It’s always a pleasure to see Miss Roisin Murphy live as it’s never just a ‘concert’ as such but a visual feast of Performance Art and complete creativity on stage musically and stylistically and Roisin does it all in a one-woman show!
The show opened with Melbourne electronic, indie support band ‘Alto’ comprising of Hannah Lesser and Julius Dowson who entertained us with lo-fi beats and smooth vocals. Elements of trip-hop and electronica seem to be their strongest attributes musically. Lead singer, Hannah Lesser, seemed very confident as the lead and flowed along with the music as she danced. The band worked well together and suited Roisin as a support act. Watch out for them!
Before Roisin arrived on stage the crowd was treated with Roisin Murphy visuals on screen with bright shapes and her name captured and then she graced us all with her presence and opened the show with ‘House of Glass’ from her third album release ‘Hairless Toys’ which is a trippy ambient house number that slowly anticipated just what was to come. On the first number Roisin delivered High Fashion on stage with an array of colours and bold prints and it would just get more and more extravagant as the show went on including a Yellow Avant Garde dress with matching Yellow cap to printed jackets to glorious coats and much more including great props!
The band were tight and highly talented musicians adding a feast to the ears and soul whom work perfectly with Roisin on her latest shows and they all melt into each other’s visions perfectly. Roisin went on to play the funky ‘Demon Lover’ which she then combined the phenomenal ‘You Know Me Better’ from her equally phenomenal breakthrough Top 20 UK Album ‘Overpowered’ and this is when the crowd really started cheering on and the sense of excitement was getting stronger and stronger as Roisin quotes in the track ‘You Know Me Better’.
Roisin’s voice has never been stronger as it is on her recent tour and you never know what strength she will deliver with her voice and what was amazing also was her body movement which is beautiful as it’s not trained but it’s highly choreographed in Roisin’s very own unique sense of artistic self and there really is nobody else like her which was making this particular show very thrilling to witness.
Roisin went on to perform ‘Ten Miles High’ from her fourth album release ‘Take Her Up to Monto’, then onto the very fabulously funk electronic track ‘Like’ which is one of the tracks featured on her Vinyl only 12″… singles and the visuals on screen were ‘thumb likes’ to represent the ‘like’ symbol culture on social media such as Facebook etc…
As all these tracks were being performed, Roisin was throwing around pieces of wearable art and mixing it all up so we got a little bit of an outfit for a few minutes and then onto other pieces of a glorious fashionista!
Next up Roisin performed the almost lullaby-like ‘Unputdownable’ and then onto one of her more recently released single from 2019 ‘Incapable’ which reeks a deep funk stylistic groove which got everyone shaking their body down and ‘Incapable’ does indeed pick up from where ‘Overpowered’ left off.
Next up was ‘Plaything’ which was released in 2018 with a deep house groove and the video was played behind Roisin and her very fabulous band and then onto ‘Exploitation’ again with the video played on the screen with much high glamour! Roisin incorporated ‘Exploitation’ with Moloko’s classic ‘Sing It Back’ which of course the crowd went wild for as Roisin included the audience to ‘Sing It Back’ to her. Roisin then took the show up to the highest level as she crowd surfed into the audience whilst she sang Moloko’s ‘Forever More’ and the place erupted, literally! All of us in the front holding on to her legs and then onto her back while we kept her safe in the air which was truly an ecstatic experience!
My personal highlight then arrived in the form of ‘Overpowered’ which is slightly tweaked as an updated version which is even more Electronic and deeply Synth. I must say, you had to be there to experience such high Avant-Garde … This was a good 8 to 9-minute performance of ‘Overpowered’ with the screen capturing scans of people’s brains as she sang:
As science struggles on
To try to explain
Ever into my brain
‘Overpowered’ just kept building and building up as the band played the synths louder and the Electronic drummer was drumming for his life whilst Roisin slurred herself across the stage in a dream of Deep Electronica that was so beyond captivating, just magical!!!!!
Roisin then signed off with ‘Flash of Light’ which was a collaboration with Luca C & Brigante.
To say Roisin Murphy is a Queen or a Princess doesn’t quite fit the mark, why? Because Roisin Murphy is the BOSS! I urge anyone who hasn’t seen Roisin Murphy live to do so when she next hits Australian shores. There is truly no other artist that entertains to the level that Roisin Murphy does, thank you Roisin x
Reviewed by Jason Buchanan
Photos by Nadia Moth
Sunday December 15 2019