Show Review: John Farnham 12.12.15

Published on theMusic.com.au, Dec 2015

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A DAY ON THE GREEN

Nostalgic Aussie pub rock with a hint of saxophone delivered by The Black Sorrows wasn’t a bad way to spend a Saturday afternoon.

Doing his best to connect with a tame and restless, slowly building audience, the only original member of the band, Joe Camilleri, had enough hits up his sleeve to keep the masses satisfied.

Ross Wilson, however, wasn’t about to let the audience sit back and relax, demanding interaction with timeless classics from his Daddy Cool and Mondo Rock days, which set the perfect tone for what followed.

The sun may have disappeared by the time Daryl Braithwaite graced the stage for the night’s most energetic performance, but the Summer Love was just getting started.

His charismatic wit had punters divided one minute (mentioning Collingwood is a sure-fire way to instantly make 6,000 enemies in WA) and singing in harmony the next.

There was never a dull moment as Braithwaite and band powered through a hit-packed set that culminated in Sherbet classics Howzat and The Horses.

Although Braithwaite’s got a solid voice, no one comes close to the instantly recognisable sounds of the one and only John Farnham; that much was sure during opener Age Of Reason.

A grand entrance and even more lavish production amplified emotions, as Farnham danced his way around the stage with grin. The lights stayed up for a Whispering Jack classic that gave numerous Reasons to sing along.

At 66 years of age, he was “rooted… to the spot”, and although his cheeky, self-deprecating humour was a nice touch, his age didn’t affect his performance ability, with many Hearts On Fire throughout the set.

Farnham’s name was front and centre, but he handed out praise to various individuals almost after every song, from the band around him to others who have contributed to his career, giving accolades to co-writer Brian Cadd in Don’t You Know It’s Magic and Mondo Rock guitarist Eric McCusker – who had performer with Wilson earlier – for his part in No One Comes Close.

“I wish I had that mullet. I miss that thing. It was world class,” he said, welcoming Touch Of Paradise. An odd transition, but many agreed. Farnham may have a little less hair now, but his voice and loyal fan base are still in fine form, that much was clear from That’s Freedom, Pressure Down, Little River Band’s Playing To Win and epic, expected finale You’re The Voice.

A Day On The Green’s latest venture shone a spotlight on “some of the greatest talents Australia’s ever produced”, and by the final note of a cover of AC/DC’s It’s A Long Way To The Top faded out, it was clear the hits throughout the evening were some of the best ever written.

http://themusic.com.au/music/livereviews/2015/12/16/john-farnham-kings-park-and-botanic-garden-daniel-cribb/

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