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A Where2sing.com exclusive Karaoke Gig Review

Finnigans Chin Irish Pub karaoke venue review on www.where2sing.com

REVIEW: Finnigan's Chin


The main street of Kallangur, north of Brisbane, is long and straight and lined variously with houses and shops. And, as you'd expect, the occasional pub. But Finnigan's Chin is not really the sort of pub you'd expect here, being set into a small group of shops on the edge of a carpark.

It's obviously the hub of local entertainment, judging by the number of cars and the people wandering in and out. I parked and made my way to one of the entrances, noting a small poster that promised karaoke. As I entered the end of a long narrow bar, I could see the pokie room on my right, and got a beer from the gentleman now standing in front of me. The feeling here was friendly and laid back, and after giving me my change, he also gave me a ticket because 'your next beer is free' he stated.

The karaoke was at the other end of the pub, and so I wandered off in that direction. The building is obviously in reality a few re-worked shops in a line, and thus easy to navigate, but the interior has been extensively and creatively decorated. Beer in hand, I progressed into a room that was more or less round in shape, a central dance floor with the main part of the room being not much larger than the dance floor, and with low tables and chair set around the perimeter. Built above and around the outside of the room is a wooden balcony, and above that - and all around the room at that 'first floor' height - is a fantasy world of shop fronts and all manner of 19th century oddments. An artist has had inspiration, a designer has shoehorned it into a small area, and a builder has obviously had fun making it reality - and the result is really quite interesting.

Interesting but possibly impractical, because we are left with a small open space serving as a dance floor but through which everyone must walk in order to gain access to anywhere else, and a space around the sides rather too small to serve as anything other than little areas for tables and chairs. Worse, the karaoke is set up in another room looking rather like an oversized alcove, but which has a raised floor and therefore seems like a stage - but beyond all practical use.

I'd better explain this more fully:
At the end of the circular room is a gap, perhaps three metres wide, and beyond this is another room with a higher floor level and on which the karaoke is set up and where the singer stands, but it is only possible to see this through the narrow entrance to the room. A couple of sturdy columns supporting the upstairs fantasy world are placed in front of the small room entrance and further impede vision. And so, anyone wanting to see the singer needs to stand almost directly in line with the entrance to that small room.

I sat to the side, in the only seating left that had a hope of allowing a view of the singer, and I could just see him round the side of one column. As he finished the song, I realised he was the host, and he welcomed us all to the karaoke and announced that the next singer was the first of the night. But I now remember, writing this review, that the lady techie sang, and I cannot remember whether she sang next, or whether she sang a bit later. Anyway, it was 8:45, and I thought from the W2S listings that the karaoke started at 8:30 (the venue had told me 8pm when I rang to check).

Two speakers sat in the mouth of the small room, either side of the entrance, and behind them was a cloth covered large box which I presumed held the singer's monitor. On top of the box was an LCD single-line display on which a message constantly scrolled welcoming everyone to this host's karaoke - perhaps slightly offputting for the audience. The sound was quite good - a little too muffled to be actually great, but as good as you would expect for this type of venue. Most importantly, the lady techie wore a path from the stage to the centre of the dance floor in order to reguarly check the sound.

The second singer was not holding the mic to the host's satisfaction, and so the host gave him on-stage instructions about holding it closer. The host then came out to the dance floor to further check the sound, and was of course followed by the singer - so took the opportunity to futher instruct. I realised that the hosts were very keen on great sound, and were working as hard as possible to enhance this - though I can't say that the sound was really good enough to justify this degree of enthusiasm.

I picked a song from the songlist - a songlist, I might comment, that was both clear, clean, and extremely well presented. The W2S details mention . . .(full story on where2sing.com)

Read the rest of this exclusive Karaoke Gig Review, and find whether this karaoke gig is still running on Where2sing.com . . .

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