Celebrating the release of their debut 7 inch ‘Underneath Tonight’, Lowtide performed at the Northcote Social club on the last stop of their East Coast Tour this past Mother’s Day.

First up on the day were Baptism of Uzi, a promising new band who released their own LP last year. Described as a psychedelic band by some, the influence of the genre is certainly apparent. The band actually has a much more polished sound than conventional psychedelic bands, and certainly no young wannabe Roky Eriksons to be spotted on stage either. Perhaps a more subdued gig was played in case anyone brought their mother along, the soft vocals reminiscent of the Jesus and Mary Chain more than anything else (or perhaps the vocals weren’t loud enough in the mix). Three clearly talented guitarists is what cemented the audience’s attention, and they’re certainly gigging a lot around town.

The Zebras made for an ideal mid bill set on a Sunday afternoon. Quite a large group, it was kind of like watching a band play at their local pub in a country town in the same vein as Paul Kelly; in that watching them perform was like coming home after a long journey, with a real warmth and comfort to the sound. It’s unsurprising to learn that this band already has three albums behind them, and the experience can be heard. The Zebras have something very iconic about them and being from Brisbane it’s clear The Go-Betweens have been an influence. A welcome prelude to Lowtide.

Lowtide is the somewhat recent metamorphosis of Three Month Sunset and this recent conception comes off as much more natural. Although the trend of recent music scenes has often been towards a nonchalant and lost sound it is clear Lowtide has emerged from that storm to a much sturdier and clearer composition, a welcome change as well. Though they have kept their signature velvety sound, what is most apparent in the transition is the tightening up of the vocals with lovely shared harmonies, accompanied by the minimalist drums. Indeed the songs really are reminiscent of the tide gently going in and out. There is also a haunting quality to the songs, with ethereal female vocals and textured songs well suited to evoking feelings of wading in water or wandering through a thick fog.

Lowtide are currently in the process of recording an album. Keep a look out for their 7” in stores.

–        Hannah Joyner