LIVE REVIEW: Getting starry-eyed with Allday and friends
Northbridge was well and truly alive on a Saturday night — but tucked away in Metro City was a night to behold.
With Allday’s headline tour kicking off in Perth, it eventuated into a strong reminder of Australia’s shining live talents. JXN, E^ST and Mallrat were lined up as supporting acts, but each stood out in their own right and shared many special firsts with the audience.
Kicking things off was JXN, part-time Youtube personality and part-time singer, who in fact played his first live show ever. First soothing the crowd with his soft vocals, JXN then unleashed his latest and more upbeat single, ‘Going Off’ featuring A$AP Twelvyy.
Next up was E^ST, who took the energy of Metro City to the next level. Every time I’ve witnessed E^ST perform, she’s always been in her element — and this night was no different. Excitingly, she brought onto stage a couple of Area 51 escapees (below), of which were the perfect addition for her performance of ‘Alien’ followed by ‘Heaven in My Mind’ and her hit single ‘I Don’t Lack Imagination’. Up there, it was evident the young singer was at ease and loving every second of it.
Then came the momentous chanting. “For those who don’t know me, I’ve got something for you all to sing along to,” said E^ST, who completely turned a cover of ‘Give You Hell’ into her own.
Everyone joined in on the occasion, and was thereafter treated to a live preview of her upcoming bass-filled track ’Talk Deep’ — due to be released in a couple weeks. Finishing off her set with ‘Friends’, it was a heartfelt moment as she spread the positive message of gratitude and urged the crowd to embrace their friends surrounding them.
Things were just getting started as Mallrat’s live DJ, Denim, got everyone immensely pumped before her emergence. Clad in the coolest of stage ensembles — a white fly print two-piece (pictured below) — she exhibited a far more lackadaisical presence. Tracks ‘Tokyo Drift’, ‘Sunglasses’ and ‘For Real’ were no doubt received well, despite her mellow energy.
Fuelled by her disdain for the nightclub strip of Fortitude Valley, ‘Bunny Island’ was sung beautifully with several Japanese verses. By then, she’d let her hair down and even performed a fun little side-step dance number with Denim. After asking everyone to preorder her upcoming EP, Mallrat concluded her set with her newer songs, ’Nobody’s Home’ plus a stripped back version of ’Charlie’ — an emotional tribute to the loved ones in her life (including her beloved golden retriever).
Right on schedule, Allday showed up with a stunningly suited-up band and old school Nokia phone visuals. Perhaps one of the best surprises of the beautiful set-up was having Japanese Wallpaper join in with his signature dreamy synths — particularly for 2017 track ’In Motion’. True to the theme of Allday’s latest album, Starry Night Over the Phone, the stage set-up switched over to starry visuals upon the beginning of ’Right Now’.
Yet another wonderful surprise was having triple j favourites ‘Wonder Drug’ and ‘Protection’ played earlier in his set — which left ample room for Allday’s older material, including the harder rap verses of ‘Sides’. The crowd knew almost every line of ‘Lungs’ and ‘What Do You Think?’, showing they had lapped up Starry Night Over the Phone.
As much as the audience was a stickler for his more concentrated rap, there was a whole lot of love for his slower album standouts ‘Don’t Want To Push You Away Anymore’ and ‘Restless’. Eyes were closed and hands were outreached. Mallrat came hopping back out for ‘UFO’, and after a smashing performance and massive hug, a huge round of applause was only necessary for the pair.
There needed to be an encore, of course, with fans begging for ‘one more song’. Allday and friends, though, treated us to not only one, but two throwback tracks. Following an acoustic rendition of ‘Girl In The Sun’, ‘You Always Know The DJ’ was the only logical song to end the magical evening with.
It’d been a long while since I’ve experienced a gig quite as absorbing as this one. For those thinking of heading along to any of Allday’s live shows on his Starry Night Over the Phone tour — you’ve got nothing to lose except your inhibitions, as you sway in time with the fine-tuned music.