Timothy Nelson & The Infidels

Timothy Nelson & The Infidels – Photo by Rachael Barrett

Colab/The Avenues/Institut Polaire

Rosemount Hotel

Friday, August 1, 2014

This launch had already sold out well before the doors opened, so it’s not surprising there was an air of expectancy and excitement, as Timothy Nelson & The Infidels finally launched the Terror Terror, Hide It Hide It album, in a presentation most befitting of something that was two years in the making.

It was bustling early on, even as Colab hit the stage not long after 8pm. A collaboration of local musicians who vary instruments, vocalists (Timothy Nelson performed a song, in effect supporting himself) and showcase freestyle lyrics with a three-piece horn section over the top, this was a larger, more general event for one their performances and it looks as though we’ll all be seeing more of them in future.

The Avenues reformed especially for this show, with a line-up of Cain Turnston and Andy Lawson sharing vocals/guitar with rhythm section Tom Power Craig and Nic Jonsson. There were some nerves running through their camp early in the evening, somewhat needlessly as it turned out, because the 40 minutes The Avenues spent on stage was nothing less than quality time. Pop smarts, riff-ready, heartstring-tugging tunes were always the band’s forte and they summoned what they were renowned for quite assuredly. More of that then, thanks.

Institut Polaire left Perth and ended in Melbourne quite some years ago now. Samantha ‘Sammy Strawbags’ Wass pointed out at one stage that since the last time the band had played at the Rosemount there’d been ‘five babies and a marriage’. Like the reformed Avenues before them, Institut Polaire recalled that which made them so mesmerising back in the day, serious while catchy all at once. Having flown in from Melbourne, vocalist/guitarist, Erik Hecht, was in fine voice, having come out of a self-imposed musical retirement almost as soon as he went into it. The musical reunion was only a part of it, as the band clearly enjoyed being up there as friends once again. Hot single, City Walls And Empires, came at the end of the set and again the years and the clouds just rolled away.

Then, the man of the moment. Or the band of the moment, as while his name adorns the frontage, there is a very real, collective sense about Timothy Nelson & The Infidels. The new album was celebrated in its entirety, with Solider storming off the blocks as a cracking opener, and songs such as Rush, the ever-popular single, Mary Lou and the T-Rex-meets-George-Harrison gift that is Cocoa Jackson keeping an entranced crowd bloody happy indeed. Nelson commanded the stage amongst his impressive Infidel mob, like an Afro-Messiah, ending the evening with Born In The ‘90s, an orphan left off the new album,  but a song that gets ‘em singing in the aisles.

Australia, your Afro is ready.