F1 cars Vs KISS.

March 16th, 2008
My friend from Uranquinty, Matt, is a huge Kiss fan. Like, buying stuff off Ebay (little cars, records, T-Shirts and the like) huge fan….. He’s been like that for ever as far as I can tell. Hes always going on about them to me when the conversation turns to music. The last two times Kiss was out to Australia he was keen for me to go to a concert with him, but I was not super keen and so did not put in the required effort…..
Matt went on about the concert for months the last time he went, and he always said, that if they came out again, I had to go with him……well, who would have thought that they would start their world tour in Melbourne……exactly one week before I  leave the hemisphere………
To top things off, I have always had a hankering to go to a Formula 1 Grand Prix……whats the chances that the opening round of the 2008 series would be in Melbourne one week before we fly to the States…….and whats the chances that the Kiss concert would be at the same venue after the race???
Well, with an event like that, and with Matt offering to do the whole ticket thing (Australians have no idea how to sell tickets to major events and its a pretty time consuming thing), it just had to be the last big thing for me to do before I left, and to do it with Matt was just the best!

So, what was it like? Mixed…..we arrived just as the Porche’s were racing, it was staggering the speed they were doing, it was also really disappointing that you could not get anywhere around the track to see them. There is a really high fence around the track, which is fair enough, but then they have another fence about 3 meters inside that, and it makes it really hard to see anything. It puts you back far enough that you can only see the top few inches of the roof of the car as they go past. There are a few hills around the track, and of course they are packed with people, and not much shade. Of course the other spot that would give a view is the grandstands, but they cost mega bucks to get a seat on……..
The other problem is that you cant walk around the track, well, you can, but because of the grandstands, there are only a few over passes, and so you can walk past one overpass nearish the track, only to find you are at a dead end, so you have to walk back to the overpass to go any further, a whole lot of needless walking thats pretty frustrating is the result.
Between some of the car races they have these guys come out on motorbikes and do stunts and stuff, they were amazing.
Then the V8’s came out. WOW. They sound fantastic and they are going so amazingly fast. Really enjoyed watching them. Then the F1s came out. Very loud and looked a lot slower than the V8’s, so pretty boring and after about 15 min of the noise, VERY irritating. Even with ear plugs in, which is a must, they go right though you. 58 laps and you are ready to leave, its a delight when they stop!

Vanessa Amorosi took the stage for the ‘warm up’ act. Every song she did included her screaming at some stage though it. The sound guys over drove them badly (they must have been from the old school that just ‘knows’ every thing sounds better if its loud), so it was not the best…..
There was a 45 minute break while the roadies moved all the gear around and set up for the main act, before we knew it, the traditional rumble and the shout went out……
“Melbourne…..you wanted the best, and you got the best rock and roll band in the world…..KISS!!!!!”
Bam! There they were. Matt had paid for front stage tickets and we were about 12 meters from them…..With those huge boots on, they were larger than life, it was pretty amazing.
They might be old, but they still can belt out a tune, play slashing guitar and drum solos, and entertain. I mean lets face it, when you have been doing it for 35 years, and are still one of the largest selling bands ever, you know what it takes to keep 40 thousand people happy.
Check out the photos at the usual web address. (YouTube video in the works….hey, Im a little busy at the moment!)

Before you knew it, they were playing Rock and Roll all night and Party Every Day, the fireworks, clean sound and stage antics were all over. It was one of the quickest hour and three quarters for me in the past 6 months……

Sadly, the trip from the concert to the car park was not as quick…… The organizers really dropped the ball, big time. Anyway, we got back to the car, drove home and fell into bed. It was a big day, the cars were average, but the music was fantastic. Im not going to become a Kiss fan, I still love my Mike Oldfield, but at least now I know what Matt is on about, and it was just super to share that memory with him. Thanks Mate.