Words Rob Graves.
Photos Kim Anderson – Shoot The Wicked Witch.
First up we had The Caballeros. If I were to describe their sound and stage presence I would tell you to imagine what would happen if The Hives and The Beasts of Bourbon had baby. While they were missing guitarist Stefan Caramia for the night, his replacement Julian Costa fit right in. If this was your first time seeing the band you couldn’t tell he’d only had two rehearsals for the show. They were tight. Opening with Lovesick Casanova and I Got The Blues, vocalist Jake ‘Dr Green’ England sang his way through the crowd and really got them up off their seats. By the time they started playing Keys To The city and Last Chance the Astor lounge started filling up and feeding off the energy that The Caballeros were serving. A personal hightlight was seeing the boys cover American Ruse (MC5) with Benny Mayhem. I dare say their version of the song is better and it was good seeing that guy front a band before he goes back to Europe. Closing with Caballero Twist and Lovesick Reprise there were people left wondering why these guys opened one show and didn’t support the whole Datsuns West Coast tour. These guys have it and Perth are lucky to have them. I even caught Dolf de Borst (The Datuns) having a boogie.
Next up The Volcanics who are supporting The Datsuns West Coast tour. The bar area seemed to have more people supporting overpriced Mexican VB’s than The Volcanics, which is disappointing because they’re a solid rock band. Set highlights included Don’t Take My Word and What You Say. Towards the end of the set vocalist Johnny Phatouros invited a three piece brass section to add some flair to a couple of songs. It seemed a little awkward but came accross really well and sounded great.
The Astor Lounge is now packed and waiting for The Datsuns. They opened with Gods Are Bored and straight away they had the was lounge moving. Just like a trusty 180B you can rely on the Datsuns to still have that punch you fell in love with all those years ago. The set was filled with old favourites and a bunch of new tunes off their latest album Deep Sleep. Caught In The Silver, Bad Taste and Bullseye followed and de Borst had the crowd captivated. Cue Harmonic Generator and the room went nuts.
Guitarist Christian Livingstone was in his element, engaging the fans in the front row while playing. De Borst asked the crowd to have a little sit down during Helping Hands and everybody jumped up and went nuts on que, it was amazing. Looking Glass Eyes and Claw Machine were solid and were an excellent setup for Motherfucker From Hell. An extended version of Freeze Sucker closed out the night, some would say it wasn’t extended enough and would have happily have had The Datsuns play for another hour. The band were very thankful of the fans that came down and it showed, they actually took time to speak to those who stuck around to try and meet them.
The whole show was great, I danced, got crushed and met a band that I have loved for years. I’m pretty sure everybody who attended left feeling the same way.