Reviewed on Sunday March 19
Sydney jangle-pop merchants Body Type are not exactly the loudest or most raucous band on the scene. Still, juxtaposed with tonight’s headliner it’s essentially an equal level of disparity as a two-act bill comprised of Nick Drake and… well, Drake. But hey, more life to Body Type – after all, they’re quickly becoming one of the most exciting bands to watch in the city. Although taking to the stage shortly after 6:30pm, the quartet still carry themselves with the swagger of playing just after 10. They’re lively, uncompromising and thoroughly entertaining to watch.
Whether they’re rattling and rolling through a big build-up or intricately blending their multiple vocals, the music of Body Type is compelling. It’s as indebted to a band like The Go-Betweens as it is an artist like Patti Smith, flexing its versatility with routinely impressive results. Having spent the weekend just gone in the studio with Philadelphia Grand Jury’s Simon Berckelman, their performance tonight also comes with a spring in the step – they dance as if no-one’s watching and refuse to compromise for a very different audience to their own. As Dennis Denuto so articulately put it all those years ago, it’s the vibe.
It’s bittersweet, really: as wonderful as it is to see people still supporting Holly Throsby after all these years, it’s heartbreaking to think this will be the last time she ever gets to have that feeling within the walls of the departing Newtown Social Club. Still, if anything, that context adds further sentiment to what is already one of the year’s most genuinely beautiful shows.
Throsby is touring on the back of one of her best LPs to date, After A Time, and getting to hear many of its key tracks live is a true delight when accentuated by her marvellous backing band. Marcus Whale cameos to accentuate ‘Be You Lost’ and ‘Being Born’ on the saxophone, while the baritone-voiced giant known as Jack Ladder comfortably subs for Mark Kozelek on ‘What Do You Say?’.
They’re complemented by early favourites such as ‘Up With The Birds’ and ‘Making A Fire’, which bring a gentle sway and collectively warmed hearts for good measure. “Every day feels the same,” Throsby sighs on her closer, On Night‘s ‘Things Between People’. Au contraire – not today. Not tonight. Tonight feels truly special. The kind of pure, unadulterated joy one continually strives for in life.