Confusion Reigns at Coniston Lane

Last night’s ENEI/KASRA/MEFJUS gig at Coniston Lane was an intriguing conglomeration of Brisbane’s D ‘n’ B scenes. Hosted by Timmy P MC from New Zealand’s Breaking Beats crew, the evening saw the unusual convergence of tatted up gangster rap fans and Coniston Lane’s regular tripper crowd. 

Critical Sound’s artists did not disappoint when it came to delivering skittish, driving mixes that got the fans moving.  Timmy P’s “hosting” of the event, however, was overwhelming. Fans of the European DJs lamented the MC’s rapping throughout all of the acts, with one punter simply requesting, “Will the real Slim Shady please shut the fuck up?”

The confusion of the collaboration hallmarks a deeper problem facing Coniston Lane. Under new management, the bar is now only accessible through the “Woolly Mammoth Alehouse” – a craft beer bar stylishly renovated to cater to the affluent hipster scene. The beloved grunge of Coniston Lane, with fantastic wall-to-wall graffiti and the potential for an off-the-hook dance floor (as one patron pointed out, the dance floor was full the previous week when Alex Perez played for an entre fee $5 less than the Breaking Beats/Critical Sound gig), is in stark comparison to the beautifully decorated, yet completely empty (and devoid of music for some reason?) hipster lounge next door.

That the second bar in the venue wasn’t utilised to provide an acoustic escape for tired dancers makes little sense. The fact that large artists like ENEI, KASRA and MEFJUS paired with the seemingly amateur operation hosting the vent makes even less sense. Artists like this have the potential to hold a crowd captive, yet lame lighting (how hard is it to synchronise lights and music people?), belated air conditioning (it’s D ‘n’ B, the venue should prepare for hot, sweaty dancers) and a rapper whose lyrics added neither melody or message to compliment the DJs ultimately made the night a little disappointing.

On the bright side, the fact that a gentleman left his cigarettes at the smoking area for forty minutes and came back to find them and his lighter completely untouched speaks to the quality of the people who attended.