The Pyrophone Juggernaut

We were sitting in the hostel thinking of things to do and happened upon something listed on the boards there. Ignite at the Docklands. It sounded interesting. I wasn't sure if it was just a bit of fire and light and then it would be over but I had nothing else to do so I wandered down to check it out.The Docklands are in an area called Waterfront City. I think Melbourne is trying to sell the place as being outside of Melbourne and you'd live there and "commute" into the city but it's very much right in the city. You can get there by bus, tram or in our case just walking from North Melbourne.Arriving at the Docklands we saw a clear fabric and metal structure that kind of looked like a bunch of little tents that had some coloured lights reflecting off them and moving and glowing in different colours. They were neat but definitely not what I'd call a show. With our fingers crossed we headed further down the dock.It's a pretty place. Out one side is the bridge and harbour and the rest of the city lit up and on the other are a bunch of huge apartment buildings that all look brand new. They definitely have a ship/yacht look to them which made the Docklands name even more appropriate.In no time we found a curious looking vehicle that was similar in size to a small car but was only 4 wheels powered by people sitting up on the back with pedals. It had 2 bars on top that cross like helicopter rotors. Out the ends were nozzles of some sort facing outwards. Where the drivers seat should be sat a guy on a drum and an assortment of instruments around him.The started playing soon after we found them and it was awesome. A lot of the sound game from small organ-like instruments after hitting the ends with paddles that looked like they once hit ping-pong balls. The other side had a large xylophone-like instrument and a few other things. They played for a few minutes and then rolled down to the other end of the dock.Feeling the pangs of hunger we found the first place that served something like food and it turned out to be a really good fish and chips place. I had some dim sims( I still don't know exactly what they are), potato patties, some fish and fries. It was too much food but I packed it back anyways. I had already paid for it all.After packing ourselves full we rolled down to the main show. This was a lot better. It looked like a pirate ship.  A pretty big one at that. With wheel rims on one end and huge organs that looked like sails shooting out the top. Long tubes of decreasing length came down the front towards the crowds as well as some hanging tubes in front of the ship to the left.The show was impressive to say the least. They start off slow and easy tapping the hanging tubes and they ring with a metallic sound, they raise them up and down to raise or lower the pitch while they're ringing. There would be a couple people doing this with the others were on the ship with blow torches stuffed into the some of the long organ tubes. They would be make a smooth, deep hum when the torches were inside.Either end of the ship had some sort of percussion instruments. One looked like a set of tire rims that rang beautifully when they were struck with a mallet and the other end looked like barrels of some sort giving off an equally nice but different sound.The beat of the music would get faster and faster with all the different instruments. At any time during the show there would be 1,2, or 3 people on the long tubes on the front hitting the top with paddles making  neat airy noise out the other end. It would be higher or lower pitch depending on the length of the tube they hit.The ones manning the fire organs had short torches that would make a different noise than if they put their long torches into the tubes. The longer torches put out a much bigger flame and would come out the top of the organ when they put it all the way in. They'd bring them out, wave the torches around in front and behind the organs creating a really cool effect and then throw it back in shooting flames out the top.Finally after they were all all going as fast as they could on their instruments and one guy would run over to the main mast and haul on a cord that shot a massive fireball out the top and end the show. We were there for 2 parts of the show and the first time we could feel the fireball from the middle of the crowd. The second time I wanted to be as close as possible and it was amazing. There was very warm shockwave that hit you as the fireball blew up in the sky. It was the most exciting thing I've seen so far on the trip![gmap]