Adelaide’s Jive played host to indigenous artist Thelma Plum and her rhythmic indie sounds over the long weekend with the show comes at the mid-point of her national tour.
Some vacant, apprehensive stares met James Crooks as he began his set and a call out for hand claps 2 minutes into his set was asking a lot. His cover of British India’s I Said I’m Sorry garnered some interest from the indie loving audience, and a promise of a ‘banger’ moved a bunch of bodies onto the d-floor, resulting in a more effective hand clap session. The integration of live percussion into his solo electronic set gave the performance visual appeal, which is often lacking in this type of act, and it certainly prepped the crowd for the headline.
The audience danced pretty hard to the filler playlist, begging the question of whether anyone noticed the transition from live to pre-recorded music. Thelma certainly spoke the correct dialect of LOL-anese between songs and even took a ‘selfie’ at the beck and call of a front row GenYer during the opener Dollar. The mid-set rendition of Around Here and its incumbent f bombs was a crowd pleaser, leaving barely a still body in the house.
Plum’s elegant hand gestures and melodically melancholic vocals strewn over songs of great depth were a reminder of why she is rubbing shoulders with Australian musical icons like Paul Kelly. Backed by a combination of live drums and both live and pre-recorded sampled sounds the performance was a full and accurate representation of Thelma’s catalogue. Although a little apprehensive on stage Plum revealed her true artist in the first of 2 encores, playing Romantic Heart Break on solo electric guitar, demonstrating she can stand alone as an artist with or without the production.