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Live Review: The Jungle Giants + Moses Gunn Collective + Foreign/National - Adelaide Unibar (30.05.15)

The Jungle Giants made their return to Adelaide after some time away to an enthusiastic, sold out Unibar crowd. The line up is a triple j loving, indie pop fan dream and is a good indicator of some of the great talent currently emerging out of the country's east coast at the moment. In both Foreign/National and Moses Gunn Collective we have two incredibly promising live bands, so I've got to thank The Jungle Giants and their tour organisers for giving both the platform to reach more people around the country on this run.

Live Review: Aganst Me! - Metro Theatre, Sydney (30.05.15)

Half way into the documentary We’re Never Going Home, a record executive sidles up alongside Laura Jane Grace – back then Tom Gabel – and tells her you could do it on yourself, you don’t even need the other guys. Grace looks him back with a look that is a mixture of disbelief, humour and complete and utter disdain and immediately passes the news onto the rest of the band, shaming the rep.

Live Review: sleepmakeswaves + Gay Paris - Adelaide Unibar (29.05.15)

Photo: Stuart Sevastos.

Having missed sleepmakeswaves at Jive the last time they were in Adelaide, I knew I couldn't miss out on seeing them again, as it was quite obvious the momentum generating around their music was only continuing to grow stronger and stronger. They were upgrading venues with each tour, so going from seeing them blow the roof off the small Cranka bandroom back in 2013 to seeing them now performing at the Adelaide Unibar in 2015, was an experience I was glad to have been a part of.

Vivid Live Review: FCX, 10 Years of Future Classic - Sydney Opera House (29.05.15)

Photo by Prudence Upton for Sydney Opera House

The two words I most closely associate with Aussie label Future Classic would be 'consistency' and 'reinvention'. Over the past decade FC have remained one of the most consistent go-to bodies for quality electronica based off of their passion and discerning ear for refreshing, progressive productions and talent. What's more is that they constantly reinvent not only themselves, but the scene around them, and are responsible for the big mark Australian electronica has made and continues to make around the globe. We always knew that it was going to be a big deal when they hit the landmark 10 year anniversary.

Vivid Live Review: Grace Jones - Carriageworks, Sydney (31.05.15)

One thing you can always expect of a live performance from the imitable Grace Jones is an abundance of costume changes. And these aren't your average costumes either; big, bold, attention-grabbing pieces that reflect the animation and energy she brings to the stage. At 67 years old, Grace Jones still puts on a fantastic, entertaining performance, and she's more tongue-in-cheek then ever about her career and her status as an icon across pretty much everything.

Vivid Live Review: Daniel Johns - Sydney Opera House (28.05.15)

Image Credit: Prudence Upton

Few artists turning out at the Opera House for Vivid carried with them as much mystique as Daniel Johns. Having spent the last four years completely out of the spotlight in a self-imposed exile, Johns had managed to disappear from the public knowledge to an extent. First single "Aerial Love" made a clear statement of his new direction, the minimalist R&B inspired production from Lorde and Broods collaborator Joel Little, sharp and soulful placing Johns' increasing confidence in his vocal range at the forefront.

Live Review: San Cisco + Crooked Colours + Methyl Ethel - The Gov, Adelaide (28.05.15)

Fremantle four-piece San Cisco captivated a sold out crowd in Adelaide on Thursday night, armed with the cool tunes of their latest album Gracetown. Syrupy smooth vocals paired with their carefree sound had everyone at The Gov enthusiastic and ready to groove. The audience packed into the venue early, collecting their drinks from the bar in advance to ensure they secured a spot centre-stage.

Vivid Live Review: Bill Callahan - Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House (29.05.15)

Photo Credit: Daniel Boud, Sydney Opera House (Used with Permission)

Formerly known as Smog, and the brief touring and life companion of the incomparable Joanna Newsom, Bill Callahan is sitting on an impressive catalogue of music that spans some 25 years and 14 albums. This week, he's touring Australia for the first time in some six years, off the belated back of his last record Dream River (not counting the "dub" version released a year later) and is in Sydney to play two shows as part of the popular Vivid Festival.

Vivid Live Review: Morrissey - Sydney Opera House (26.05.15)

It is a true 'pinch yourself' moment when you see the great Steven Patrick Morrissey live for the first time and have the love-affirming realisation that his voice has aged like a fine red wine. Vivid LIVE's 'An Evening with Morrissey', which continues over the next few days in the Concert Hall at Sydney Opera House, delivered the iconic former front man of The Smiths and a five-piece band to a diverse crowd of fans which showcased that the love for this man spans generations and will likely never fade. Not even when he chooses to stick pretty much exclusively to his solo work.

Vivid Live Review: The Preatures - Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House (28.05.15)

Image Credit: Daniel Boud

It's been reminded to me quite a few times - by the band and others - that I was the first person to ever publish written work about a group formerly known as The Preachers. It's not something I bring up now because I feel I'm entitled to take some glory from this fact, I didn't even know it was they case until they told me it last year, but rather set the scene for this piece, which - some five years later - sees the band conquering the world and selling out a show in Australia's most prestigious venue, the Sydney Opera House.

Live Review: British India - The Basement, Sydney (24.05.15)

Selling out shows all over the country, British India added a second Sydney show onto their schedule, and played at the recently renovated Basement.

Live Review: Gang of Youths + Ecca Vandal - The Exeter, Adelaide (24.05.15)

A sold out crowd masked the Exeter’s bricked beer garden, standing atop wobbly benches to get an unobstructed view of the low-rise stage. Glasses of beer were substituted for brimming jugs, cementing everyone’s unwillingness to lose their hard earned spot.

Vivid Live Review: Squarepusher - Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House (22.05.15)

Tom Jenkinson, better known as Squarepusher, embodies the three pillars of Vivid Sydney, so it's surprising that it has taken this long for the now world renowned festival of light, music, and ideas to lure him to Australia. In giving Jenkinson the John Sutherland Theatre, an intimate theatre in the Sydney Opera House, to showcase two hours of electronic mastery, Vivid Live delivered us quite the exciting journey into high-end technology, immersive visuals, and productions focusing on Squarepusher's latest album Damogen Furies.

Vivid Live Review: Sufjan Stevens - Sydney Opera House (22.05.15)

Photo: Daniel Boud

It’s the hardest part of being an artist – letting go of your work – and Sufjan Stevens lets go all the way. In the first of his performances for Vivid 2015, he transformed the Concert Hall into a mesmerising montage of his life’s narrative. First thought when the lights came on is that it had to be this venue – such a large sound compared to the record and the seating meant that most of the crowd didn’t hold up their smartphones for the entire show.

Live Review: The Aussie BBQ ft. Flyying Colours + Millions + Klo + Tora and more - Hoxton Square, London (17.05.15)

Pictured: Klo

Sunday in London saw the return of The Aussie BBQ - the live initiative of our music export body Sounds Australia. Hundreds of music fans - both locals and expats - came out for the event which saw over twenty Australian artists performing on two stages over ten hours at the Hoxton Bar and Grill in Shoreditch. It was a chance for us to see well established artists like Safia and Remi an become acquainted with some newer talent, some of whom are now based here in the UK.