Skip to main content

Tour > Review

Justin Townes Earle, Robert Ellis & Jack Carty - Byron Cultural & Community Centre

Justin Townes Earle, Pic by Stephen Booth
Feb 17th 2013 | Steve Bell
The theatre of the Byron Bay Community Centre is a small, impossibly intimate round, where even the worst vantage point seems almost in the performer's pocket. Young Sydney-based troubadour Jack Carty grew up in nearby Bellingen and seems delighted to be indulging in a homecoming of sorts, appearing barefoot and unkempt as he begins to unveil a steady flow of narrative-driven tracks. Everything, Unhappily, Giveth And Taketh Away and the poignant Travelling Shoes are highlights, and while a tad overwrought at times, the set is a fine precursor to what's about to unfold.

Emerging Americana proponent Robert Ellis claims to be under the weather tonight for the last show of his first Australian sojourn – he's being whisked away following this set to support Richard Thompson in the UK – but it doesn't seem to affect his performance one iota, his honeyed voice and intricate fingerpicking during opener Westbound Train setting the scene for a spellbinding performance. On a borrowed guitar because the hot weather has wreaked havoc with his own, the affable entertainer shows that he's part of the authentic country lineage with his dextrous skills and strong songs such as Comin' Home, Two Cans Of Paint and the lyrically Weezer-esque No Fun. A great cover of Randy Newman's Marie at the tail-end of the set completely seals the deal.

Just Townes Earle is looking very boho tonight in his flat cap and thick glasses, but he's oozing charm and engaging from the outset as he kicks off with the jaunty Memphis In The Rain. He seems in great health and spirits and delivers a moving personal introduction to They Killed John Henry, quickly moving on to affairs of the heart with touching renditions of Look The Other Way and Nothing's Gonna Change The Way You Feel About Me Now. It's fantastic seeing him operate in solo mode from such close quarters, the singer completely at ease and effortlessly charismatic as he delves into his by now considerable catalogue and plucks out a bluesy version of Ain't Glad I'm Leaving, the moving Mama's Eyes and the gorgeous Unfortunately Anna. Earle's between-song candour is completely disarming as he whips through Harlem River Blues, One More Night in Brooklyn, Christchurch Woman and Down On The Lower East Side. He harks back to the 1920s with Jimmy Cox's Nobody Knows You When You're Down And Out and makes it his own, before finishing the set with a touching new song and the evergreen Wanderin'. The besotted crowd beg for more and Earle eagerly obliges, returning to make everyone's night complete with Halfway To Jackson, Rogers Park and Dwight Yoakam's Close Up The Honky Tonks. Road trips are made for nights of music this good.

Comments

Related Articles



Poster IT

Connect with The Music

Subscribe to Daily Newsletter

Galleries

<span>Say Anything</span><br />Amplifier

Say Anything
Amplifier

<span>Torche</span><br />Oxford Art Factory

Torche
Oxford Art Factory

<span>The Whitlams</span><br />Metro Theatre

The Whitlams
Metro Theatre

<span>Soulfest</span><br />Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Melbourne

Soulfest
Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Melbourne

<span>Soulfest</span><br />Victoria Park, Sydney

Soulfest
Victoria Park, Sydney

<span>DZ Deathrays</span><br />Fowlers Live

DZ Deathrays
Fowlers Live

<span>Richard In Your Mind</span><br />Lansdowne Hotel

Richard In Your Mind
Lansdowne Hotel

<span>Missy Higgins</span><br />Crown Theatre

Missy Higgins
Crown Theatre

<span>Say Anything</span><br />Manning Bar

Say Anything
Manning Bar

this week's magazine

Digital Version
Airlie Beach Music Festival Australasian Worldwide Music Expo Beyond The Valley BIGSOUND Bleach Festival Blue Mountains Music Festival Blues At Bridgetown Bluesfest Breakfest Brisbane Festival Brunswick Music Festival Bruthen Blues & Arts Festival Caloundra Music Festival Campfire Festival CoLAB Deni Blues & Roots Dungog Festival Earth Frequency Festival Fairbridge Folk Festival Falls Festival Falls Festival Falls Festival Festival Of The Sun Follow The Sun Festival Future Music Festival Future Music Festival Future Music Festival Future Music Festival Future Music Festival Gorgeous Festival Great Southern Blues Festival Gympie Music Muster HyperFest JamGrass Music Festival Jungle Love Music & Arts Festival Just For Laughs Let Them Eat Cake Listen Out Listen Out Listen Out Listen Out Lost Paradise Manifest Melbourne Music Week Meredith Music Festival Mitchell Creek Rock 'n' Blues MOFO Mullum Music Festival Nannup Music Festival Noosa Jazz Festival NYE On The Hill Originals Music Festival Out On The Weekend Outlet Music Festival OutsideIn Paradise Music Festival Poison City Weekender Port Fairy Folk Festival Queenscliff Music Festival Rainbow Serpent Festival Riverboats Music Festival Rottofest Soulfest Soulfest Soulfest Soundwave Soundwave Soundwave Soundwave Southbound Splendour In The Grass St Jerome's Laneway Festival St Jerome's Laneway Festival St Jerome's Laneway Festival St Jerome's Laneway Festival St Jerome's Laneway Festival Stereosonic Stereosonic Stereosonic Stereosonic Stereosonic Strawberry Fields Subsonic Sugar Mountain Festival Sydney Country Music Festival Sydney Fringe Festival Tamworth Country Music Festival The Blurst Of Times Festival The Hills Are Alive Toowoomba Carnival Of Flowers UNIFY: A Heavy Music Gathering Valley Fiesta WAM Festival WOMAdelaide Woodford Folk Festival Yours And Owls

The Music Store

Australasian Music Industry Directory
The ultimate print sourcebook for all the contacts…
Jun 18th 2014
Arts Advertising Packages
The Music Arts Packages provide promotion in The Music…
Jun 18th 2014
Indie Band Advertising Packages
The Music Indie Band Packages provide promotion in…
Jun 18th 2014
Galleon Krueger for Sale
Galleon Krueger Bass Amplifier. 1001RB As new, current…
Jul 12th 2014
Jazz guitarists wanted for weekend jams.
We are a bass and drums unit rehearsing in St Peters…
Jul 12th 2014
Premier Sydney Punk/Rock Band seeks Drummer
One of Sydneys Premier Punk Rock Bands seeks energetic…
Jun 18th 2014

Listen