What a show! After missing The Wombats at Spin Off festival back in July I was determined to make sure I was there this time. There is definitely a real affinity with these Liverpudlians and Australia and each tour continues to get bigger and bigger. They are a class act, with great tunes, stage presence and an adoring fan base who literally hang off every note. This tour was mostly flavoured with their relatively new album Beautiful People Will Ruin Your Life (which has been re-released with bonus tracks).
Cheetah Tongue got things off to a flying start continuing those energetic vibes with Give Me A Try and 1996. Great to see one of my favourites in Black Flamingo get a run early in their set. Lead vocalist and guitarist Matthew Murphy first words were “you guys look beautiful, it’s our third time playing this one live, third time lucky maybe” then playing a tune that’s tucked away at the back of their album in Ice Cream. Murphy asked the crowd to forget the fact it was Sunday for a brief moment proceeding to play Techno Fan. Emoticons was superb and there was a wry smile to the person who chucked up a lemon on stage when it was announced that Lemon To A Knife Fight was next. Cracking single! The energy of this show was right up there and it was a fun show to be at. I Don’t Know Why I Like You But I Do slowed things down a little only to rev things up again on Your Body Is A Weapon.
Murphy spoke about being a proud owner of two dogs, one of which is a sweetie and the other a real bitch requiring Prozac which served as a Segway in to Bee-Sting which references Prozac in the first line. The projections were really well done and complemented the songs. Pink Lemonade and Moving To New York were great moments in the set and for a band that was still suffering from jet lag you would hardly know it by the way they played. Time flies when you’re having fun and it was hard to believe that the end of the show was nearing with the big guns being dragged out with Jump In To The Fog, Tokyo (Wolves & Vampires) and the song that started it all Let’s Dance To Joy Division to bring the main set to a close.
There was plenty of noise for an encore and there was no way that The Wombats would have been able to leave Adelaide without an encore. Murphy returned to play Lethal Combination solo and acoustic which offered a nice contrast to what we had seen in their set. Turn got the crowd moving and with a promise to see everyone on the “other side” it was Greek Tragedy that left everyone happy. The Wombats might get criticised by some for being here every year but when the fans keep turning why wouldn’t you keep coming back. Fingers crossed for a return next year!
Live Review by Rob Lyon