Brunswick’s rock bastion Whole Lotta Love celebrate 11 years with 11 special gigs

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Brunswick’s rock bastion Whole Lotta Love celebrate 11 years with 11 special gigs

Whole Lotta Love are turning it up to 11 throughout July to celebrate their 11th birthday - few deserve a big self-congratulatory bash more than these legends.

Whole Lotta Love, or “The Whole” as it is affectionately known, is one of Melbourne’s premier small dive bars and live music venues. With Led Zeppelin murals on the walls, the backdrop to the stage is one of the most iconic and recognisable around. Established in 2011, The Whole has been supporting bands of all genres to hone their craft and has been a launching pad for them to make their name in this scene.

A bastion of the local music scene that gives as many acts as possible a chance to perform – whether it’s your first gig ever or you’re a bigger artist looking to sell out a more intimate show. They’re small, but they pack a punch, you can get cosy in this small venue or hang out in their wood-panelled garden with heaters and umbrellas.

Whole Lotta Love

Live music takes place on the front stage. With standing room only, they’re up and close, intimate gigs.
Famous for the friendly staff and locals, if it’s your first time, or your hundredth visit, you’ll always be welcomed at Whole Lotta Love and feel right at home
Infamous for their Led Zeppelin murals – the rock legends take up the entire back wall watching over you as you enjoy your beer, while the stage backdrop is one of the most recognisable around.

Check out Melbourne’s most comprehensive gig guide here. 

Supporting local artists at all points of their career, the musicians perform on a stage that faces the small and intimate bar, making it the perfect place to get up close and personal with an up-and-coming act. They’re a Led Zeppelin themed bar, but they support a diverse range of genres, running everything from open mic nights and acoustic showcases, to brutal metal or groove laden blues. Come for the bands, stay for the vibes.

Now, after surviving a pandemic, state of emergency, lockdowns, development threats, and just the challenge of operating a live music venue in Melbourne, The Whole Crew are celebrating the last 11 years with 11 special gigs throughout July, and you are all invited to be part of it.

There have been some big names grace the stage at Whole Lotta Love, including Page Hamilton (Helmet), Steph Carpenter (Deftones), Jon Toogood (Shihad), and Sarah McLeod (Super Jesus) to name a few… but that doesn’t mean you wont come in on a weekend to see a young band playing their first ever gig. It is a venue for everyone.

What’s on at Whole Lotta Love this month

Fri July 1, 7:30 pm: Square Dance Caller “Daze In Technicolor” EP Launch + Gordon Holland Band + Grand Baxter

Formed in 2021, Square Dance Caller is a four piece Melbourne-based groove rock band featuring brothers Brendan and Michael Etherington with mates Mat Hooler and James Manning. Joining them are alt country singer songwriter Gordon Holland and band.

Considered songwriting, bitter-sweet lyrics and a sprinkling of country-folk influence are all clearly audible in Grand Baxter’s music. Songs dance between the dark, the delicate, and the cautiously optimistic, with beautiful acoustic guitars and crunchy honky electrics at centre stage.

Sat July 2, A Gazillion Angry Mexicans + The Evils + The Lyle Jenkins Blues Project + Sordid Ordeal

It would not be a Whole Lotta Love Birthday party without A Gazillion Angry Mexicans hitting the stage. Fresh off the back of their UK tour, the boys are back home and ready to rip The Whole a new one! Joining them are riff laden rock and rollers The Evils, wearing jumpsuits and the joy of painting aren’t their only skills!
The Lyle Jenkins Blues Project rises for one night only. With soulful swagger from guitarists Luke Jones and Jake Underwood, smooth grooves from bassist Thom Swain and the soaring vocals of Milly Moon, the Lyle Jenkins Blues Project is set to warm your cold hearts this wintery Saturday. Sweaty hard rock legends Sordid Ordeal are back for their third Whole Lotta Love Birthday party. You will recognise Laurence’s hair from the front of almost every stage in Melbourne, now witness it again from on the stage! It’s free entry… FREE… because we want everyone to be able to come on down and party like it 2011 again… just like when Whole Lotta Love first opened!

Sun July 3, 7:00 pm: Superdiver + The White Poppies

Superdiver is an alternative rock band from Melbourne with influences ranging from dark post punk to spacey post rock, while The White Poppies are a sideways Melbourne based alternative rock band. This one’s free entry, folks!

