There is nothing quite like watching an artist go to work completely stripped back bare to being acoustic. Of course when bands like Nirvana and Pearl Jam have done it in the past they have had the force of a whole band. When Kevin Mitchell from Jebediah does it as Bob Evans he takes the next level of roarness.
Melbourne’s summer was over and Bob Evans arrived in the beautiful Dandenong Ranges on a wet cold night, but things were as snug and intimate as ever at Belgrave’s Sooki Lounge. For anyone that has never been to what is Australia’s best venues it feels like you have arrived in a bohemian theatre where you should be ordered a whiskey instead of a beer. The intimate setting though added to the experience of the night, just occasionally interrupted by the sounds of the nightclub downstairs… which Evans joked made it feel like we were sitting in Jamiroquai’s lounge room.
So intimate was the show that it felt at times that Evans was playing live in our house with a group of friends sitting around. His raffle idea saw people calling out what they wanted him to play and the result saw him covering the likes of Lily Allen (which saw him tell one of the most hilarious stories of the night of how people reacted to the lyrics of the song when he first covered it) and Katy Steele’s Little Birdy… the latter seeing him deliver an amazing rendition of ‘Beautiful To Me’.
Evans’ love of covers also saw him perform one of his favourite songs The Buzzcock’s ‘Ever Fallen In Love (With Someone You Should’ve’) and under much persuasion from the audience he played what turned out to be one of the highlights of the night a version of Jebediah’s ‘Harpoon’ which very quickly had people singing along. Audience joining in was the theme of the night though as they were also only to keen to also join on fan favourites ‘Where Did I Go Wrong,’ ‘Nowhere Without You’ and ‘Don’t You Think It Is Time.’ Then came the really special time of the night when Evans climbed down off the stage and came down in to the crowd to play ‘Darlin’ Won’t You Come.’ This truly beautiful moment is the kind of moment that reminds you just how special it is to be a music reviewer and is a snapshot of music history that you will one day tell your grandchildren about.
Making the night even better was the heartfelt renditions of ‘Happy Tears’ (which is about his children), Come Home (about his wife) and ‘I Don’t Want To Grow Up Anymore’ which is the kind of track that leaves you deep in thought as you mull over the lyrics.
Bob Evans live in concert is something that every music lover should experience at least once in their life. This night is a night that is going to be treasured by everyone at the Sooki Lounge that night for the rest of their lives… it was truly mesmorising.