Under The Southern Stars

Margaret Court Arena

It is a complete joy too not only have live music back in Melbourne, but to have international touring acts back on our shores after what seems like endless rescheduling over the last few years….even if this ‘mini-festival’ kicks off at 5PM on a Wednesday.

Under The Southern Stars in there Melbourne leg of a national tour boasted 5 acts, 4 of them international, including  Rose Tattoo, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Bush, Stone Temple Pilots & Cheap Trick.

Opening to a sparse Margaret Court Arena,  Rose Tattoo kicked off the evening blasting through their 45min set of mostly classic Tatts tunes culminating with a ripper version “Nice Boys (Don’t Play Rock n Roll)’.  Great to see Angry Anderson, backed by a solid band, in fine voice as the only original member of one of this countries finest rock exports.

Following were Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, which was such a treat to see them live here on our shores again, although maybe they were stylistically the odd ones out on this bill. Singer Peter Hayes managed to sing their set fully masked and beanie clad while Robert Levon Been struck many a pock pose on the other side of the large stage. Highlights were Beat The Devil’s Tattoo, American X and Spread Your Love.  It would have been great to see BRMC do a sideshow while they were here, they would be well suited to The Forum. Maybe next time.

An energetic Bush tore through their greatest hits back catalogue, juxtaposed with tracks from their new album The Kingdom.  Great to see Gavin Rossdale performing intensely and exceptionally happy to be on stage. Stand out tracks –  Everything Zen and Glycerine.

Stone Temple Pilots, with the addition of current singer Jeff Gutt played a solid set of hits and were sonically mesmerising. Joined on stage by drummer Daxx Nielsen, son of cheap Trick guitarist Rick Nielsen for the track Crackerman was a nice addition. So good to hear Interstate Love Song, Plush, Vasoline and Trippin’ On A Hole In A Paper Heart live in such a long time.

Cheap Trick wound out the evening, and I must say Robin Zander’s voice rocks! Rick Nielsen was a real treat to see and his guitar playing was just great. Again, Cheap Trick  played a greatest hits set, bookend with the tracks  Hello There and Goodnight and punctuated with classics like If You Want My Love, The Flame, Dream Police and Surrender. 

So good to finally witness this event and hope to see many more on our fine shores.


Words and Images by Lucas Packett


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