The Palais, St Kilda
9 and 10 September 2010
In the spirit of being dedicated to bands close to my heart, I saw Angus and Julia Stone twice last week.
I went with my friend Elvira the first night and a friend from work and her family on the second night.
Here is Elvira and I before the show on Thursday.
When they finally did come on stage, it was magic. And I remembered why I feel in love with their music four years ago. Honest, devastating lyrics that I can relate to, beautiful voices that complement each other so well, and a fantastic array of instruments.
The show opened with the two of them alone, in front of the curtain, doing an acoustic version of Santa Monica Dream. I adore this song. 'You're somewhere, I'm somewhere, I could go there but I don't...'. They proved they don't need a backing band to sound brilliant. The acoustic set continued with Bella, and midway through the song, the curtain was raised to reveal a beautiful set and the full band. It was amazing!
My favourite song was next. For You. 'I'll tell you what you already know. If you love me with all of your heart, if you love me I'll make you a star in my universe...'. It was amazing, and I had tears in my eyes seeing it live.
They played many great songs - some from Down the Way, others from A Book Like This, three covers and some new songs too. A highlight was Julia doing a song from her solo album The Memory Machine. The song was called Where does the Love Go and featured a shy Angus on trumpet.
My other favourite part was when And the Boys was sung, and gold really fell from the ceiling.
Maybe it's because I've seen them before, and that they've got two albums and a number of EPs, but there were so many songs I wish they could have played. I really wanted them to play Draw Your Swords and Paper Aeroplane. Maybe next time. I could listen to them play all their songs forever. And another thing, maybe it's because they're more polished and refined for a venue like The Palais, but there was less funny banter on stage in the first concert. I love hearing Julia's funny or sad stories. There was far more banter on stage in the second concert though.
I bought a hoodie and a poster on the first night. What is with the size of band merchandise?? My hoodie is a size small and it fits like an extra large on me. Meanwhile the Powderfinger tshirt I bought is a large but fits like a size 10. Bizarre! On the second night, I bought Julia's solo album which is stunning - very dark and calm.
Friday night's show was just as magic. I think I enjoyed it more because of the banter between Angus and Julia and to the audience. They are so humble, so beautiful.
The crowd was noisier though, hollering 'I love you Angus...Marry me Julia!'
During the first two songs, there was some kerfuffle two rows in front of us. An extremely drunk girl sat in the seat with a jolt and promptly spewed up over the floor and maybe on the people in front of her. She and her friend were removed from their seats and the mess was cleaned. Yuck. And a waste of a show for them!
Paul Kelly did not appear, but they did a few different songs which included a number of new songs they'd both written recently. One of the most devastating songs was about Julia's past love who cheated on her. With lyrics like 'you had her in the bed with my hair still on the pillow', I couldn't help but get a lump in my throat. I think this is one of Julia's rawest song yet. I can't want to hear it recorded. Amazing. I also said to my friend that Angus writes hopeful songs about love, and Julia writes sad songs about love.
The thing I marveled at was their harmony and chemistry on stage. When either of them sing, the other complements them in such a way that it shows a sort of respect. They either watch on in awe, or contribute to parts of the song, layering the sound. Amazing.
Here are some pictures from Friday night.
I feel so proud that Angus and Julia Stone hail from Australia. They have succeeded in leaps and bounds, and their future as song writers and musicians is nothing but promising.
Thanks for great shows Angus and Julia. You are amazing!