The best gigs, events and festivals happening across regional Victoria this May
02.05.2022

The best gigs, events and festivals happening across regional Victoria this May

The Rubens

The best upcoming gigs, live music and concerts in Geelong, Ballarat, Bendigo, Torquay and more.

It is happening, folks. This month sees an event that will help shape the country for years to come. And with an uncertainty that has found its way into the lives even of those generally more assured, being able to lend one’s voice is arguably more important now than it has been for many years. Top Gun: Maverick looks set for release.

It has been a bumpy ride, to be sure. It has been years since Australians have felt secure. Quiet Australians have felt their voice dampened even more. Between COVID-19, fires and floods and cost of living, it has all appeared rather hopeless for so long. We’ve been pushed and pulled time and time again, screaming in frustration that our grievances are being ignored. But Tom Cruise hasn’t ignored you. Tom Cruise knows what’s up. Tom Cruise can help makes things right. And Tom, as well as your friends at Forte, hopes this movie news cracks the grey skies with a beautiful, soft light. 

You also have all these wonderful, wonderful gigs.  

Just remember to check band or venue socials to keep up with the latest updates. 

Comedy Roadshow – Ulumbarra Theatre, Bendigo on May 3

Are you a big belly laugher or a reserved chuckler? Are you a snorter or a chortler? All are welcome at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival roadshow.  

Paraquay – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 5

Because we know just how supportive you are, Paraquay are gearing up for the launch of their new EP. They will be joined by Left at the Avenue and The White Flower Society. 

The Rubens – Torquay Hotel, Torquay on May 6

Comprised of three brothers and a couple of mates, The Rubens are kicking out their feel-good jams, including their new single in ‘Waste a Day’.

OK Motels – Geelong West Town Hall on May 6

OK Motels are at it again, so check in and enjoy the sweet sounds of Cash Savage & the Last Drinks, Floodlights, The Skips and The White Flower Society. 

 

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Bonsai Records + Friends – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 6

The favourite label of Mr. Miyagi, Bonsai Records + Friends is putting on a showcase featuring Winksy, Sirens, Fenn Wilson, Pollyman, Ella Sweeney and Bones and Jones. 

Eamon Dilworth’s Crawfish PoBoys – Pistol Pete’s, Geelong on May 6

Inspired by the likes of Dr John, Professor Longhair and Kermit Ruffins, this is a New Orleans street party in your backyard.  

Mess Esque – New Hall, Point Lonsdale on May 6

Mess Esque is the collaboration between Mick Turner (Dirty Three) and Helen Franzmann, aka McKisko. Their first LP is Dream #12

Pierce Brothers – Halls Gap Hotel, Halls Gap on May 6

Soon enough, Pierce Brothers will be playing shows in the UK, Germany and Prague. But before all that, they have local business to attend to. 

Dave Graney & Clare Moore – Volta, Ballarat on May 6 

With more than 40 albums under their belt, including their latest Everything Was Funny, you never quite know what you’re going to get from Dave Graney and Clare Moore. 

 

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Juan Alban & the Resentments – The Eastern, Ballarat on May 6

Ex-frontman of Epicure, Juan Alban and his band the Replacements will shine a light on their dreamy new tunes, Resentment Central.  

Ross Wilson – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine on May 6

Through his work with Daddy Cool, Mondo Rock and as a solo artist, Ross Wilson has 26 ARIA Top 40 hits to his credit. That’s worthy of doing the Eagle Rock. 

Nat Vazer – The Bridge, Castlemaine on May 6

Nominated for an AMP and a Top 20 pick in NME Australia’s albums of 2020, Nat Vazer is taking her album Is this Offensive and Loud? to the people.  

Human Nature – Lighthouse Theatre, Warrnambool – May 6 & 7

Human Nature are stripping things back with an acoustic performance of songs including ‘Telling Everybody’, ‘Wishes’, ‘When You Say You Love Me’ and ‘Reach Out I’ll Be There’.

Kasey Chambers & Busby Marou – Ulumbarra Theatre, Bendigo on May 6 & Costa Hall, Geelong on May 8

The Barricades & Brickwalls tour gives Kasey Chambers a chance to revisit her triumphant second album, an experience made all the better with good mates Busby Marou. 

Geelong Bus Tour – May 7

Departing from the iconic Barwon Club, the Geelong Bus tour features a special guest as music lovers are taken on a guided tour of Geelong’s best bits.  

 

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Ed Kuepper & Jim White – Macedon Railway Hotel, Macedon on May 7

What began in May of 2021 is finally being given its proper turn, with Ed Kuepper (The Saints) and Jim White (Dirty Three) teaming up for a very special evening. 

Burning Love – The Engine Room, Bendigo on May 7 & 21 (and June 4 & 11)

Coinciding with Bendigo’s Elvis exhibition, Burning Love explores the genres popularised by the music legend. Emma Donovan & the Putbacks will shake their hips on May 7.  