Sat July 9, 7:30 pm: The Monaros + Shadow League + Aluminum Monster

With 20 years of legendary rock anthems behind them, The Monaros live is the most fun you can have at a gig. Put them with two guys who play songs that make you feel feelings you didn’t know you had, all while sounding like there is four of them, that’s Shadow League. Plus four jerks who like drinking beer and playing songs based on the greatest ever TV show, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, Aluminum Monster…

Sat July 16, 7:00 pm: Neptune Power Federation + The Stripp + Bastard North + Eat The Damn Orange

Like all great threats to decency, the church of The Neptune Power Federation was born far from the dull gaze of the masses. Operating out of dive bars and biker clubhouses, playing to troubled souls with dirty hair and crude intentions, their high volume psychedelic gospel spread like a glorious subterranean infection. In the pulpit is Imperial Priestess Screaming Loz Sutch, her backing band consists of battle worn soldiers from the Australian underground punk, stoner and metal scenes who have long forgotten their former existences and are now forever beholden to her mesmeric lure.

The Stripp are a high-energy, turbo-charged, rock‘n’roll machine storming out of the gates of Melbourne’s underground rock scene. Fronted by Bek Taylor, best described as the love child of Joan Jett and Lemmy Kilmister, the band’s unique heavy style, captivating live shows and extensive touring has gained them a reputation as one of Australia’s finest, high-energy rock n roll bands.

With their visual assault and super energetic live shows, a Bastard North show is an experience like few others. Eat The Damn Orange are Melbourne premier citrus flavoured rock band, with Tash’s powerhouse vocals and their thumping riffs, you wont be able to hear for days.

Fri July 22, 7:00 pm: Admiral Ackbars Dishonourable Discharge + The Murderballs + Udder Ubductees + more TBA

Admiral Ackbar’s Dishonourable Discharge are like this: imagine your lounge room with a hundred of your closest mates and you’re about there with the vibe and atmosphere. The band had a crazy and chaotic groove going on, recalling the criminally underrated American band Fishbone. A real treat in a strong line-up.

The Murderballs are Melbourne’s 16.5th favourite funky punk band. Playing with a driven and strong punk rock vibe, mixed with funky grooves, anyone can enjoy The Murderballs. Udder Ubductees are like your very worst cheese dreams come to life….with matching hats.

Sat July 23: PISSBOLT + Algaroth + Irreparable

A night filled with thrash and metal – joining are Pissbolt with bolts of thrash pissing down on the dregs of society, and Irreparable incorporating elements of industrial black metal, doom and darkwave.

Sun July 24: New York Minutes with Damn Fine Chai

A Sunday evening of funky blues and soul. This time New York Minutes will be doing two sets, giving you more groove featuring their new vocalist and the most snazzy brass in town. Opening the evening with their cool vibes is Damn Fine Chai.

Fri July 29, 7:00 pm: DevilMonkey + The Nuremberg Code + Rat Kangaroo + Long Hours

If you hear strong bass driven, hard electro dub punk metal filled to the gills with catchy industrial drum grooves and fast paced action-packed audio anarchy, you are listening to DevilMonkey.  The Nuremberg Code keep it real, the sound is real, the people are real. This is some badass genre mashed metal. Rat Kangaroo haven’t hit the stage yet in 2022; post punk / experimental / art punk, it’s a show that cannot easily be described, but one that will stay in your mind.

Long Hours is a solo project by Julian Medor consisting of literally in your face screaming vocals, wild band room antics (he doesn’t spend much time on the stage to be honest), and a post punk / industrial rock vibe that draws you in and keeps you completely focused on everything he is doing.

Sat July 30, 6:30 pm: I Am Duckeye + Nephalem + Rattleback + Vipers

I Am Duckeye are a furious DIY train wreck of a band that incorporates punk rock, metal and comedy with questionable results. Hardcore Satanic Boogiers Nephalem bring the groove and the growls to the stage every god-damn-time they play… and who knows, this time they may just actually summon Satan.

Rattleback are supreme hardcore chaos merchants that are faster than highway patrol but not as friendly… or are they? Vipers will bring their chaotic and abrasive strain of hardcore punk.

Rock out at Whole Lotta Love by heading to 524 Lygon Street, Brunswick East. They’re open from 4pm Tuesday to Sunday.