The Best of Norm’s

Posted on August 19, 2018
stage from befores crypt under the norms banner all lit in neon

It seems like a best of is an obvious post to make and looking at the list of acts I’ve seen… I like a lot of them. It’s a personal list based on not just the music but the rest of the performance and how it moves me. So garage/punk rock has an easy ride.

Bands in chronological order because yeah:

Happy Coloured Marbles

First norms night and I was nervous as fuck in a new place but every act was good enough I had fun through the anxiety. Got quite vivid memories about HCM playing I can’t seem to shake you, a song about temptation, when I someone in the crowd offered me something I knew I couldn’t have. They have three songs on soundcloud but I want to buy an EP. If now’s not the time… then when is?

Dr Clyde

It hadn’t even been that long since I had last seen Dr Clyde but they are so good live. More genres than I can name blended beautifully. There’s a surreal weirdness to the spoken word over psychedelic rock that I love. Weirder still dancing next to a proud mother of one of the band. She was having fun.

Saturday Morning Breakfast Show

There is so much I could say about SMBS. It all boils down to I’ve listened to the EP so many times I got unnerved hearing him play live with a different arrangement. I think his work is beautiful - Ties is my least favourite song of the four but I still adore it - and I need to put Tankhouse on right now. It has bits that sound like glitter and the heavily distorted guitar I love in one.

Ellie Bleach

I love the can I say in the car EP. Mood ring is my fave and she’s moving a new direction and I love that too. There’s this dreamlike quality. A tenderness. Her new music video just came out - features Hali who I saw play the week after - and I have a new shower singing track.

Bootleg Bart

Fuck off, I like Simponswave. It’s a dreamy mess and chill and there is such a rich history of remix culture around the Simpsons. I promised myself to stop being late after this because I regret missing out on some of his set. I’m still late on occasion but ya know.

The Bad Apples

See them live. See them make a mess. Death of Rock and Roll is a work of art that can only be witnessed. The energy in the room and the yelling and the bodies. I don’t even know if they are good at music because all I can think about is the experience. Exactly what I want from a gig - to get caught up in a wave of energy and communal experience until my brain problems melt out of my ears.

Soyuz Rats

For the same reason as The Bad Apples. I could feel the music in the skin between my fingers. Thick and heavy. I just stood their and stared at their hands as they played fast and fancy. There’s a sinister undertone to some of it. A creeping tension. I like that.


It was their album launch surrounded by their friends. The enthusiasm of both band and audience was infectious. Punky garage rock (though I think they play in a shed). his was one of the hottest days of the year and after that dancing the floor was more soaked with water and sweat than I’d seen in a while.

Peach Club

Gigs can be a bit of a sausagefest. Peach Club have opinions about that. I wish I had heard bands like that when I was 13. They are going to carve a place for themselves, even if the world might make that place small. They were so fun and people clapping along to Bad Bitch was a delight.


I’m sure some people left after Peach Club and they were fools. Sharkmuffin did a good job with a strange crowd. They got people dancing to songs they hadn’t heard before. It was more punky girl power fun just from the other side of the pond. Another band full of energy and a great sendoff.

Appendix: A list of what I have seen

Some of these were really clearly talented (like Georgia King) but weren’t the sort of genre that gets me excited or had the crowd to build energy off of.

April 6
Happy Coloured Marbles, We’ll be Detectives, Simple City Dress
May 4
Dr Clyde, Saturday Morning Breakfast Show, The Three of Us
May 11
Ellie Bleach, Painted Heathers, Vier
May 25
Georgia King, Eyera, Hali, (missed Leifxmathi)
May 30
Luke Peter Foster, BlipTrip, King Porteous, Tipsy Lizard, Bootleg Bart
June 1 (until 10pm)
Lounge, Hugo Z, (left before Marla, sorry)
June 8
Gladboy, The Bad Apples, The Lantern Men + DJ Col Wolfe
June 29
Soyuz Rats, Painted Heathers, The Cosmic Order
July 27
Renadeans, Vier, Space is Big
August 2
Sharkmuffin, Peach Club, Fever Machine, Elly Bishop