Reviewed by Meghan Player
The year is 1965; and Australian audiences are in the grips of Easyfever – thanks to one Sydney band, The Easybeats.
One year later, their legacy track “Friday On My Mind” enters the charts and the fever that Australian audiences were captivated by, goes global. The world is their oyster.
After touring jaunts in Europe and America, the band return home three years later their final show in country NSW.
Just like a fever, the career of The Easybeats was brief, intense; but left a long-lasting impression on the Australian music scene and what would follow in the years to come.
Flash-forward to December 2017; the music scene has shifted and changed throughout the last nearly 50 years, but there’s two things that never seem to die – rock music and nostalgia.
If you’re going to throw together a tour to celebrate the songs of a band that has reached legendary rock status (this includes an induction into the ARIA Rock and Roll Hall of Fame), you’re going to want some seasoned musicians at the helm – and the Easy Fever tour certainly delivered.
Comprising rock royalty Chris Cheney (The Living End), Phil Jamieson (Grinspoon), Tim Rogers (You Am I), Kram (Spiderbait) and Tex Perkins – the best of the best take to the Enmore Theatre tonight to proclaim that rock and roll never really died.
Taking turns to cover tracks that spanned the bands five-year career, you can feel the music come alive again, re-interpreted in a modern-setting, without ever losing the core, ethos of the band.
Jamieson and Rogers shift and shimmy their way through the set; harking back to an era that has long been referred to as the “swinging 60s”. Perkins swaggers and croons like a modern-day Jim Morrison, whilst Kram provides a guttural rock voice that makes the near 50 year-old tracks take on new life. Cheney does, quite simply, what he does best – effortlessly ploughing his way through each track on his white Gretsch.
The weaving of narrative and history throughout the set, sees the performance become more of an “experience” than an ordinary live show – offering a chance for the younger generation to perhaps learn something new, and for the older generation, a chance to reflect. At one point I hear an older gentleman explain where he was when he first heard a particular song.
Perhaps, that is also what is noticeable about tonight’s audience – the varying generations in attendance; and the different reasons they found themselves here tonight. Ultimately, a testament to the weight, influence and longevity of The Easybeats’ songs.
And really, that’s what music should be about. Making a mark that will continue to influence and inspire, long after the music may be over.
Enmore Theatre, Sydney
15th December 2017
Photos by Meghan Player