I caught Top Lip’s first ever gig back in February of this year, and from note #1 it’s obvious they’ve not wasted the time. Despite being a man down tonight and limited to a three-piece, there’s no sense of limit here, it blows the doors off. It has the Australian sound down pat, full of sunshine and thrum and joy, occasionally nodding back to the 90s, but really living for today’s sunny afternoon, the soundtrack to the drive home. At least four songs raise the hackles on my ear hair, while “Dumb” is a pure dead belter. Kickass.
Red Wine Roses come off like a band who want to sound like the Stones but want to act like the Libertines. The guitars have tone to spare, the rhythm is solid as all hell, and the vocals sear and sandpaper, and there’s even a saxophone. Every note basically sounds like filth and it’s fun like a good stiff drink of hard liquor.
In an unusual intermezzo, we also get a short burlesque routine from Miss Violet Viper, who for a few minutes of tightly choreographed and athletically-performed dance. It’s impressive, and predictably fires up the boys in the bands who are down the front. Not the normal order of things at gigs, but a lot of fun.
By the time Letters To Lions come onstage, the wheels are coming off in the crowd and there’s well-oiled enthusiasm, and you don’t have to be roaring, stage-diving drunk to understand why (although there’s plenty of that too). Coming off the end of a tour, the band are in high spirits and have brought a set along to match/ It’s all big and towering, and it blows away the cobwebs to fuel a late-night sprint into darkness and chaos, grinning like an idiot on the way, heads hanging out of the windows.
FULL PHOTO GALLERIES
Letters To Lions
Red Wine Roses
Miss Violet Viper