Entertainment

The Medics are ready to operate at Saltwater

Cairns band The Medics are headlining the Saltwater Freshwater Festival.
Cairns band The Medics are headlining the Saltwater Freshwater Festival.

BAND in a coastal town struggling to find all-ages venues to play - so they create their own scene.

Cairns band The Medics have a lot in common with our energetic local all-ages scene, and are a great example of what inspired songwriting and a lot of hard work can do.

Formed in 2007, The Medics are packing for their two upcoming shows: Big Day Out and then our very own regional love fest, Saltwater Freshwater Festival.

"We have to weigh everything to ship for the tour," said guitarist Andrew Johnson.

"Now we're mucking around today trying to find a weight scale - I think we're gonna have to go to the tip and weigh everything there."

It's been a voyage of discovery for neighbourhood mates drummer Jhindu Lawrie, bassist Charles Thomas, guitarist Andrew Johnson and singer Kahl Wallace.

Andrew said the whole point of being in a band was having friends enjoy music around you.

"That's what bands were about back in the day - parties in garages and in paddocks," he said of the early days of The Medics.

"There are no real (all ages) venues in Cairns, so when The Medics started to see a little bit of money come through we started to put on our own shows, like at the YMCA - it was pretty cool hey."

Putting on their own shows in Cairns led The Medics to shows in Townsville and then Brisbane, where they're currently living.

"Those shows were scary at first, and we weren't all 18," Andrew said.

"One pub in Townsville we were playing in changed their mind at the last minute and didn't want Charles to play (he was only 17). So we put the bass amp between the door and the stage, extended the lead and he played like 15 metres from us, he was technically 'outside'. It was really ridiculous."

With loads of local musos playing in more than one band, Andrew said it was obvious from the start that The Medics were something different.

"First and foremost The Medics were on the next level from anything else we were doing," he said.

"Every time we played we practised, we thought a lot before we made any other decisions and we believed in each other's abilities.

"As a band we would critique everything really hard and not rush any- thing."

The decision paid off, with an EP in 2008 and another in 2010 earning them exposure on Triple J Unearthed, festival slots and a coveted Deadly Award for Band of the Year.

Debut album Foundations, released last year, was featured heavily on Triple J and cracked the top 30 of the ARIA charts.

"It was a long process," Andrew said about recording the album.

"It took a bit of time to choose the order of songs, we kinda wanted to make the album sound like a journey."

It must have been a good experience for the band as they're keen to repeat it, partly due to the indulgence of a supportive record company.

"We have a pretty good position with the record label where we show a lot of initiative, we do our own artwork and choose our own songs.

Everything to do with the album was purely our choice," Andrew said.

"We're writing a lot of songs at the moment; we've hired a practise room where we can jam whenever we want," Andrew said.

"We'll be demoing stuff soon, there'll be definitely an album drop this year."

Catch The Medics at Saltwater Freshwater Festival, Taree, on January 26.

There's cheap transport on offer to the Festival - for more info click here.

Topics:  music, music festival, saltwater freshwater festival



Draft plan sent to State Government

MOVING FORWARD: Plans to upgrade facilities on the Woolgoolga Beach Reserve have been passed up to the State Government.

Woopi draft plan sent to State Government

Locals lend a hand to a family in need

SORELY MISSED: A community fundraiser will be held to support the family of Noah Olive, who passed away suddenly the day before Mother's Day.

Locals lend a hand to a family in need

Christian hits playground in new walker

READY FOR ACTION: Christian Sheridan. Inset: New wheels Christian with his mum Jess Sheridan, and Coffs Harbour Lions Club members Sandra and Peter Veryard and Brian Beynon with his new donated walker.

Christian hits playground in new walker

Latest deals and offers

Elm Street is far from a nightmare

Elm street's new album is making waves. Photo Contributed

Elm Street talks about drumming studios, power metal and the album.

What's on the small screen this week

Keira Maguire and Richie Strahan in a scene from The Bachelor.

SEVEN gears up for the Rio Olympics while The Bachelor continues.

Drowning Pool gig review at Max Watt's

Drowning Pool played Brisbane with A Breach of Silence and She Cries Wolf at the Max Watt's House of Music.

Drowning Pool prove that 'bodies' hit the floor when they play

#SaveMarinaJoyce: How ISIS theory took over youtube channel

One young Youtuber accidentally gave rise to a conspiracy theory

Talking whiskey with Jack Daniel’s master distiller

It all comes down to the distillery

SIXTY MILES AHEAD sign with Eclipse Records, prepare new album 'Insanity'

Sixty Miles Ahead sign with Eclipse. Photo Contributed

Sixty Miles Ahead to release new album on Eclipse

Queensland's $1 town goes under the hammer today

The township of Yelarbon is up for sale.

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

A home rich in history looking for a new owner

HISTORY: The circa 1920s home is being sold for the first time in 90 years.

Circa 1920s home being sold for the first time in 90 years