It was a still Saturday night and after a sobering football match, whether one watched it or not, music lovers found their way to The Gov. There was something calming in the air, felt especially through the crowd that drew from all walks of life. The lights went down and we watched on in anticipation…
June Jones opened the night, sitting angled against a keyboard. Her style cut through the audience and blending heartbreak and humour, her voice rose above the music. Cracking with emotion, the tracks were long exposures, drawn out analogies of oddly ordinary things. There was a sense of self-aware naivety to the words, as if life would be easier in the worlds she imagined on stage, a sentiment highlighted by the rose-tinted glasses she wore. While the backing tracks lacked musical depth, the lack of dynamics served the consistent delivery of words and melody. Engaging with the crowd, she asked for criticisms, comments and requests - and got them, bringing smiles to our faces with each witty response. Themes of sadness and longing crystalised in the chorus of a Boulder Slowly Falling: “I am empty and I am numb / From my bones to my beak to my bum / And I don't feel like anyone”. Performing in support of her recently released album ‘Diana’, June Jones left us challenged and awake, left to consider the power of words and the identities that bring them to life.
Opening with Superstar, the opening track to their latest and only second release Wild Seeds, Seeker Lover Keeper brought us into their world. Comprising of Sarah Blasko, Sally Seltmann and Holly Throsby, the band brings together not just a talent for writing songs, but their sensibilities, their warmth and their chemistry. The songs were driven by keyboards, but lifted by harmonies as the trio took turns leading songs. Their liveliness filled the room with the real instruments a refreshing change. A technical difficulty instead brought smiles and authenticity washed over the audience as the band laughed about bringing KeepCups and water bottles on stage. Interrupting Holly’s start to a song, Blasko joked that “I’m watching you both as audience member and band member”. This sentiment rang more than true as the band began to traverse their back catalogue. Playing their theme song, and title track to their first album Seeker Lover Keeper, the band took audiences back to 2011. Encompassed by this genuine sense of connection, their songs ranged in topic from finding time for oneself, supporting one another and the challenges of being a woman. “Sick and still singing like a mofo”, as Throsby jokingly put it, Blasko wasn’t in full health, yet powered through until the last encore. Leaving the audience with smiles on their faces, it was the most pleasant night for all who attended.
Image: Cybele Malinowski