Wednesday evening in Perth and it seemed the older more distinguished lovers of music headed out to catch Texan band Midlake.
Opening act Big Scary are a two-piece from Melbourne that create quite lovely, temperamental and heavenly music. Their wonderful thirty-minute set was appropriately punctuated by their new single, Autumn: A driving drum beat; melodic keys and harmonies are always a winner.
Midlake make music in much the same ilk as older American songwriting bands. There are no driving rhythms; no high climaxes and little in ways of sing alongs. What they do do is make quite complicated, melody based and structured tracks that translate so well from record to live it’s a little scary.
With seven musicians on stage the initial sound was a little too much, but as their second track, “Children of The Grounds” bellowed through the room, things were ok. “Young Bride” and “Van Occupanther” from The Trials of Van Occupanther were true highlights. As they continued through their set you could close you’re eyes and be transported to the hills of Vermont, hiking through the mountains.
There was something natural about their show, something organic about musicians being musicians. They is no gimmick with this band and their talent is truly immense so a gimmick is in no way needed.
Fan favorite “Roscoe” was perfectly introduced by a truly amazing instrumental piece. They finished their set with the sentimental “Head Home” before popping back on for a few tracks, finishing it all up with Branches.
Midlake are a band of the highest order,seeing them live I have now ticked it off the Musical To-do list.
©Chris Wheeldon. 9/8/10
©Photos Gemma Pike. 2010