Dragon – Wool Exchange Entertainment Complex, Geelong on May 7

It Comes in Threes is a pretty cool little show put together by Dragon, who have picked three hit songs from each album to perform for your nostalgic pleasure.

Mia Dyson – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine on May 7

When it came to the fifteen-year anniversary of Parking Lots, Mia Dyson decided to revisit five tracks and give them a reimagining. 

Press Club – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 7

“We’re here to reunite with the tarmac,” said Press Club bassist Iain MacRae ahead of their Cancel This tour. The band will release their third album this year, too.  

 

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Battlesnake – Volta, Ballarat on May 7

For those moments where you dig deep and find a power within you that you didn’t think possible, Battlesnake provides the soundtrack. 

Do the Pop Fundraiser – Phoenix Park, Ballan on May 7

Enjoy a festival/fundraiser that welcomes Grindhouse, Juliette Seizure & the Tremor Dolls, DEAD, Dom Fernando, The Monaros, The Wardens and The Dive Bombs. 

Caitlin Harnett & the Pony Boys – The Bridge, Castlemaine on May 7 & Barwon Club, Geelong on May 8

With their debut album Late Night Essentials still pleasing the ears, Caitlin Harnett & the Pony Boys are hitting the road to road-test songs from their upcoming album. 

Hannah Blackburn – The Bridge, Castlemaine on May 8 (3pm) 

If Hannah Blackburn had listened to feedback from her primary school talent quest days, we may never have had her joy. And that wouldn’t be good for anyone. 

 

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Little Tornadoes – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine on May 11

Following its premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival, Little Tornadoes will receive a special preview in Castlemaine, followed by a Q&A with the cast and crew. 

Black Rheno – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 12

Brutal sludge groove mixed with a dose of grind? You’re gonna love Black Rheno. Check them out on tour showing off new single, ‘Flea Ridden’.  

Bendigo Writers Festival – Bendigo from May 12-15

More than 100 presenters make up this year’s Bendigo Writers Festival. Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love) and cricketing great Michael Holding will live stream events. 

Travis Collins – Gateway Hotel, Corio on May 13

CMAA Male Artist of the Year and RUOK? Day ambassador Travis Collins is hitting the road to paint the town red with his country gems.

Magic Dirt – Torquay Hotel, Torquay on April 13

Magic Dirt has been rocking the pants off music-loving folk since 1991. If you haven’t had your pants rocked off, chances are you know someone who has.  

Mightiest of Guns – Major Tom’s, Kyneton on May 13

From fuzzed-out Australian rock to growling noir country, Melbourne outfit Mightiest of Guns are hitting the road with new single, ‘Give it a Rest’. 

Super American Eagle – The Bridge, Castlemaine on May 13

The eagle has landed with Super American Eagle, a rock outfit featuring members of The Dandy Warhols and Courtney Barnett and Immigrant Union. 

Foggy Notion – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 13

Originally formed as a two-piece, the more buff Foggy Notion performs dreamy pop with the tug of a teardrop. You can enjoy their new album, Vol.2

The Mojo Corner – Pistol Pete’s, Geelong on May 14

A band that’s always up for a good time and a beer or two is a good band for sure. The Mojo Corner’s latest album is Live at Manorism Studio

The Smallgoods – The Bridge, Castlemaine on May 14

It has been a while, but Melbourne indie-pop darlings The Smallgoods are finally able to launch their third album, Lost in the Woods

 

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Requiem – The Eastern, Ballarat on May 14

With a heavy-hitting heart, Ballarat extreme metal outfit Requiem are swinging by their local for their final show. Guests include Shatter Brain. 

Camp Cope – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine on May 14

Exploring what happens after chaos hits and calmer waters follow, Running with the Hurricane is the new album from Melbourne outfit Camp Cope. 

Teeny Tiny Stevies – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine on May 14 (10am)

Here is one for the little ones. Teeny Tiny Stevies are taking their 2020 ARIA-winning album Thoughtful Songs for Little People on the road. 

Mako Road – Torquay Hotel, Torquay on May 15

Put the welcome mat out and stock the fridge because some Kiwi neighbours in Mako Road are coming our way for a run of new and rescheduled dates. 

Mindy Meng Wang & Tim Shiel – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine on May 15

The Nervous Energy tour is a collaborative project between avant-garde composer Mindy Meng Wang and her Melbourne-based contemporary, Tim Shiel. 

Jess Ball – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 15

If you can’t get enough of singles ‘Thank You’ and ‘Upside Down’, you will be pleased to know that Jess Ball has some more goods for you in 2022.

Daniel Champagne – Queenscliff Town Hall, Queenscliff on May 19; Kyneton Town Hall, Kyneton on May 26; and Bendigo Bank Theatre, Bendigo on May 28  

Regarded as one of the finest guitar players of his generation, Daniel Champagne is smoking up the fretboard with his new song, ‘The Pursuit’.

