NONSTOP WKND: One of the biggest music weekends of the year is happening this September for Now or Never

Get the latest from Beat


NONSTOP WKND: One of the biggest music weekends of the year is happening this September for Now or Never

Words by Luke Carlino

Now or Never ends across September 1-2 with 13 unique shows that comprise NONSTOP WKND.

If you’re working for the weekend, you’ll find one of the biggest weekends of the year in September; NONSTOP WKND.

The awesome run of Melbourne’s new Now or Never will end with this event on the first weekend of September, featuring 13 shows across six venues. The focus will be electronic music mixed with cutting-edge audio-visuals, horizon-broadening talks and boundary-pushing performances.

We take a look at the various offerings to help you pick your path and playlist, while mapping out how to spend what may potentially be the wildest and most wonderful weekend of your year.

Keep up with the latest music news, features, festivals, interviews and reviews here.

Coalesce 005

Coalesce 005 brings Alice Longyu Gao over from the US to headline this electronic foray into the future at Max Watts. With support from pop-rap/glitchcore artist SEBii, Prophecy Girl fresh from a Charlie XCX support and local punk outfit Resenter, and more, this is the best way to familiarise yourself with the current state of alternative electronica.

Queer PowerPoint


Sometimes, old tech is still cool, and Queer PowerPoint is here to prove it. Get ready for some quirky, funny and outrageous deep dives into various topics you’ve never troubled yourself with, all via the classic and timeless PowerPOint medium at The Toff. Sydney-siders loved it; now it’s our turn.

Music for Funerals


A range of ambient, experimental and Avant-garde artists create the original soundtracks and settings for their own funerals at The Toff’s aptly titled Music for Funerals. You are encouraged to come dressed in your best casket gown for this esoteric mix of music, theatre, dance and video art.

POP PLUS co-presented by Curveball


It’s non-stop performances at The Curtain from a host of local acts who will reinvent, remix, and reimagine their tunes in POP PLUS. Acts including Dragonfruit, DoloRRes, Georgie Darvidis and more will destroy and rebuild their identities live via originals and covers, bending genres like never before.



You may be familiar with the multidisciplinary club experience, Powertrip, which has a special iteration for NONSTOP WKND featuring Chicago’s Traxman, New York’s Jasmine Infiniti and local legend Crake. They will perform alongside dancers and choreographers Mara Gallagher and Alexander Power, exploring the fear of death and the soul’s immortality.

Sample Section 8

Everyone’s favourite shipping containers are putting on a free event called Sample, allowing you to watch a host of local acts create beats in real-time. Glimpse behind the production curtain with a sampling session via Ableton to flip and subvert sounds to push the boundaries of beat-making. You’ll even get a free take-home beat sample pack to safely put in your pocket before things evolve into a good old-fashioned Section 8 party at night.

Xhabarabot Voice Machines


This innovative project from artist and musician Rully Shabara (Senyawa) transforms the human voice into data, merging sound identities with cutting-edge technology in Xhabarabot. Part lecture, part discussion and part demonstration, the conventional understanding of voice exploration and creative expression will be suitably turned on their heads.

Hot Toff Disco


Local music collective 6am at the Garage will be throwing a party at The Toff inspired by the underground parties of 1970s Greenwich Village. Indonesian selector DITA, funk/soul outfit Japan’s Sauce81, producer Jura Soundsystem, and our very own DJ Asha Franco will helm an all-night house, disco and boogie party for the ages for Hot Toff Disco. Bring your booty.



Miscellania is the home of experimental music, and for Enclave, it’s hosting a huge line-up of local and international artists headlined by Paris’ Low Jack. Local powerhouse Karina Utomo will unleash a new noise and bass performance with many other experimental performances, and DJ sets across the 10-act bill of beautiful chaos. 

Meanwhile, fellow headliner Nazar – godfather of the rough kuduro genre – will play a dense and heavy live set, connecting dots between different sounds of contemporary African/diasporic dance music like gqom, batida and more abrasive noise. 

Planetary Auditions

  • Sat 2 Sep
  • RMIT – Design Hub Gallery

RMIT’s Design Hub Gallery will host a free event called Planetary Auditions, exploring the intersections of sound, listening, ecology, machine learning and AI across a range of performances and talks led by Catherine Ryan, who will link the history of experimental electronic music with notions of planetary and civilisational collapse to ease you into your time off work. A range of similar mind-breaking talks will take place throughout this Saturday as part of this program, so keep an eye out for times and details soon.

Anti Fade Records

Geelong label Anti Fade Records blow the dust off of some acts rarely seen on Melbourne stages for a night of punk at The Curtain. See old-school punkers The UV Race, dub/funk/punk sextet EXEK, and new-to-the-scene locals Delivery, all backed by visuals from local artist Rowena Lloyd. It’s a bunch of rare stuff that you won’t catch in one spot ever again (probably).



Get ready for some dancing at Max Watts with SPASTA, which describes the practice of smashing plates. UK artist Jamie Tiller, Hong Kong’s Ani Phoebe, Australian-Colombian sound system, and more will supply worldly club sounds, Pontian dancing and some Zorba if you supply the plates.

Bloody Minded


The Sub Club Melbourne basement will turn into a hardware techno wonderland for Bloody Minded as Container (US), Jung An Tagen (AT), Jannah Quill, and Various Asses provide a night of pulsing techno with dystopian visuals by Malaysian/Australian multimedia artist, Tristan Jalleh. It’s a bunch of world-class hardware techno with a complimenting audio-visual experience that will change you.

Grab a one or two-day pass for access to events across all NONSTOP WKND venues from September 1-2, including the Toff, Miscellania, Max Watts, Sub Club, John Curtin and Section 8 by heading to the website here.

Beat is an official media partner of Now or Never.