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dbMagazine reviews The Church's EMD tour in Adelaide Print E-mail
Wednesday, 30 November 2005
Originally published at http://http//

The Church
Plus Andrew P Street
Governor Hindmarsh Hotel, Fri 12 Nov 2005

dB's own Andrew P. Street opened the night, putting in a decent performance (he'd probably modestly disagree) to a polite yet sparse audience, wearing his (indie) heart on his sleeve so to speak. At first thought a seemingly strange support choice, it made sense considering the way The Church opened their set.

They started with a gentle, acoustic version of The Unguarded Moment, a re-worked interpretation from their forthcoming acoustic album of new and old songs. For Sealine, they all swapped instruments - setting a dynamic tone that continued throughout the evening. They then rolled out the hits, playing soft and subdued versions of Under the Milky Way and Metropolis, with Willson-Piper singing Tristesse to finish off the first part of the show. These new interpretations of old favourites opened the songs up, revealing a fresh core to them.

With a change of pace, The Church burst into the sound and form that they are renowned for; sonically charged explorations of aural imagery and vision. Complemented by the fractal, interstellar formations and colourised photos conceived by multi-media artist David Duchow, The Church created a show that was engaging, mesmerising and totally enjoyable. The audience had filled out and responded heartily, yelling and whistling after each song.

The Koppes/Willson-Piper guitar work proving their consummate musicianship, they delivered a sparklingly damaged version of Reptile, breaking it into pieces then restoring it with the persistent refrain. Jazz, from their latest release Beside Yourself, slowed things a little, tempered the energy in the room. The Awful Ache and Invisible, proof that the newer songs are as good as the old ones. Returning for two encores, The Church excelled themselves with a meandering intensity, rising with Kilbey playing guitar alone on stage, riding effects, Koppes joined in with his plaintive style, and eventually Powles and Willson-Piper on bass joined them to take the sounds into a swirling, pounding maelstrom. They never failed to delight both the audience and themselves. The Church are a band that still relevant, creatively aware and more than willing to take us wherever they journey to.

Blake Lewis

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