If they can never tear you apart from the kick of INXS, then an excessive dose of rock, courtesy of tribute band INXSIVE, is definitely what you need this January!
From the “high-energy” propulsion of INXSIVE founder and lead singer David Graham has emerged a conscientious and convincing live production, fuelled by a lifelong appreciation of the music of INXS. To comment upon the pivotal moment of his vocational realisation, David reminisces. “I have always been a fan, from a young age, of INXS; and a similarity was noticed in my voice as a teenager, actually; so it sort of blossomed into the first INXS band that I joined many years ago; and then, of course, I formed INXSIVE about 20 odd years ago… it’s been a journey for me.”
As the dynamo behind his active band for over twenty years, David reassures the portrayals of each personality are “something we’re very comfortable with. We drop the pretense, and our main priority is to be audience-engaging and an entertaining band… we’re very mindful of getting an audience involved and engaging them.”
As a perfect accompaniment to the well-conserved musical portrayals, the band’s mannerisms also authentically capture the original INXS qualities of lead singer Michael Hutchence; the Farris Brothers; and Kirk Pengilly. As David rationalises, it is “obviously quite important to have a fairly accurate portrayal of Michael; obviously being the key member of the band… we certainly sound a lot like them, but we do give a nod to the style of them as well.” He adds, “They’re all very competent players. We play so often actually that I do have a number of players for each instrument, but they’re all fabulous people to play with… all very aware of the style of INXS. I’ve seen them live quite a few times.”
With thousands of gigs to boast; together with over 9,000 followers on their recently-established Facebook page, INXSIVE thrives on the enthusiasm so constantly churning amid avid audiences; and whether the venue be a nightclub, a festival of 10,000 or an event like Festival of Sails in Geelong, people just love the music. “It still stands up very well today [and] very honest versions of them keep it pretty close to the album versions,” David explains. “We try to be true to the albums – people really like to hear the songs as they’re presented on the albums; [but] we do incorporate some of the live performances over the years”, including the iconic Live Baby Live performance by INXS.
Of course, an essential element for the band is to honour the INXS image through appropriate costume selections; and as David imparts, the sources and methods of procuring such clothing can be quite diverse! “One of my greatest resources are op shops. I have some fabulous stuff that I personally get from op shops, but a lot of the time we do need to get stuff created – [by] tailors; and get things made – we have a nod to certain eras of INXS – it’s not like we follow one particular look – I find myself in leathers a lot! Some of the things I have to actually make…I’ve made myself…certain jackets…that are specifically Michael!”
A special combination of appearance and vocal quality creates a marvellous synergy which is fundamental to devotees of the music. David reviews, “I think it’s very important for any tribute show to have their singer be somewhere in the vicinity. It’s very hard to sell [otherwise]; to gain that sort of popularity that perhaps we have over the years, [it is] something we really get a kick out of doing; and you never get tired of the audience reaction.”
You’ll be able to witness the best of Aussie Rock legends INXS when INXSIVE take on the Festival of Sails which runs from Saturday, January 25 to Monday, January 27, 2020.
For more details about Festival of Sails, visit www.festivalofsails.com.au
Written By Renée N. Abbott