We celebrated 21 years of Ivy and the Big Apples with Spiderbait and it was beaut

When Spiderbait announced a run of shows to celebrate the 21st anniversary of their most lauded album, Ivy and the Big Apples, it’s pretty safe to say Melbourne liked them apples.
Support came from Bitch Diesel, a trash punk pop band made up of four no shit-taking females, singing songs about super relatable stuff. Bad bosses, getting dumped, a penchant for white wine, being party girls and even being a little bit of a Pash Rat. They’re not playing complicated stuff here, but the themes of their songs could be taken right out of the diary of any misfit teenage girl. Winding up their set with a blistering cover of The Stooges’ I Wanna Be Your Dog was a treat.
By the time the curtain parted and Kram, English and Whitty hit the stage, the packed house was already red with excitement. Spiderbait were about to play Ivy and The Big Apples from start to finish for the first time ever, and the crowd were ready to hop in the time machine and relive 1996.
For anyone who was there way back when, the memories of catching them at The Espy and The Great Britain all came flooding back. The driving, pure hard rock grooves hadn’t lost any of their edge. The contrast of English’s sweet vocals in front of their trademark heaving riffs for songs like Hot Water And Milk and Calypso was unmistakably Spiderbait.
The third track of the night was everybody’s favourite, Buy Me A Pony. To say this track is something of legend is no overstatement. Kram pointed out that it was the first ever Australian song to win triple j’s Hottest 100. The lights were swirling and punters were jumping and singing along. The energy in the room was palpable.
You could split the crowd into three groups; the die-hards, the Spidy hit fans and the fans of Black Betty. While this might be a tad nit-picky, the only drawback to playing one album track for track, is that you could sense some of the crowd were just hoping and praying that at the end of their set of songs that were somewhat unfamiliar, they would play some of their other classics.
After the obligatory pre-encore break, those who were there for the hits finally got their wish as the band rolled out favourites such as You’re Fuckin’ Awesome and Black Betty. It was at this point that Spiderbait finally had everyone, and deservedly so, losing their freakin’ minds.
Words by Dan Wallwork
Image by David Harris
Highlight: The flashbacks.
Lowlight: The flashbacks.
Crowd Favourite: You’re Fuckin’ Awesome… No Spiderbait, you’re fuckin’ awesome.