Kacey Musgraves at the Palais Theatre, Melbourne, 14th of May 2019
When you go interstate for a concert you always wonder if you are doing the right thing as you are paying for accommodation and flights and you hope not to be disappointed. After listening to Kacey Musgraves latest Grammy winning brilliant album Golden Hour countless times a severe case of FOMO gripped me and I booked my trip. To say I was not disappointed was an understatement. Kacey and band walked out on stage to an instrumental version of “Oh What a World” and in silhouette commenced playing one of my favourite songs from the album called Slow Burn.
As the second song Wonder Woman started Kacey moved into the light at the front of the stage and by the third song any thoughts I had about her not sounding as good live as on the album were soon dispelled. She sounded so much better. The Palais in St Kilda is quite an old venue but the acoustics are incredible. Her voice and her band sounded immaculate.
A few more songs in and she played Happy & Sad from Golden Hour and when she dropped the key change I was in musical heaven. Kacey has an incredible knack for connecting with her band and the audience. She would acknowledge the people singing every word and her down to earth relatable stories had the audience entranced. Someone at a recent Sydney concert yelled out for her to do a shoey and she refused but tonight she came prepared by bringing a glass slipper and subsequently drinking tequila from it. A little later she told us about how a fan had tweeted that if she did not play his favourite song he would put a huntsmen spider in her bed. The ever accomodating Kacey then played the request , the brilliant It Is What It Is from her 2013 album, Same Trailer, Different Park. I must remember this tactic for getting someone to play a song I like.
Kacey told us that people told her that one has to suffer to create great art and she was concerned that her creativity would dry up as she had just got married prior to writing her new album and was in a very happy place. Tonight we were treated to every one of the thirteen tracks from the sublime Golden Hour which proved to the world that you could be happy and still write a great album. She also played six songs from her first two albums and some of those tracks got the biggest cheers showing that some people had been waiting a long time to see her first concert in Melbourne.
Just after halfway the band and Kacey moved to the front of the stage and played a more acoustic set. It sounded wonderful. I was quite concerned I would miss the Daft Punk like vocoder on Oh What a World but the version played, although different, was fantastic. Her vibrant smooth voice on Love Is A Wild Thing was striking.
The support act tonight was Afie Jurvanen, known by his stage name Bahamas and he was very good. His great songs and dry wit made for a perfect night. Like Kacey he has three albums and I would definitely see him again. His latest album Earthtones was showcased in his set and I loved his Americana and folk sound. Kacey brought him out on stage later where they did a wonderful version of Weezer’s Island In The Sun.
High Horse was the last song of the night and was the most danceable. I love the clever way the guitar repeats her vocal melody in this song and to me it was no surprise it was one of the most popular songs tonight.
Early on Kacey told us that she wanted us to show her what a good time looked like and she would give us a good time back. As the Daft Punk’s Get Lucky played as we left the theatre I felt she had given us that good time and so much more.
Live Review By Richard De Pizzol