The Bamboos support The Cat Empire @ The Metro, Sydney
Starting slightly late to allow for the stragglers, The Bamboos appeared on stage with an eight-piece live blend of love, jazz and feel-good classic big-band sensibilities. They launched straight into slick pace changes, ebb and flow of solos and all kindsa funky from the keyboards, and keeping it tight in the brass section. Instrumentally and technically beat-perfect, the vocalist Kylie Auldist, brought it home again and again, with the smoothest tone and sexiest vocal style.
Mixing James Brown breakdowns with a 1920’s finish, the Bamboos rocked out, with deep jazz and instrumental breakdowns, allowing each individual within the collective to perfectly showboat.
Not only are these talented, classic musicians working hard, but they appear to have a damn-fine time to boot. Just for a little old-school, the band distributed limited edition tapes, yes, tapes, by throwing them to those in crowd who looked like they deserved them. Magic. Support- Schamort – these guys funk hard and should be tracked down and watched live whenever you get the chance…
Shortly after the exit of the deep jazz maestros, The Cat Empire launched on stage in a flurry of energy and began in a raucous style, giving the crowd of hardcore fans everything they could hope for, right from the off. Known for their high energy live sets, infectious and climatic tunes and outspoken environmental morals, these guys know exactly how to keep it moving at a pace rarely sustainable, especially for an 8 night run.
The Metro gigs were spot on, packed to bursting with spliced beats, breaks and brass. International but with distinct Aussie rock flavour, a heavily down-and-up-beat-simultaneously (that’s the only way to describe it and it kinda sums up the craziness), this performance was one I shall not forget in a hurry. Often described as a mix of latin, rock, and ska, this internationally influenced crew also exhibited hints of Turkish, Islamic, Irish and a multitude of specific Latino genres without batting the proverbial eyelid. Genuinely offering their hearts and guts to anyone within earshot, the sound was big and the stage presence was massive. They even got in a little Dn’B for good measure. Felix (lead vocal) was the focus of all this outstanding showmanship, and as a commited environmentalist, he took time to conduct a seminar on sustainability to attendees early before every show. Commitment to the causes (moral and musical), very commendable and nice to see someone using their platform for a greater good.
The encore was, honestly, the longest I have ever heard. Even Michael Jackson didn’t spend this much time giving the fans exactly what they wanted. The Cat Empire brandished their individual talents and collective understanding with such pride and ability that it was sometimes difficult to know where to look, because people were busting solos and complimentary improvisation all over the stage. If they could collect and process the energy this band put out over their record breaking eight nights at one venue, they wouldn’t have to worry about sustainability, as they could single-handedly supply Sydney with all it’s energy needs for a month. Even if you don’t own an album, and don’t believe the hype, check these guys out for yourself and enjoy the show….