The Basement, Sydney
Frontman from Jet previews his upcoming solo album with his Italian backing band, to an audience of what looked to be predominantly music industry types. Strangely enough it was a pretty good night anyway. We went on a gamble and it was worth it.
Support was Olympia, a solo singer/muso backing herself with pedals and loops, alternating between guitar and keyboards. This was pretty interesting and effective, building up walls of sound and stacked vocal harmonies. I’d listen to that again. Damned if I could remember what the lyrical content was about though, even as the songs finished. I may have been toasted by this point.
Then the main act came on. The songs came across really well. I have little or no knowledge of Jet, let alone this album which hasn’t been released yet, but it was a really good blend of hard rock and a fair chunk of soul. My only quibble was a couple of tracks that were basically wall-to-wall cliches musically and lyrically. But that said, the album will be worth checking out, and hopefully the recording will do the band justice.
The all-Italian backing was 2 drummers, keyboards, guitar, bass, sax and trumpet. Very tight, very professional, great rhythm section, very good lead guitar although he only wigged out once or twice, and the horn section was very tasteful and unobtrusive, even in their Blues Brothers costumes.
I was sitting there thinking “these folks don’t look like the usual Basement Friday night crowd, nor do they look like my guess at Jet fans… more of an industry look to me”…then I bumped into a friend who was there as part of a press-ganged party attached to some of the industry folks which confirmed it. Ok it was a launch previewy type thing…but still not quite the right crowd atmosphere really.
It made me think..
I don’t know how long he’s going to be able to keep a 7-piece backing band on the road, and I don’t know how big this could get to sustain it.
Also the Basement food is still sub-airline quality. Beer’s good though. White Rabbit Dark if you’re buying.