City Calm Down, Woodes, Workhorse @ The Gov, Adelaide 9/6/2018

Tonight at the Governor Hindmarsh which is celebrating its twenty-fifth year we had three very different but excellent acts.

First up was the wonderful Workhorse from Adelaide playing most of the tunes from their 2017 EP called No Sun. They are a jangly dream pop band who I have seen a couple of times and they never disappoint. A highlight was a song called Alone which reminded me of an early Devo song called Gut Feeling. If you get a chance to see them please do as they are very good and we should be supporting our local acts

Second up was Woodes from Melbourne who has been to Adelaide a couple of times but this was the first time with her full band. Woodes plays electronica with alternative influences. Woodes is the moniker of Ellie Graham and she played songs from her first self titled EP and her current EP called Golden Hour. Woodes came out on stage with an incredible costume. She was wearing a black gothic dress with a silver cape and a black spiky cap. After the second song Rise she said “Hi my name is Woodes and I wear stupid things on stage”.

I thought she looked fantastic and with her infectious smile she really looked like she was enjoying herself on stage. She played a cover of Vance Joy’s Lay It On Me as well as a new song called Change My Mind. The highlight of the set for me was Dots which I have had on high rotation for many months. To me it reminds me of London Grammar crossed with Regina Spector. Woodes promised us she would be back to Adelaide later in the year and I look forward to seeing her again when she returns.

Lastly we had the incredible City Calm Down who were last in Adelaide for the Laneway Festival earlier in the year. The appreciative crowd was at near capacity at the Gov which is excellent considering the Cabaret Festival was in full swing and Jet were tearing it up at Thebby. City Calm Down started in lead singer, Jack Bourke’s bedroom in 2008 with Sam Mullaly on keys, Jeremy Sonnenburg on bass and Michael Quirk on drums and have slowly been building up their fan base in Australia.

They opened their set with Distraction/ Losing Sleep from their magnificent second album, Echoes In Blue released in April this year. For ninety minutes they treated us to songs from that album and their first album In a Restless House released in 2015 as well as Pleasure and Consequences from their 2012 EP.

Tonight CCD sounded like a modern atmospheric synth rock band. They are a very tight band who remind me of Interpol and New Order at times. Jack is an excellent lead singer who sings with a controlled deep voiced intensity that is a cross between Phil Oakey from Human League and Dave from Gang of Youths.

The highlights were Blood which sounded better live as well as Son and Falling from the first album. Jack has been juggling his band duties with that of being a lawyer. Based on the fantastic performance I saw tonight I would like to think that he would be able to cut back completely on the lawyer duties for a while and concentrate on this outstanding band

City Calm Down is a band I have just started listening to and I think both albums are as equally as good. This was the first time I had seen them live and for me they have gone from a band I had hardly heard of to an unmissable band. I look forward to more listens of their two albums and seeing them again.

Live Review By Richard De Pizzol

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