Puscifer‘s latest Money $hot tour seemed to be getting great reviews on it’s various US and European legs, and Maynard James Keenan and co decided to share the love with Australian audiences with a tour taking in most capitals in Australia, as well as the MOFO Festival at Hobart’s MONA. I was lucky enough to get along to the show at Thebarton Theatre here in Adelaide, and can report I had a great time!
First stop of the evening was a wine tasting session at local bar Udaberri run by Matt from Sip Wines. He’s the Australian distributor for Maynard’s drops, and had a few bottles open for sampling. For tasting were three reds and one white, the highlight for me was the Tarzan, which Matt tells me is out of stock! I also had a chance to try Sense of Compression by Ochotoa Barrels – it’s a collaboration between a local Adelaide winemaker and Maynard. It’s an expensive wine (was $13 for half a glass!) and while I enjoyed it, I came away preferring the much cheaper stuff. Perhaps wine aficionados would appreciate it more then I!
After a quick bus trip home to pick up the car, I made my way to Thebby (as it’s know locally) for the show. Entry to the venue was pretty easy, unless you were silly enough to pick up tickets at the door, for which there was a pretty long queue. Once inside I grabbed a beer, chatted to a couple of other Fourtheye readers and then made my way into the main hall. It was unusual to see this venue full of chairs, as every other show I’ve been to here has been general admission. Unfortunately my seat wasn’t quite as close as I’d like, and was a bit off to the side, but the view was good enough despite that.
At around 8:00pm Luchafer came onstage to do their wrestling act. The sound was pretty muffled – I got the impression they were taunting each other or having some form of dialog, and it’s possible we were meant to hear what was being said, but the sound was poor enough at this stage that I had no clue. They “wrestled” on stage for about 20 minutes, the highlight of which was a Trump style pussy grab (with retribution). It was interesting, but 20 minutes was more than enough. The wrestlers were back for more antics during the show.
Puscifer made their way on stage at around 8:30. Maynard and Carina Round started up on the wrestling ring, but moved around the stage during songs and between the 4 acts. They played pretty much the same setlist they have for most of the Money $hot tour. I enjoyed it and didn’t really find that there were any dull moments during the show. For the most part the songs were heavier and had an extra punch missing from the recorded versions. As a fan of heavier music unsurprisingly this went down pretty well with me! I would have liked to have heard a few more older songs, but overall was happy with the setlist choice.
It was a pretty cool visual show as well, with a range of videos projected on the big screens being the band (and occasionally on two screens either side). Highlights were the excellent visuals from the Grand Canyon video. There were the occasional skits shown as well, but these seemed to suffer from poor sound quality, and frankly missed the mark for me. They didn’t appear to get many laughs from the wider audience either. They were only a very small segment of the show though, so didn’t really take anything away from the night overall.
The crowd was pretty quiet, remaining seated for the first two songs until Maynard proclaimed that if a 52 year old can dance on stage, then so can the rest of the crowd. Personally I’m not a huge fan of seated shows – if Maynard wanted people to stand and dance, then it should have been GA. Despite a few signs in the lead-up that the crowd would be small, it seemed as though the venue was reasonably full – it wasn’t a sell out but didn’t appear to be many spare seats either.
As mentioned before, the sound quality of the videos and wrestling was pretty poor, but the quality of the show seemed reasonably good. Maynard’s vocals were relatively low in the mix I thought, but other than that didn’t have many complaints. Maynard’s performance through the show was strong, and while Puscifer may not have the same vocal challenges Tool does, he sung well and was quite animated during the show.
In summary it was a really good night – I enjoyed the show from beginning to end and was very happy that Puscifer made the effort to visit our frequently skipped over town. I’d happily go seem them again, and have no hesitation recommending others to check them out when they get the chance!