatives.com.au and it will be updated.