The Sunnyboys, Even @ The Gov, Adelaide 25/1/2023
It is hard to believe that this would be the last dance for The Sunnyboys in South Australia and what a fitting way to say farewell and thank you to fans than playing a sold out a show at the home of live music The Gov. The band can be quoted as saying “No animosity, no musical differences, just the satisfaction of a job well done and knowing that it’s time”. No doubt they can put the feet up after this tour and look back proudly at what they had achieved given the ups, downs and in betweens.
Opening the show was Melbourne’s Even, in short these guys were brilliant and another case study of a band deserving of far more attention. One thing for sure is that Even set the bar very high so anyone else coming on after really does need to bring their A-game. This was the band’s fourth appearance in Adelaide in the last twelve months and each show has plenty of highlights. Opening with Stop and Go Man was followed a ‘boggie’ in Black Umbrella, their only song to chart in the ARIA top 100. Fast forward to 2021 and in the key of “G”, the peoples key was Six Monkeys followed by a ‘fast song geared for the mid twenties” with Be Still. Shining Star was glorious but the real highlight was Rock and Roll Saved My Life which morphed in to Almost Cut My Hair which was a might fine tribute to Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.
It was great seeing bassist Wally Kempton sing Fleetwood Mac’s Don’t Stop. Ash Naylor reflected briefly playing across the road at the Entertainment Centre last year with The Hoodoo Gurus and The Dandy Warhols and a conversation with Courtney Taylor Taylor who loved The Gurus song What’s My Scene which was a clever prompt to play Dandy Stomp. Don’t Wait complete with indie tunings was the first time played this way with Anton Ruddick (Swedish Magazines). The last song of their set was a tribute to Renee Geyer who passed away earlier this year. Ash mentioned that Renee sang in Bowie In My Dreams and her only payment was joining them in the foyer for pizza. Let’s hope there’s plenty more Even in 2023.
The Sunnyboys! What a performance and what a way to say farewell and thank you to Adelaide. Guitarist Richard Burgman was the leader of sorts on stage spruiking to the crowd “we’ve got a hell of a show for you!” What I really loved about their set was they gave everything and left nothing on the table. All the songs you would expect to hear were there to enjoy one last time. Opening with Love to Rule they took their fans down memory lane for the next ninety minutes. Singer and guitarist Jeremy Oxley was focused and played The Sunnyboys back catalogue with gusto. With the occasional thank you there really wasn’t a need for chit chat or banter letting all their wonderful songs do all the talking.
My Only Friend, Trouble Brain, Tunnel of My Love and Catch My Heart were stellar and a great way to remember this awesome and much revered band. Great to see a lot of younger fans in the crowd witnessing history and being able to say that I to experienced and saw The Sunnyboys final show in Adelaide. What You Need and Lovers (on Another Planet’s Hell) were great but you could the intensity in the room pick up on one of their big hit singles Happy Man. Burgman said after there’s plenty more where that came from. The Stooge and New Kicks were highlights finishing their main set Tomorrow Will Be Fine, Let You Go, Show Me Some Discipline and I’m Shakin’.
Returning for the first encore featured some absolute belters with Ain’t That A Shame, You Need A Friend and their monster chart hit Alone With You which was epic. The crowd cheered and yelled out for one more and The Sunnyboys returned one last time playing The Seeker. Hard to believe that was it! No tears, plenty of smiles and acknowledgement of a job well done. Fantastic show and if you’re contemplating about whether to go, do it! Cheers to good health and a happy retirement to The Sunnyboys.
Live Review By Rob Lyon