Although Melbourne retains a certain amount of charm during the cooler months (there are few cities more aesthetically suited to grey skylines and light drizzle), one of the associated drawbacks is the hibernation of our many outdoor cinemas. The group behind The Shadow Electric, operating from the grounds of the Abbotsford Convent, are so keen to once again become a fixture in people's schedules that they’ve organised a bumper run of live music to prepare for the commencement of screenings on November 21.
From November 1 to 10, the new Shadow Electric Bandroom, located in the Convent’s oldest building, will host 12 shows by a variety of Australian artists. Whether it’s an extravagant display of showmanship from the likes of The Bombay Royale or The Spoils, a dose of indie pop from Pluto Jonze or a swagger of Australian music royalty with The Ape (featuring Tex Perkins, Raul Sanchez, Gus Agars and Pat Bourke), there’s something for almost everyone in this series of concerts.
Functioning as a launching pad for the summer of ourdoor cinema, the performances – which will also feature artists such as Courtney Barnett, Bored Nothing, Ben Salter and Palms – are the perfect way to inject some life into the Convent grounds, as well as an ideal opportunity to celebrate some local talent, both well-known and unheralded. The diverse range of acts suits an institution that prides itself on an extraordinary breadth of material during the screening season – it’s not unusual to see 16 Candles appear next to Boyz N The Hood and Robocop, with a little Saturday Night Fever thrown in for good measure. The Shadow Electric is back, baby, and it’s already sounding good.