18 Sep 2019
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Soaked Oats - Gig Review: Soaked Oats @ La Zappa, Auckland - 08/03/2019

19 Mar 2019 // A review by Rupa Kelly
A free gig, especially one of Soaked Oats calibre are rare to come by. Set in the beautiful La Zappa bar, our space shared by the Auckland University Economics Club, the energy in the night was palpable. Cheap Coronas was an offer too tempting to pass up for most, buckets and ice abound, drinks to be shared between friends while the whole room buzzed and chatted not only for the gig, but for the night ahead. La Zappa was probably too small for a line-up like this, as before the first band had even started the place started to fill up - alas, the show must go on. This being the first leg of their Corona Sunset tour, Soaked Oats are on a wholemeal roll. Fresh off a new year's performance at Rhythm and Vines, a slot in Flying Out’s The Others Way Festival and multiple other gigs around the country, Soaked Oats are really warming up to become the porridge in the New Zealand music scene’s breakfast.

First up was Smokestack Slim, a five piece band with an excessively hard to pin down genre. One song you’d find your ears being caressed by some honky-tonk tunes, only for the chorus to start up and find that in fact you were listening to a blues song all along. While new on the scene, they have a sense of musical diversity that could well develop into something truly unique.

Next up, the main event. While me and my friends ducked out for a breath of fresh air between sets, most of the crowd stayed put. As we dipped back inside it was clear why; it was hard to find a place to stand - let alone groove. Soaked Oats came out onto the stage, greeting us with some atmospheric sounds while they take their places.

While their studio recordings are absolutely fantastic, Soaked Oats’ live performances capture some special kind of energy again and again. When you see them in person, you’re guaranteed a few things: at least 3 Jam sessions, 4 jokes that will make you laugh, 12 accent changes from Mein and most importantly; a hell of a good time. Oscar Mein is a fantastic frontman, changing up song lyrics to fit in a gag or bantering with the crowd off the cuff.

Even though I could hardly fit a breath in as I was well cramped into the bench to my right for two thirds of the set, Soaked Oats still made a standout performance, something that I am well coming to expect from a band of their calibre. You can catch soaked oats on the rest of their Corona Sunsets’ Tour around the country.

 

About Soaked Oats

Soaked Oats are a young four-piece band that percolated into existence in Dunedin. Catapulted by their infectious and joyful shows and fast-evolving songwriting chops, the band's profile and fanbase are on a steep rise. 2019 saw the release of their most accomplished work to date, the Sludge Pop EP. The band's single Coming Up was discovered by indie-rock icon Sharon Van Etten who shared to her 90 thousand plus fans, the band were signed to Australian label Dot Dash (Methyl Ethel, Gabriella Cohen) and invited to play UK’s tastemaker festival The Great Escape. Sell-out shows across NZ and Australia and the UK throughout 2019 have the band excited for what is to come as they begin work on their debut album proper.

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