When you get the word that not one, but three iconic names in Aussie rock are in town playing together you typically take notice. Hard edged rocker Kim Salmon, Alternative legends Died Pretty, and the masters of Seminal Punk Radio Birdman put on a tight show on Sunday that was about as good as it gets. There are some mindsets that suggest older bands that continue to tour are a mere parody of themselves and, while in some cases this may be true, it certainly isn’t for any of these great acts. Having seen quite a few of the former, this lineup wrote their own chapters in the annals of Australian Music, and still have ‘pen to paper’, so to speak.
Kim Salmon (The Scientists, Beasts of Bourbon) cranked out a solo set that showcased his uniqueness as a stand alone act. The eclectic mix of guitar sounds and vocals were well received by the jam packed house at The Gov.
Died Pretty were brilliant under the lead of Ron Peno, the charismatic frontman and founding member. Their string of recognisable 80s/90s anthems reminded us of how great an influence they had on Australian Indie music in their heyday. Their songs ‘Sweetheart, D.C, Good At Love, & Harness Up‘ still resonate for all the right reasons. That generation knew how to write music, tell a story, and to play some goddamn great music! For those of us who were lucky enough to have heard these songs the first time around, they still evoke fantastic memories of the free spirited 80s/90s.
Capping off an already stellar evening of great Australian music, the Godfathers of protopunk Radio Birdman launched a barrage of sound and energy that was unstoppable. Having seen them play a number of times, they just keep getting harder and tighter each time. Rob Younger still has the capacity to growl out a song and make it hit you in the face, whilst the twin guitar attack from Deniz Tek and Dave Kettley delivers the knockout blow. It’s an undescribable wall of noise that penetrates you to the core, and when you add Nik Rieth’s machinegun drumming, Jim Dickson’s thumping Bass, and Pip Hoyle’s intricate keyboard, you get a synchronised anarchy of sounds that magnificently blend to give that distinctive Birdman sound!
I’m sure for all three acts though, no review can do them justice until you see them for yourselves. All three have nothing to prove, and bear success at being able to still pull a crowd after years of paving the way for others. To put all three together in a single lineup is pure genius. Yeah Hup!