Reviewed on Thursday March 6
When three amazing Sydney artists get together for a show, it’s only natural to think it’s going to be a pretty awesome experience. There’s Meg Mac, star on the rise, headlining her first show of 2014; Georgia Fair, who are riding high after the release of their second album Trapped Flame, and Nic Cassey, a wonderful songwriter and musician. Yet, with so much promise, the night only left a feeling of disappointment.
Nic Cassey opened the show with an intimate performance, playing songs from his debut album Where Are You Going I Just Collected Some Pellets and some newly written ones, all solo on his keyboard before bringing on a friend to back him up on cello towards the end of his set. The beauty that underlined his songs was apparent to all, and despite a misbehaving piano at the start of the show and a few missed notes on a very new song, Cassey’s performance was an excellent start.
Georgia Fair followed up, with the duo playing an engaging set on both acoustic and electric guitar. They kicked off strong, performing a good mix of songs from both of their albums. The second half of their act was somewhat underwhelming, but the skill and ability of these two lads could not be doubted.
When the time for Meg Mac came, she stepped out blasting her powerful vocals and grooving to the soulful sounds that are becoming her trademark. Gaining shouts of admiration and love from audience members, Meg fed off it all and continued to build up on the energy, as she performed crowd favourites like ‘Every Lie’ and ‘Known Better’.
So why was the gig such a let-down?
Quite simply, the crowd would not shut up. All through Nic Cassey and Georgia Fair’s sets, the clattering of forks and knives chimed with the idle dinner conversations of “What you up to this weekend?” and “Are bananas really that good for you?” The only time people let up was if they were watching the show through their phones, or when Meg Mac came out at the end of the night. This was perhaps added to by the Vanguard’s awkward setup, which lacked both seats and standing space, with dining tables taking up a large section of floor space at the front of the stage. All in all, the discourtesy and disinterest the crowd showed towards these amazing performers was the biggest detractor in what was a fantastic show.