Wednesday, July 23, 2008

REVIEW: Hannah Curwood, Jen Cloher and Rebekah Davies

Wine Cellar
Wednesday 23 July

Words by June Hart
Photos by Charlette Hannah

Hannah Curwood

Jen Cloher

Rebekah Davies

Tom Healy

At last! A gig which starts when advertised, and finishes before 11pm. I imagine the early finish influenced many to attend when they otherwise may not have on a 'school night'. The allure of the three songwriters was obviously strong - the Wine Cellar was completely packed with no sitting or standing room to spare.

An inspired collaboration between Hannah Curwood, Rebekah Davies, and Jen Cloher, the evening's set comprised a variety of songs from each writer's repertoire, with each alternatively taking the lead and providing backing. They were joined on stage by Hannah's partner and regular guitarist, the talented and hirsute Tom Healy.

Hannah Curwood is a funny little pixie with a sassy sense of humour that belies the power and beauty of her songs. When she pauses for breath in a dramatic song, her cheeky smile appears for a second, and is instantly gone again to be replaced by a voice which is sweet and gutsy with the slightest hint of whiskey. Her alternative folk songs have lovely melodies and subtle rhythms, and she has an easy confidence on stage that makes you feel like she just stood up at home and started playing a song to whoever happened to be there.

Apparently it was Rebekah Davies' first gig, and her beauty and the depth of her songs had the audience spellbound. Rebekah's songs had a more melancholy feel to them than the others, her deep husky voice lightly evoking her melodies. Unusual song structures and creative dynamics lent a slightly exotic air to Rebekah's folk.

Even without her band The Endless Sea, Jen Cloher is an intense performer with a wonderfully expressive voice. The Melbourne based singer almost speaks her words sometimes, then illustrates her range with a roaring rocky song. Alternative country with a modern rock twist, Jen's songs were compelling and her performance moving.

All members of the band (a.k.a TJ Healy and the Fanny Farm) provided complementary backing utilising eggs, tambourines, guitars, piano, keyboard, and gorgeous three part harmonies. The audience gave it's full attention to the performers, and was rewarded by a fine show.

1 comment:

Nick Fulton said...

Nothing is normally finished by 11pm. Well at least not on weekends. Otherwise everyone leaves the bar, no one buys drinks and the bars end up closing down.

There's a lack of venues here as it is.