• Sara Reeves

Review: Greatest Hits and Rugged Coast at Solbar Maroochydore

The last time I had been able to see live music was 2018 – my final year of high school. The year following, my best friend and I tried to see a few of our favourite artists live, but either the tickets were sold out, or one of us was working and did not have the energy to enjoy some music after or before a shift. That was the expanse of 2019. Then, obviously 2020 happened –as much as some of us may want to pretend it didn’t – it wasn’t like any of us were getting to see live music then either. Even though I was interning at Livewire AU for music writing, it was during a pandemic, so live reviews weren’t really in the picture.

Finally, February 2021 came around. Though I wasn’t able to properly meet the new Australian artists I was introduced to during my internship, I did have the opportunity to have a spicy Zoom interview with Aussie band, Greatest Hits. I call the interview ‘spicy’ because 5 minutes into the interview, the phone they were using overheated, and they cut out. Name something more Australian, I dare you.

Between glitches and terrible communication skills on my part, we were able to complete the interview and go on with our days. Bring us to a couple of months later, they announced a show in Maroochydore at Solbar. Now, I did have work the next morning, but the show was just under $20 and I was dying to see these guys live.

Solbar (The Solbar?) is on Ocean Street, meaning that parking is weird and I have no idea what those green ‘P’ signs actually mean, so we didn’t start our venture on the best foot (‘our’ being mine and the aforementioned best friend who came along even though she had no clue who we were seeing). We prevailed, however, finding a Hungry Jacks parking lot and taking an Uber from there to the bar.

The next hurdle was finding the bar. We had never gone to a show this small, so to see a small little bar open for music, it’s fair to say we were confused on whether we had the right place at all.

Thankfully, we did.

After a short while of waiting in the bar, and a vodka sunrise on my best friend’s part (she rates them an 8/10), we were allowed into the back room. Lined by the stage were small tables with wooden stool seats. Obviously, we snapped up two immediately. Standing up? Not when there’s perfectly good seats around.

The first thing we found ourselves noticing was that we had missed the underground indie gig ‘dress code’, featuring most of the audience dressed in baggy white tees, blue jeans, and of course, converse shoes. We were the very obvious newcomers, seeing as everyone else seemed to know each other. Regardless, we were excited to see an entirely new show.

The stage opened with group of four ‘Rugged Coast’, another small Aussie band that hyped up the crowd with some psychedelic singles that we would later listen to in the car on the way home. The vibrant band worked together to create a new-wave sound that bounced around the walls of the back room.

When it was time for Greatest Hits, we all got to our feet. The band started out with their Vol. One album, comprised of ‘Growler, A Little Bit of Everyone’, ‘One Afternoon’, ‘Lemon Joe’, ‘Trying’, ‘Mortals’, and my personal favourite, ‘Phil, Slow It Down’. The groovy 60’s-70’s inspired indie tracks got us rocking on the floor, tying to keep a good distance between one another while also allowing the music to take us away.

Fused with classic pop-rock and underground indie, Greatest Hits layers their music with sarcastic and witty lyrics that take a second listening to understand the meaning they hold behind the bopping tracks.

Two songs through their set, the band invited the friends they had been staying (and practicing) with up on the stage to thank them. It started with a ‘thank you’, obviously, before turning into them helping with the audio visuals of the show. In simpler terms, the two friends were grooving on stage and singing backing vocals while the rest of the band jammed out.

Nearing the end of the show, we were welcomed to their new sounds, giving us a sneak peak of upcoming songs ‘Palm Springs’ (out now!) and ‘Spicy’.

Trust me when I say, if you’re invited to any live music shows, do it while you can, even if the band is so underground that google searches come up with some very confusing results (Greatest Hits really didn’t do any favours for themselves in naming, that much they admitted themselves). And if you’re looking for a band to get into, Greatest Hits is still working around Queensland, so if you see them with a show near you, snatch it up before they get big!