Fly by Night Club – The Fly Trap 24/08/2012
Written for Drum Media (The Music)
After almost 20 years since the end of The Triffids, between raising a family and becoming an architect, Jill Birt has started a slow but evolving solo career that has led her to the release of her new album Render & Prosper.
In the intimate setting of The Fly Trap, Richard Lane opened up an evening that was all about appreciating great songwriters and Australian talent. Lane’s husky vocals nervously filled the room as he introduced us to the familiar slick, bluesy rockin’ guitar riffs from The Stems days, and a mix of solo acoustic songs about “broken hearts, cars, girls and all that stuff,” including a great cover of Walking The Dog. Whilst not vocally perfect, there is something authentic about his presence and garage attitude that draws you in.
Staging a smooth contrast, Davey Lane got straight into his first real WA tour as a solo artist showing a diverse mix of his new content, which has proved him to be a confident songwriter. Musically, Lane has achieved a lot in his time with You Am I and others, and this was evident in his performance and ability to hook the audience from the first note, weaving you around with intensity and rhythm fluctuations. Despite still being shaky from some 4am tequila shots, Let It Go showcased his pitch-perfect vocals while Transportation gleamed in strength and clarity. Lane also brought out the ukulele for Only One Will Do before taking a humorous, tastier turn with Keep Your Eyes To Yourself For The Night to close his set in style.
With an almost chilling start, the keyboard player and occasional vocalist behind ‘80s rock legends The Triffids, Jill Birt, joined by Alsy Macdonald, and Adrian and Shaun Hoffman, brought the fervent crowd an electric mix of classy pop-star like songs. Birt’s heart-wrenching vocals were quick to consume, embedding goose bumps on arms and transporting us into a haunting yet vibrant world with a Bjork and Sugarcubes feel to it at times.
Despite the power cutting out part way through, or Richard Lane officially stopping the show, whichever way you want to look at it, the drumbeat rolled on and the crowd kept cheering until things quickly went back to normal. Phoenix Highway and Still Life showed the full capacity of Birt’s striking voice. When the Hoffmans left the stage for a song, MacDonald and Birt’s duet revealed a great vocal blend. Not being satisfied with just the one encore, the crowd egged them on for a second and were treated to an unexpected visit from The Triffids’ Rob McComb, joining them on stage to play guitar for Goodbye Little Boy. If tonight was anything to go by, Birt’s new album will no doubt be a success.