Review & Photography by Lindsay Smith for MPM
When the announcement was made back at the beginning of the year of Austrailian, Ian Moss’s first ever UK band tour, I simply couldn’t resist.
Cold Chisel were one of my favourite bands way back when and so tonight I was looking forward to hearing solo material and Cold Chisel classics and I was not to be disappointed.
Opening was Glaswegian Ewan MacFarlane, a new name to me but after doing a bit of research, he is certainly not a new artiste.
Former frontman with Indie rock band, The Grim Northern Social and Apollo 440, he has a confident air as he begins his set. Acoustic sets never really float my boat, but the expressiveness and catchiness of songs mingled with entertaining narration behind the songs and a personable engaging talent sees the 30 minute set fly bye.
I can’t say the Rescue Rooms were packed, a disappointing half-filled venue to see such a talent was not great for a Friday night but I can honestly say that those there were definitely fans of Mr Moss. The atmosphere was positive and the energy contagious as the cheers went up and the band and Ian Moss made their way onto the stage.
As the music strikes up, the vibes that have followed Moss from Cold Chisel to his own solo work flow freely, a fusion of rock, blues, soul, country and bloody good song writing. Opening with a couple from his debut album ‘Matchbook’, ‘Such A Beautiful Thing’ and ‘Out of the Fire’, the smile hit my face and didn’t leave.
The guitar riffs, the cohesiveness of the band together with story telling songs are an absolute delight. ‘If Another Day (Love Rewards Its Own)’ from his self-titled 2018 album delves into ballad mode before rushing on into ear worming riffs, a touch of soul and a catchy chorus.
Heading down to blues-country rock with a laid-back vibe is Cold Chisel’s ‘One Long Day’. The keys from Clayton Doley filling out the melodies and Ian’s vocal ebbing along. Such a good song with a stunning solo from Mr Moss demonstrating his versatility and dexterity with the guitar.
Back to the toe tapping rock with another Cold Chisel oldie but goodie, ‘My Baby’ which has everyone singing along with singer Juanita Tippins and bassist Zoe Hauptman laying down the vocal layers underpinning Ian’s own.
Bringing things back up to the present with ‘Nullarbor Plain’ from the soon to be released album ‘Rivers Run Dry’.
The setlist takes us back and forth from Ian’s extensive career and every song sounds so good live from Cold Chisels ‘Hold On’ and Choir Girl’ and the very popular ‘Telephone Booth’ and the enthralling story telling of ‘Truckers Daughter’. Everyone is singing along. So good to see such a mix of ages too.
Time goes so fast when the songs keep on flowing and Ian chats to the crowd like old friends, meeting and sharing a beer, engaging and enigmatic and introducing his band including Kerry Jacobson on drums. I knew he was there somewhere as the tub thumping was great but he was buried at the back of the stage in total darkness. Such a laid back but spot on performance from all involved.
As the band left the stage, the lights stayed low and no one moved waiting for an encore.
Lucky for us then that we got one – the final 3 songs.
‘Mr Rain’ flooding our souls with funk and soul; a beautiful rendition of ‘Georgia On My Mind’ demonstrating Juanita’s soulful tones beautifully before the rapturous applause and whistles came for Cold Chisels “Bow River’. Ian’s voice is so strong and expressive, the riffs are flawless and the music is just magical. A flurry of energy and all that was good about Cold Chisel smashing through the decades sounding fresh and soulful, delivered by a top notch band of musicians.
A brilliant night from the off and one that had me reaching for my ‘Chisel’ playlist to drive home too. I can’t wait to hear the new album released next month.
Please don’t leave it so long to come back over from Aus next time. Fabulous night!