Bugs – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 20

Finally, a case of the cooties everyone wants. Brisbane pop-rock outfit Bugs are exploring early relationships with their new album, Cooties.  

Frenzal Rhomb – Torquay Hotel, Torquay on May 21

Queen Elizabeth apparently called 1992 ‘annus horribilis’. Then she heard Frenzal Rhomb for the first time that year, and we all know how that turned out for her. 

Summer’s Almost Gone – The Red Hill Hotel, Chewton on May 21

Put on a light sweater and enjoy an autumn blue’s bash with Willie J & the Bad Books, Georgia Rodgers, Dan Simons and Highway 79. 

Analogue Sounds – The Palais, Hepburn Springs on May 21

Analogue Sounds is getting cosy with blues, roots and Americana. This particular show welcomes the double bill of Paper Jane and Dave Wright & the Midnight Ramblers.

Oscar Lush – The Bridge, Castlemaine on May 21

Local singer-songwriter Oscar Lush is currently working on the follow-up to his 2019 album Black Dog, so if you play your cards right you may hear something new. 

Warped – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 21

They’ve been going three decades and it is still not enough for Warped. Celebrate the milestone, along with Future Tongues, Thee Cha Cha Chas and Swedish Magazines. 

Burning Love – The Engine Room, Bendigo on May 21

Coinciding with Bendigo’s Elvis exhibition, Burning Love explores the genres popularised by the music legend. Gabriella Cohen will perform on May 21.   

Kamahl – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine on May 21

Words and songs will come together when Kamahl celebrates a career spanning almost seven decades. It is the kindest show you’ll attend all year.  

Lisa Mitchell  – Volta, Ballarat on May 21 & Anglesea Memorial Hall, Anglesea on May 28

She has kept us waiting, but you know what they say about good things. Lisa Mitchell has finally released her fourth album, A Place to Fall Apart.  

 

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Fancy Face – The Bridge, Castlemaine on May 22

Fancy Face is influenced by the likes of Dope Lemon, The Murlocs, The Nude Party and The Delta Riggs. It should be noted, however, they have fancier faces. 

Celebrating Grant Smith – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 22

Lucky Suns, Greenhouse, Reil Diamond, Madhouse, Rock Dog DJ, Sweaty Campers, The Swells and Rank will be out in full force to celebrate the life of the late Grant Smith. 

BANFF – Village Cinemas, Geelong on May 25

The BANFF Mountain Film Festival is a best of the best collection of short films and docos about mountain culture, sports and the environment. 

This Way North & Mark Lang – Town Hall, Ararat on May 25 & Old Church on the Hill, Bendigo on May 27 

Indie pop-rock two-piece This Way North and old mate Mark Lang (Skipping Girl Vinegar) are joining forces to provide regional Victoria with a little music treat. 

Holy Holy – Torquay Hotel, Torquay on May 26

Released last year, Holy Holy’s fourth album, Hello My Beautiful World, saw the indie-rock outfit reach their highest ARIA Chart position of #4. 

Augie March – The Bridge, Castlemaine on May 26 & Anglesea Memorial Hall, Anglesea on May 27 

Some 25 or so years ago, Augie March played their first gig at a friend’s art gallery exhibition. Their latest release is Bloodsport and Porn

Bad Bangs – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 27

Forget your character building exercises and instead just grab a copy of Character Building, the debut album from garage rockers Bad Bangs. It will do you wonders. 

M79 – The Bridge, Castlemaine on May 27

Formed in Castlemaine, M79 fuse electro-funk, Eastern-European reggae, RnB and swinging psych-pop for your listening pleasure.  

Paul Dempsey – Torquay Hotel, Torquay on May 26 & Theatre Royal, Castlemaine on June 4

You won’t want to be caught napping here, as Paul Dempsey has announced a trim and tidy five shows of solo, intimate performances. 

The Bronx – Barwon Club, Geelong on May 28

Notching up 20 years in the game in 2022, US rockers The Bronx are hitting Australian shores for the first time since 2018. 

 

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Electric Mary – Volta, Ballarat on May 28

Named after Mary Campbell, friend and manager of Jimi Hendrix, Electric Mary is a classic rock band from Melbourne. 

The Rebelles – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine on May 28

The Rebelles are cranking up the amps and donning the leather for Road to Ruin, a show that will pay homage to the Ramones. 

The Stanley Records Travelling Medicine Show – Pistol Pete’s Geelong on May 29

Katie Briana, Ben Leece & Left of the Dial, Dave Favours & the Roadside Ashes and Sam Shinazzi serve up a feast of Americana, alt-country, cowpunk and rock and roll.  

Glenn Shorrock – Macedon Railway Hotel, Macedon on May 29

A founding member of The Twilights, Axiom and Little River Band, Glenn Shorrock has been living the music life for much of his. In 2016 he released Rise Again.