Last Tuesday Alison and I were lucky enough to score tickets to see Jet at the University of Canberra. These tickets were very generously organised for us by a friend of my Dad's. This friend, Deb, is Mark's (Jet bass player) Mum. It was a long time since my name had been "on the door"!!
Anyway, Jet were supporting Powderfinger on their farewell tour. The venue was a massive outdoor big top.
After parking nearby (the parking instructions on the Powderfinger website were wrong) we got to the gig. After bypassing the huge queues and picking up our tickets we headed in.
Paul Dempsey was first on. This was a solo gig for Paul who is normally seen out playing with Triple J darlings, "Something For Kate". Apart from the sound level being way too high for an opening act he wasn't half bad and the crowd appreciated his efforts. Here's a clip I found of one of the songs he did. In the end I thought he was a bit downbeat for this particular show but I'll still be checking out his album.
Paul Dempsey - Time To Pretend: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C23XQESgaGU
Jet were next up and that's who we were there to see. I remember hearing Jet's first single and getting the album as soon as it came out. In amongst angst filled shoe gazers and electronic mind numbing dance music they were a reminder of what rock and roll should be about.
Well, they didn't disappoint and there were only two negatives to their whole show. One was that, as a support act, they didn't really get to play for that long (40-45 minutes). The other was that the event crew didn't use the big screens when they were playing. Now, there were a LOT of people in that massive tent and even tall people like me had trouble seeing much.
Musically, Jet were awesome. This track certainly got everyone energised!
Jet - Cold Hard Bitch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iEc1GSGpmRQ
Canberra crowds in my experience are pretty reserved. But maybe the only reaction to a first song I have seen that was as energetic was a small gig at Exhibition Park by four unknowns calling themselves AC/DC !
The rest of the gig was pretty much the same with the crowd lapping up Jet's hits as well as some newer tunes. There was the obligatory sing along with "Look What You've Done" that just went to show that Jet know how to play to a big, enthusiastic crowd.
AC/DC have a song called "If You Want Blood (You've Got It). My understanding is that the song is about giving crowds what they want all in the name of rock'n'roll. And I think Jet understand this. This next song probably isn't about that at all but that's what the chorus makes me think of. Another great crowd sing along song.
Jet - Get What You Need: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CvHoSIck0Y4
So, I've been a Jet fan for quite a while now. Mainly because they play good honest rock and roll. Also I like nothing better than seeing a band who understand how a guitar is meant to sound. Not over processed, not driven so hard that it is mush, just right. Jet's combination of classic guitars and amplifiers never fails to make me smile. And that drum kit...it doesn't have to be HUGE to sound big.
I guess if I had to describe Jet to someone who hadn't heard them before I would tell them that it is like listening to the Easybeats crossed with the Beatles, soaked in the classic Melbourne pub rock scene and then injected with the essence of the Energizer Bunny. And all of those things are meant to be nothing but positive. I know that they say they are heavily influenced by You Am I. I like that band as well, but Jet slay them live.
Anyhow, that's it. Great band, great show. Powderfinger...I'm going to admit now that I don't like them, I never have and probably never will. They forgot what rock'n'roll was years ago. So I was home early with Jet ringing in my ears.
Jet - Black Hearts (On Fire): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8p4-4mCWYns