Live Review: Drugdealer @ Factory Theatre

8 March 2023 | 12:19 pm | Shaun Colnan

"A show that left the audience buzzing with excitement."

Pic by Andrea Adolphy

Pic by Andrea Adolphy

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In a warm and intimate venue like the Factory Theatre in Marrickville, the LA band Drugdealer brought their signature psychedelic pop sound to a receptive audience. The stage was adorned at times by a strange Californian - Kevin - who the band taunted in a light-hearted manner, creating a fun and befuddling atmosphere that complemented their music perfectly.

Lead singer Michael Collins was a charismatic presence, dressed in a retro brown suit with a wide smile on his face. He effortlessly charmed the crowd with his witty banter, introducing each song with a story or a joke. The band was tight and polished, seamlessly transitioning from one song to the next, each one more infectious than the last.

Highlights of the set included the melancholic and meditative The Real World, which had the audience clapping and dancing along, and the dreamy Honey, which showcased Collins' smooth vocals and the band's intricate harmonies. They also played several tracks from their latest album, Hiding In Plain Sight, which has been hailed as a return to form for the band.

The standout moment of the night came during their performance of Suddenly, a tender ballad that built to a powerful crescendo. While the band sorely missed the vocal versatility of Weyes Blood, who they collaborated with in the studio, the song's popular appeal held out and so the crowd swayed along to the emotive lyrics and Collins' soaring falsetto.

Drugdealer put on a show that left the audience buzzing with excitement. Their blend of psychedelic pop, folk, and soul is truly unique, and their live performance was peppered with quips which played with a jocund audience.

Earlier, Sydney artists Fig and Tex Crick played to a large crowd who seemed eager to support the locals. Crick, who hails from Coledale, played tracks from his Mac DeMarco-produced LP, Live In...New York City, like the catchy Peaches And Cream. While he played solo, dwarfed by unattended instruments, his lyricism was unique and endearing. Fig produced a set of earnest indie-folk tracks in a fairly polished live set.

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