The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - FRONT PAGE - SALLY COATES

Saturday night will be the sec­ond time Bliss n Eso per­form on the Gold Coast this year. The first show, held in early March, was a tribute to raise funds for the fam­ily of Jo­hann Ofner, the lo­cal stunt­man who was trag­i­cally killed in an ac­ci­dent while film­ing one of the group’s mu­sic videos.

Now, ahead of the show, MC Max MacKinnon says the wounds are still raw but the shows are part of the heal­ing process for ev­ery­one in­volved.

“It’s ob­vi­ously dev­as­tat­ing, such a sad sit­u­a­tion,” he says.

“We held the ben­e­fit show to cel­e­brate Jo­hann’s life and to mourn – the main thing for us was to show our sup­port and love.

“It was good for us and the fam­ily to have a spe­cial mo­ment be­cause for me there was a big ques­tion mark be­fore we met each other on that day.

“It was touch­ing, emo­tional, there was a lot of love but it was a spe­cial love, it was un­like any­thing we’d ever en­coun­tered be­fore and I think this show will be very sim­i­lar.

“Friend Like You will al­ways be about Jo­hann.”

The song Max men­tions is part of the al­bum the group are tour­ing, Off the Grid, but with six al­bums, two EPs and 17 years of mu­sic, it must be hard to whit­tle down the songlist to fit within a sin­gle show.

“We know the songs we’ve done a lit­tle too much, but we re­cently looked at Spo­tify and it shows you the pop­u­lar songs peo­ple are stream­ing,” Max says.

“There are cer­tain songs I thought would have been played more and songs I thought peo­ple would have for­got­ten about.

“So that’s a good in­di­ca­tion of what peo­ple are lis­ten­ing to and what the crowd wants when we tour.”

Spo­tify is a valu­able tool for artists and there’s no deny­ing so­cial me­dia plat­forms have added a whole new el­e­ment of pro­mo­tion and fan in­ter­ac­tion for mu­si­cians, but as the tour name sug­gests, Max wants peo­ple to dis­con­nect.

“With Off the Grid I’m talk­ing un­plug­ging from the sys­tem, like in Tron when he re­alises he’s got free­dom and breaks off the line,” he says.

“We need to get off the grid, un­learn the neg­a­tive trained ways of the hu­man brain, step back look at it, go to the mid­dle of the woods and breathe in and out and tell them that’s not liv­ing.

“We’re a bunch of cre­ative, silly bloody day­dream­ers, we need to seize that and think for our­selves.

“Peo­ple think that get­ting off the grid is go­ing out to a farm for the week­end but it’s not just that, it’s much big­ger than that.

“Ob­vi­ously it’s all about what­ever makes that hu­man be­ing happy, but I would sug­gest you live in the mo­ment a lit­tle bit more.”

For Max, right now life is go­ing pretty great. He’s got this new al­bum, a mam­moth tour and he gets to ex­pe­ri­ence all of it with his wife and new baby boy.

“They’ll be com­ing along to a few shows; I’ve got some cus­tom Stormtrooper ear­muffs for him, we love Star Wars in this house,” he says. “I’m as cre­ative and en­thu­si­as­tic about the mu­sic around my son as I am in the stu­dio.

“We like to dance, we like to be silly, he’s around when I’m writ­ing the lyrics.

“I don’t know how sin­gle mums do it – my mother did it and I’ve got to give that praise.

“It’s an un­be­liev­able job they do.”

Bliss n Eso per­form at NightQuar­ter this Saturday night. Tick­ets from Oztix.


Pop­u­lar Aus­tralian hip hop group Bliss n Eso are re­turn­ing to the Gold Coast to play at NightQuar­ter on Saturday night.

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