The Hi-Fi was awash with cool types sporting all manner of 80’s get ups along with one punter wearing a large, round, white medallion that lit up on touch (more about this later), in anticipation of the return of dance fiends Metronomy, hot on the heels of their Mercury prize-nominated third album English Riveriera.
Oscar + Martin take to the stage soothing the horde’s sonic appetite, sharing vocal and syncopated drumming duties with finesse. Their music is a fine blend of electronica, r’n’b, rap, hip hop with some electronic xylophone thrown in for good measure. Joining the boys on stage is a succession of female vocalists in a glorious haphazard fashion at different parts of their set. An entertaining/ multi-textured set of stripped back soundscapes and vocal harmonies sate the crowd in preparation for English darlings Metronomy.
With the Hi-Fi packed to capacity, Metronomy make their way nonchalantly on stage, with each member of the band positioned virtually in front of banners which sport their own hand painted image, hanging at the back of the stage. Kicking off proceedings with a magnetic rendition of “We Broke Free”, the punters are compelled to dance and at the song’s conclusion erupt with screams of appreciation.
From the outset, bassist Gbenga Adelekan is grooving to the beat and laying down some serious bass lines, whilst keyboardist Oscar Cash is dancing around his keyboard, with front man Joe Mount regaling us with witty and amusing repartee and Anna Prior pounding away at her skins, resplendent in a sequinned top. Each of the band members is wearing an oversized round white medallion similar to the one the punter (alluded to earlier) was wearing. During second number “Love Underlined” each disc lights up in succession to the beat of the music adding to the quirkiness of the show.
Metronomy are enjoying themselves on stage. Their antics and energy is infectious, spilling over into the throng. Joe Mount is quite the acerbic comedian, exclaiming “As far as we’re concerned this is our last show in Australia. To celebrate we’ll play ‘She Wants’ ” not before alluding to the fact that they are playing Busselton in WA the next day. He also confesses that their most embarrassing concert occurred at Meredith where as a result of technical difficulties there was dead air. After this cathartic confession, it is clear there is no dead air tonight, much to Mount’s and the audience’s relief.
Standouts include pop gem “The Look”, “A Thing For Me” with stalker overtones, and “The Bay” all the while the multitude of punters rip it up on the dance floor. After a small hiatus Metronomy return for the encore, ending with “On Dancefloors” and more of Mount’s between song banter before the closer “Radio Ladio”, “This song is for the sheilas in the audience, but the “bogans” (guys in Mount’s interpretation) can enjoy it too”.
Tonight Metronomy set the precedent for what an entertaining gig is all about, and above all did it with class and a good dose of humour.
– Anna Megalogenis