The Fearless Vampire Killers ‘Batmania’ Launch at the East Brunswick club started out, as seems to be an ongoing trend for CD launches of late, with Eltham boys The Thod, although this time with their entire 8 piece line-up. For this performance we see the lads sporting hand towels in lure of ponchos, a la Messengers launch at Cherry bar, however why they suddenly have a desire to model a different style gimmick each time they perform is rather perplexing. Especially since anyone who’s heard the group would agree that their music does not require cheap thrills to draw in fans. Image aside the group delivered a sound performance.

Front man Jayden Kenny once again proved why he takes front and centre stage delivering beautiful lead and backing vocals and whilst it is great to see all members back on stage (the return of Alistair Matcott and Daniel McDonald) it is unfortunate that this means we heard far less vocally from the talented Adian McDonald (who performed Dan’s vocals whilst he was overseas).

Guitarist Alistair Matcott’s hyperactive antics, whilst certainly amusing, were somewhat distracting from the rest of the band, with the other member being forced to one side of the stage while Matcott, for want of a less crass description, lost his shit. The highlight of the set, for this reviewer at least, was ‘Sammy Don’t’, with hauntingly exquisite vocals by guitarist James Pasinis. With so many talented vocals coming to light while the band was 2 members down, perhaps now they are 8 again a revised vocal line-up is in order.

Next to take the stage were Melbourne darlings The Messengers. This group is always a delight to see live, partly due to their solid sound and also with their performance consistency. The Messengers are so tight, having performed together for 2 years and counting, they balance each other flawlessly, delivering harmonious unison. These boys shine as a whole.

The Messengers savvy is is at an all time high having mastered and concord all all their current tunes, it will be interesting to hear (hopefully sooner rather then later) what they come up with next. The boys rocked out a stellar set list of their good-time party tunes, with trumpet player Liam McGorry, of Eagle and the Worm and Saskwatch fame making a special guest appearance, which was indeed an excellent addition to the popular song ‘Whisky and Rye’. When The Messengers perform you are almost always guaranteed to have a good night (and a good dance).

Love Migrate (unfortunately more like Love Migraine on the night), was lucky enough to get the main support spot for the evening, however they could not have looked less impressed to be performing if they tried. The band, who has receive triple j play recently with their song ‘Little Kid’ were set to be the surprise ticket for the night, with most punters curious to see what they had to offer. Unfortunately what they had to offer was a) an immature ungrateful attitude (some may call it ‘indifference’), b) a poorly constructed set list (who’s plays their only hit at the VERY start?) and c) the incredible ability to empty the room, with most punters signing in disappointment and going outside for some fresh air. Love Migrate is a talented new act, and their recordings display this to the T, it was indeed unlucky that they delivered a lacklustre performance at this particular show; perhaps it just wasn’t their night?

After the some what mellow side-step to Love Migrate, the space began to buzz once again in anticipation for the boys of the hour. The red lights set the mood as The Fearless Vampire Killers rocked the stage putting their all into the performance with a slew of guest appearances including (once again) the talented Liam McGorry, The Thod’s Alastair Matcott (crazy tambourine guy for those other reviewers who were wondering) and violist Yana Byron.

Attention needs to be drawn to the incredibly talented (and yes incredibly young looking) drummer Justin Olson. The solo performed by Olson at the end of ‘Country Rock’ was truly outstanding and left much of the crowd gobsmacked, clearly not expecting such a display to come out of package. Never judge a book by its cover kiddies.

The Fearless Vampire Killers are fast becoming a new talent force to be reckoned with in the Australian music industry with many new and exciting events coming up.

– Ilsa Melchiori

The Fearless Vampire Killers support Bluejuice at The Prince of Wales Bandroom next Friday the 9th of December.