Tim Freedman @ The Gov, Adelaide 1/4/2021

What a start to the long weekend seeing Tim Freedman take Adelaide fans on a journey through The Whitlams back catalogue, some covers and a couple new tunes. It was great to be able to sit and marvel in what was a great couple of hours of music and stories. Opening with some familiar tunes in Beauty In Me and Cries To Hard Freedman commented that his cream linen suit was his take on the news over the last three weeks. Dedicating Beautiful As You to the “beautiful couples” who sit down the front in the couple seats holding hands later drawing a contrast to where the single people sit to philosophically view the show playing Up Against The Wall.

Freedman knows how to tell a story and spoke about how The Whitlams are putting out their first single in fourteen years and with a number of new ones ready to go he questioned whether to play six of them in a row prompting people to go for a toilet break or dispersing them through the set. I Remember is a cracker and a taster of what’s to come off their new album. It would be remiss if he did not play No Aphrodisiac as this was one of many highlights. The story behind the dedication to Michael Gudinski was a good listen about how they played Women In Uniform over the closing credits at the ARIAS and the comment made by Freedman at the end which made it on an official release was gold. New tune Man About A Dog was another new gem introduced to the faithful at The Gov.

Fall For You was another love song for the “gorgeous couples” down the front followed by a trilogy of songs about some famous hapless criminals in Kate Kelly, Nobody Wants To Be You and Witness Protection Scheme. There’s quite a story behind Ballad Of Bertie Kidd which started in Freedman’s local pub with someone mistaken him as Bernard Fanning. After Freedman prompted the crowd to go buy a copy of the limited edition 7″ blue vinyl of that song suggesting it was like buying bit coin.

There were a couple of songs for the “singing Saturday night crowd” (even though it was a Thursday) who were likely to get amorous in a cab by the time they would get to North Terrace. Those sing-a-long moments came by way of Thank You (For Loving Me At My Worst) and Melbourne. Time travelling back to 2004 12 Hours was about a romantic miscalculation battling through a hangover to realise that wasn’t bad enough because John Howard got re-elected. Gough was great with the next two “wiping the smiles off your faces with two sad songs about blokes” with Charlie No. 3 and new tune Sancho (dedicated to their tour manager Greg Weaver who passed).

Some great covers were pulled out of the hat with Joni Mitchell’s Both Sides Now and Neil Young’s Birds also not forgetting Randy Newman’s Living Without You. The Harry Nilsson cover Gotta Get Up (recognisable on Netflix’s Russian Doll) was top notch. With a promise to return this August when hopefully we can stand Freedman finished on Blow Up The Pokies and You Sound Like Louis Burdett.

The crowd weren’t in a hurry to go home wanting more with the first encore featuring Keep The Light On and I Will Not Go Quietly. Still wanting more Freedman returned for one final time to close the night with the crowd favourite I Make Hamburgers. Quite an extensive set list of old, new and some cool covers making for the perfect soundtrack to ease in to the long weekend.

Live Review By Rob Lyon

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