This was a well organised lineup, three bands with a very similar sound and a very similar fan base as well. This helped the whole show flow very well through all three acts and kept the crowd growing as the gig continued.
Kicking the gig off was Adelaide’s very own Traveller & Fortune. A band who fit together well, with good harmonies and each instrument contributing well. Particularly good was the keyboardist who was very switched on and helped hold the whole thing together. Rolling onwards through a consistent set, Traveller & Fortune put on an enjoyable show that, at times, showed they were capable of great things.
Next up was Patrick James who kept the folk stylings going for their first show in Adelaide. They played through an enjoyable set, demonstrating okay abilities on their instruments, but never being amazing. What was amazing was their vocal abilities. The instant Patrick James starts singing, all but a few ignorant and disrespectful audience members fall silent. This is also supported by their fantastic vocal harmonies which definitely draw a few parallels towards the Fleet Foxes. These were perfectly showcased during an a capella song which saw their drummer (a disturbing lookalike to Jake Gyllenhaal-though they insist there is a hint of Matt Corby in there) join them and show off a surprisingly strong voice. This is a group who performs very well and is captivating, their songs at times are a bit meandering and could build a bit more, but they are a local band in the ilk of Fleet Foxes who put on a very good live show. You should definitely see them.
As soon as The Paper Kites strode on stage, it was clear this was a group with more confidence and charisma than those who went before them. Surprisingly, it was not lead singer, Sam Bentley, who drew your attention, but rather guitarist Dave Powys and sole female contributor Christina Lacy who were unmissable as they held their ground on the small, Jive Bar stage. It was also clear this band was capable of better crowd interaction, instantly putting the crowd at ease and drawing them in close. With greater technical ability than Patrick James, The Paper Kites’ songs developed well and showcased each member’s contribution. Lacy harmonised well throughout and added a lot of depth to the group’s sound. Her personal moment to shine was also the highlight of The Paper Kites’ set, as she duetted with guitarist Dave Powys. The audience tonight had come out for Paper Kites and they were not disappointed, with the group performing their songs with energy and commitment for their entire set. Finishing off with an unexpected encore, read off an iPhone, their relationship with the crowd was complete, relaxing their guard, they let the audience in and were rewarded with the praise they deserved.
As clever as it was, for audience numbers, to put these three groups together on the one bill (you get more people coming if all the bands are the same genre) by the end of the concert it did become quite hard to distinguish between each group’s efforts. There is only so much folk rock you can listen to in one night before your head is swimming and unfortunately this was the case here. The Paper Kites played a great gig and had the crowd in the palm of their hand, Patrick James played a great supporting set and even upstaged the headliners with their vocal prowess. It was a great night, though one which would have benefitted from a bit more diversity in the musical offerings.