It was 30 Years Ago Today: Tall Tales of a Planet Shaking Year in Rock. Part 2.
Paul Mitchell concludes his story of Geelong’s greatest band from 1991, Tall Planet.
Part 1 ended with Paul meeting a band called Deer Bubbles, whose singer, he learnt, was Adalita…
Second in the battle of the bands to Deer Bubbles’ magic, I used my old Belmont footy club network and got Tall Planet a gig at the famed Barwon Club Hotel. Doddsy ran the place and he and his family were Belmont legends. He’d let me drink there since . . . well, I’d enjoyed a few drinks there. Before we were set to play at the BC, Andrew rang me up one Tuesday night and said I had to go down with him and see a gig there, right now.
“Tex Perkins’ new band’s on tonight. And Kim Salmon and the Surrealists are supporting.”
I had no idea who or what he was talking about.
“Salmon was in The Scientists,” he added.
There were a dozen people in the prestigious band room when we arrived, none of whom were in lab coats or art smocks, but all of whom were likely in the bands. Andrew pointed to a bloke with floppy hair and a beaten jacket, asleep on a couch.
“That’s Kim Salmon,” he said. Not long after, Kim awoke and played a blistering set with the Surrealists that sounded like a disco-dancing power saw operator fighting a drunkard with a jackhammer. Then he went back to sleep on the couch.
A dark-haired man taller than every member of Tall Planet got on stage a half-hour later, wearing a dark denim shirt. He was surrounded by a few blokes likewise shirted, one wearing a white cowboy hat. I was thrilled to see an acoustic guitar on a stand. Tall Planet were still onto something.
“That’s Tex,” Andrew said, and I thought he meant the bloke with the white hat. The band started up a swaying, twanging, country surf-styled instrumental, while Tex held the mike stand, nodded and watched. The music was so good – and the sound so clear – I got the chills. Kim Salmon may even have woken up.
When he singing started, this group called The Cruel