Gig Review: Lightspeed Champion @ Northcote Social Club
Nothing beats a gig midweek to make the working week feel a hell of a lot faster!
I was very excited walking into the cosy Northcote Social Club tonight to see Folk/Alt Country superhero and former Test Icicle, Lightspeed Champion. Not only is his album one of my favourites so far this year, but hearing he can pull out a great show made me feel very anxious to hear him live.
When the mastermind behind Lightspeed Champion Dev Hynes walked out to the front of the stage, there is this sense that a good mate has arrived to play at a house party, such is his charming self deprecating humour and warmness to the small, but packed out crowd. Straight away he starts engaging with the punters, asking how the week was, even chatting for about five minutes when someone in the crowd tells him how they went to the Melbourne Aquarium. Then a few expats from England start shouting out where they are from and there goes another conversation, all this before a single note is struck.
When the music finally begins, it makes everyone silent. Hearing Dev’s amazing voice and engaging guitar work makes you forget about all your worries. Launching straight into “Tell me what its worth” left me in a daze. Listening to the enlightening violin, drums (played by the best looking drummer ever) and bass all synch into one very tight band was a pleasure to listen and watch.
Playing nearly all the tracks of the album, they play an even more uplifting version of ”Galaxy Of The Lost” followed by “I Could Have Done This Myself”. By the end of “Dry Lips” we were truly spoilt to witness the tremendous amount of energy and musicianship created by this band, led by the disgustingly talented Dev Hynes.
More banter between Dev and the crowd and you really start to forget that he is actually from overseas and this is his first gig in Australia. Girls start to call out if they can bring him home, as he cheekily puts his glasses on to see if they are “fit”.
Before they launch into a few “new” songs he asks the crowd to be patient by telling everyone “if you guys don’t like it, it’s because we fucked up. I like the reassurance”. This was hard to believe considering the perfect execution to a new song that sounds like we have a lot to look forward to in future releases.
Finishing before the encore they play the truly epic, 10 minute plus “Midnight Surprise”. Leading into this track was the well received Star Wars theme songs, which make all nerds in the crowd cream their pants. He caps a truly fantastic night by ironically playing “All to Shit”, before leaving the crowd thinking to themselves how lucky they were to see a remarkable talent in such an intimate setting.
Check out photos from the show here