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52 Weeks of #SydCulture: Week 10

By Kali Reid

Welcome to the ninth guest blog post of Time Out Sydney's 52 Weeks of #SydCulture 2017 challenge! This month is a bit special: the lady who inspired this campaign, Kali Reid, is culture-selecting for us. Every Tuesday of March, Kali will be telling us what she loved the week before. Think of it as your recommendations for this week, from someone who sees a helluva lot of arts and culture. Over to her. 

Welcome to four weeks of my life in art, music, theatre and film. My goal for the year is to see more live music, and this week I went to catch an old favourite, PVT, spinning their fifth album at Oxford Art Factory on Friday March 3.

In my early twenties I had a secret love of going to gigs alone, so I thought I'd revive the practice. I snuck in for the second half of support Jack Grace. Rough around the edges in all the right ways, and well worth checking out.

PVT first came to my attention the year 2000, when they were younger, gawkier and known as Pivot. My boyfriend at the time raved about these amazingly avant garde electronic jazz musos after seeing a show at the jazz bar that used to be on the corner in Crows Nest. I was desperate to impress him so I never forgot them. I’ve seen them play a bunch of times since, and they’ve gone on to be very successful international artists. Hats off to my ex, it was a good tip.

PVT – Oxford Art Factory, Mar 3
Photograph: Eddy Summers

Always one for a surprise, I decided not to listen to the album – New Spirit – before I got there. They opened with some super sparse precision beats and fat bass – which had me wondering if we were about to drop into a techno set. But true to form they held that tension throughout the night, switching it all up and riding us through hints of garage rock guitar, tuneful catchy melodies and back again, allowing the crowd to exhale and exalt in micro-doses. This is the beauty of PVT: they’re actual musical wizards who can take a crowd anywhere. “Who said you can’t play free jazz to a festival crowd,” chuckled Lawrence as the crowd went wild at the end of a particularly special arrhythmic freestyle.

By the end of the night I’d recovered from the week at work without so much as one beer. There’s nothing like standing in a dark room with hundreds of strangers; listening to intensely intelligent, intricate music, having an almost-dance, not looking at your phone, and then bundling yourself straight home to bed by witching hour on a Friday. Amen to music.

Check out what's coming up at Oxford Art Factory

Read more about our 52 Weeks of #SydCulture challenge, and let us know what you're seeing/loving on Instagram via the hashtag #SydCulture.

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