Live Review: John Farnham, Mondo Rock, Kate Ceberano, The Badloves

7 February 2018 | 12:56 pm | Hurb Jephasun

"Farnham effortlessly joked and talked to the huge crowd between songs as he and his stellar band kept them up and dancing through the performance."

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With this event having been postponed from December last year due to severe weather, it was a relief to see Perth turn on a perfect summer's day, which duly saw the local crowd turn up in numbers early for this evening's show in the spectacular confines of Kings Park.

With the sun still high in the afternoon sky, The Badloves kicked off proceedings, delivering a polished set that included crowd favourites Memphis, Green Limousine and their big hit Lost. Despite struggling to get the early-comers to join in the chorus of The Weight, which saw frontman Michael Spiby suggesting the crowd head up to the bars for some lubrication, the band performed well in the difficult opening slot.

With the audience building, Kate Ceberano took to the stage. Her infectious energy and enthusiasm instantly had the crowd moving as she launched into her 1998 hit, Pash. Performing a mix of her own material as well as songs that had influenced her during her now-30-plus-year career, Ceberano and her band, which included brother Phil on guitar (who was also doubling as the evening's between-set DJ), effortlessly kept the crowd entertained with a great performance. It was marred, however, by an incident where her microphone became unplugged at the beginning of Bedroom Eyes. This somehow went unnoticed by the stage crew, which naturally drew the ire of Ceberano who pointed out that this would "only happen to women in Oz rock", but she quickly shrugged off the incident and finished off her set with a great version of Joe Cocker's take on With A Little Help From My Friends.

Opening up with Chemistry, Ross Wilson and Mondo Rock were next to hit the stage and took the audience on a trip back to their 1980s heyday. While the crowd were perhaps a little subdued after Ceberano's high-energy performance, Wilson and company still kept them entertained with an impressive set of their hits such as State Of The Heart and Cool World before finishing off with the obvious crowd favourite, Come Said The Boy.

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With the natural arena in Kings Park well and truly full, it was time for the John Farnham to take to the stage and he was duly greeted by thunderous applause from his adoring audience. Opening up with We Will Rock You, Farnham proved himself to be the experienced, consummate performer you would expect having had such a long and storied career. It is perhaps a little easy to forget the influence he has had on the local music industry until you are reminded just how many hit songs he has produced over the years and this evening he delivered them all to the eager audience, even going back to Sadie The Cleaning Lady much to their delight.

Obviously at ease on stage and having a great time, Farnham effortlessly joked and talked to the huge crowd between songs as he and his stellar band kept them up and dancing through the performance that also included hits like Don't You Know It's Magic, Pressure Down and his "suck up song" Burn For You. Of course Farnham finished his set off with his signature number You're The Voice, complete with bagpipe player. He returned to the stage and delivered a two-song encore that consisted of It's A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock 'N' Roll) - again with bagpipes - and A Touch Of Paradise from his hugely successful Whispering Jack album before making his way off stage to loud applause, leaving his audience buzzing.