Almanac Music: The Paper Kites at the Forum

The Paper Kites at the Forum, Saturday 23 March 2019.


by Mick Symons


Old Father Time is a bastard. I confirm my assessment as I walk slowly from the tram stop to avoid further aggravating my age-related damaged Achilles tendon injured while playing cricket. Those 50 plus men trying to recapture previous Glory Days!


But soon with a Moon Dog in my hand, fifteen metres from the stage on the Forum dance floor and the sweet melodic sounds of the Paper Kites in the air, spirits rise.


I marvel at the mix of the audience – parents with teenage children, groups of female friends, male friends, couples, and more of my age group booking out the luxurious booths for prime comfortable viewing.


I hear lead singer, Sam Bentley, acknowledge their two main groups of fans, “The Lovers” and “The Sad Singles”, and for the next song the lights go out so no one can see their tears.


Layers of intricate sound fill the fabulous venue as the talented guitarists work their fingers up and down the fretboards.


I stand in among the attentive crowd as we soak up the soothing mood and I wonder why I like this music. It’s not dancy. There’s no mosh. No jangling guitars. But I feel myself slowing down and growing more contemplative with the pace of the music. They are in no rush, singing of battling life’s many tricky moments as we all do.


They sing of lost love from a selfless near monastic existence in “Paint” – “I only eat to fill me up, I only sleep to rest”. More “sounds of fleeting hearts” in “Featherstone” reinforce the sad singles’ devotion to the Paper Kites.


“The Lovers” strike back when they “let it all slow down” in “Kiss the grass”. Roars of recognition follow when naturally they lovingly ask each other, “Can I be close to you?” in crowd favourite, “Bloom”. Carefree adolescent days are recalled as we whistle our way through the rest of the song.


I catch one last glimpse of the starry blue sky roof of the Forum and think that maybe just for a little while yet, time might be on my side.



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About Michael Symons

Followed Essendon down family lines since the days of Coleman. Music lover with a theory that most conversations have already been previously captured in song lyrics.


  1. Nice stuff, Mick.
    Having seen many bands there, I reckon The Forum is a great venue in which to see a band.

  2. Very enjoyable Mike. Thanks for introducing me to The Paper Kites

  3. Never heard of them. If its all the same to you, I’ll stick to ABBA, QUEEN, RACEY, CREDENCE, MANFRED MANN and THE BEATLES – SUPERB BANDS..

  4. Mick Symons says

    Cheers Vin. I can recommend their album “Twelvefour” from a few years ago. All songs were written between midnight and four am.

    And Fisho, if you dare, you could try a twenty-first century option – check out another Melbourne band, City Calm Down – – a bit heavier then TPK.

  5. Sorry Mick, most “music” of these days leaves me cold -ESPECIALLY RAP CRAP.

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