Friday, June 20, 2014
Fresh from their victory a few days ago at the Perth heat of the Battle Of The Bands competition, The Georgians stepped in at short notice, after a member of original opening act, Arkayan, unfortunately fell ill. But their loss was our gain, as the band took to the stage with all the bounce and enthusiasm of a litter of hyperactive Labrador puppies, and didn’t let up for the whole 30 minutes. For a band relatively new to the circuit, they looked completely at home on stage, and it was easy to see why they have made it to the battle of the bands final in Sydney. I predicted that we will be seeing a lot more of these boys.
This Other Eden were next up. The band both look and sound dangerous, with heavy, powerful riffs interwoven with melodic. They raged through a strong repertoire of songs, driven by the relentless rhythm section and thrashing guitars, while vocalist John Kelly has the perfect voice to carry off the variety of styles required to complete this quintet.
Opia play a brand of progressive alt rock which is slightly more serious and a little less, well, bouncy, than others performing here tonight. I’ve listened to these guys on CD, and really enjoyed their intricate music and progressive arrangements. However, I did feel that at times, this finesse was lost in the mix, especially at the beginning of the set. The vocals were often drowned by the guitar, and in turn the guitar was overly distorted, or too up in the mix. It was a shame, as Opia’s set was full of strong, well thought out songs that never fail to impress on record. For a threesome, they certainly produce an intense and complex musical experience. I do look forward to seeing them live again in the future.
Here to celebrate the release of their We Are The Fire, We Are The Earth EP, The Meaning Of began, or rather didn’t begin, with a technical hitch for their bass player. After 15 minutes or so of frustration, changed leads and borrowed basses, the show finally got underway and was worth the wait. These 18 year veterans know how to put on a good show with deceptive ease. Synchronous stage movement messes together with the heavy stuttering guitar and bass riffs almost hypnotically. Vocalist/percussionist Mike Sukys is a charismatic front man, enjoying banter and asides with the enthusiastically dancing crowd The Meaning Of are borderline undefinable without using a dictionary full of adjectives. With a bongo-playing vocalist, a didgeridoo player and the superb use of childish, chanted backing tape interludes to occasionally mix things up, they are in a class of their own. Their professionalism and years of developed stage craft are clearly evident. Sadly it has been announced the band will be parting ways after 18 years andthe upcoming album is to be their last. My advice would be to get along to see these guys before it’s too late. Real Australian rock at its best.