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A Where2sing.com exclusive Karaoke Gig Review

Alexandra Headland Hotel karaoke venue review on www.where2sing.com

REVEW: Sleeping beats karaoke


Alexandra Headlands is really a continuation of the beautiful coastline of Maroochydore about an hour north of Brisbane, and this Wednesday I'm searching for the Alexandra Headlands Hotel. I find it, set back from the sea, and in a line of shops on the slip road, but happily that also means there's great parking right in front of the hotel.

There are a few people sitting outside the bar at the end of the building, but I've already seen the banner advertising karaoke, so I know to go into the Sports Bar.

I always think how incongruous is the word 'sports' with a place in which totally out of condition people sit around and drink, but I suppose it projects a tempting image. Though image is perhaps not what this venue is all about, because it's purely a modern building into which an odd shaped bar has been fitted with a couple of pool tables, a betting section, and a fair number of screens.

Oh, and there's also the stage, a big low section that fills the main window set between the two doors, and on which the karaoke is being done. It's indeed a big area, and very empty, and at odds with the rest of the pub which is a bit short of space due to there being big high tables though only about forty people. At the back of the stage is the big window looking out onto the road, and what would normally be the front of the stage has a high and wide counter at which four people were seated, and on which they rest their drinks.

On the opposite side of the counter is the monitor for the singer which could have been set at a normal height so as to give the singer some chance on interacting with the audience, but instead this monitor is set so high that it becomes another block between the singer and audience. Strange.

Over on the left is the KJ's console - actually more like a long table covered with a black cloth, and a player and amplifier in a box and covered by a sparkly gold cloth. But the hosts themselves looked presentable, one being a tall young man with a sculpted beard in the trendy manner, and slightly mohawkish dark short hair also in a trendy style.. He looked ready for the beach in his knee length shorts and trainers, and probably suited the informal atmosphere. The girl was rather shorter, and dressed conservatively.

The sound was fair, and at a volume where people could continue to converse. The speakers were positioned well, one being to the side of the console, and the other being at the far side of the stage, and kept well back. I could also see a foldback speaker tucked under the front of the console and angled towards the singer.

The singers were very much as you'd expect for a pub of this type, for this was normal pub karaoke without any great equipment or particularly impressive hosting skills, and it all matched the environment. There's something rather nice and unpretentious about pub karaoke, because all the host needs is a small amount of equipment and he's in business. The sound here is fair, perhaps a little quiet on the vocals, but fair given the environment. Indeed, the singers seemed rather timid, no one belting out a tune, but rather singing along to the tune in a less than confident way.

Because of the large tables and the manner of seating, it was rather difficult to find a place in which to sit, or indeed stand, where I was not in the way of someone. I stood for a while leaning against the corner of the bar and just beside a cardboard box involved in some competition, and this shielded me from all the people who were managing to walk into the cardboard box. When I got a second drink, I realised that there was a stool on the other side of the cardboard box, and so I sat at that - which meant that people (no matter that there was plenty of space in front of me) banged into my knees rather than destroy the cardboard box. This is not the kind of place in which people say 'sorry', or even the kind of place where you get much of a reply if you pass a friendly comment; welcoming crowd, this ain't.

This is also not the kind . . .(full story on where2sing.com)

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