First of all I had planned to do a decent review of this but I am full of the cold at the moment so what follows is mainly a stream of conciousness post. I might come back and tidy up in the future so it reads better.
When I first heard about the Nick Cave tribute show that JJJ were putting on I was excited that they were coming to Ballarat. The live music scene in Ballarat is dominated by the KAROVA LOUNGE which does an amazing job attracting up and coming Australian acts, however the line up, production and setting at Her Majasty's was something that couldn't be ignored.
I am a long time Nick Cave fan and while I have never seen him perform live I have listened to every Bad Seeds album, both Grinderman albums and all of his soundtrack albums. I also enjoy his work with The Birthday Party and his two books he has published. So you could say I had great potential to be disappointed by the night if they were to butcher my favourite tracks (it didn't happen folks).
When I saw the line up JJJ had set up for this night I was excited to see and hear Adalita, Lisa Mitchell and Dan Sultan... Everyone else was just a bonus for me. Now onto the actual night.
Arriving at the theatre I couldn't help but think how strange it was to hold an event like this at a venue like Her Majasty's. I couldn't quite get my head around how we were sitting in one of the most beautiful buildings in Ballarat (Victoria possibly) and were settling down to a night of murder/heart break descriptions. The night however was flawless from the opening of Red Right Hand until the end where Adalita belted out Straight To You. The three I was really keen to see were amazing, Lisa Mitchell did an amazing version of The Ship Song and then came back later and beat that by singing Into My Arms. Dan Sultan was everything I imagined he would be, I tweeted after the show that:
"100% of the women and 99% of the men wanted to have sex with him"
I stand by that comment, the guy has a stage presence that you rarely see. Some other highlights that I can mention are a brutal contrast between back to back songs from Johnny Mackay, first of all thrashing out a Birthday Party song and immediately following that with an acoustic People Ain't No Good (which I think was my favourite track for the night). The rap version of O Children was interesting and something I really enjoyed, it was probably the most re-worked of the renditions for the night.
If I was going to be picky I would say there weren't enough Grinderman songs and there could have been more songs from non Murder Ballads albums. But that would be finding fault just to find fault. If you get a chance to go along and see this show please do it, you will not be disappointed.