Few Australian bands get to the point where they’re popular enough to have a headline tour that graces stages as large Melbourne’s Festival Hall and Adelaide’s Thebarton theatre, but with The Jezabels recently winning the Australian music prize and the J Award for ‘Best Album’ for their debut LP, Prisoner; big venues seem more and more fitting for the indie rock quartet.
The night started out with Snakadaktal, one of the smaller success stories of 2011. As they happily jumped around without missing a beat, it seemed the dream-pop quintet has come out of their shell since their newfound, Triple J influenced fame threw them at interstate shows. Snakadaktal’s unique style of My Bloody Valentine meets Fun. entertained the early attenders, and there’s no doubt their high quality performance would have won over a few new fans.
Young synth-pop diva Lights was next to perform, who got a surprisingly huge welcoming cheer from the stage. Despite being so tiny, she has a voice that rivals the power of an opera singer. Her sweet vocal lines battled with bass-heavy dubstep movements, the latter of which caused a bit of a stir in the crowd. It was fantastic to see that Lights was having just as much fun on stage as the crowd were, and by the sound of how much she was enjoying yourself, it wouldn’t be surprising for her to head back to Australia in a short while.
The now hefty, energy filled crowd were ripe with anticipation for the headline act. With three stunning garden frame like objects beautifying the stage and a light show ready and raring to impress, three quarters of the indie rockers walked on stage and started to play an instrumental song. This moved right into singer Hayley Mary running out and the quartet starting to play “Endless Summer”, the lead single from their debut album.
The Jezabels were there not just to perform, but to blow everyone’s mind as well – something they unquestionably accomplished. Though only three instruments strong, they produced a hell of a lot of sound. Nik Kaloper’s drumming was pristine and awe-inspiring, guitarist Sam Lockwood proved to be the master of guitar pedalling, and keyboardist Heather Shannon consistently played two different instruments at the same time with ease.
Playing nearly their entire discography in their extensive 80 minute set in front of an array of fitting clips of nature, the Jezabels hosted a show that Adelaide was proud to be a part of. Whether crowd members were there for a particular opener or the main act, the excellence of all performing bands would have surely been enough for the vast majority to enjoy the entire night.
– Tom Gaffney