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Live Review: Neil & Liam Finn, The Money War

26 February 2018 | 5:59 pm | Mark Beresford

"Most attendees would be hard-pressed to find a more genuine display of emotion."

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The sweet, melancholy sounds of local duo The Money War were nothing short of perfect in warming up the arriving crowd. While newcomers to the band adapted quickly to the accessible sound straying from the stage, established fans happily bopped along to the fuzzed-out riff of Recall and the addictive hooks laid throughout.

The night was undeniably about the headlining pair, however, with a rapturous applause meeting Neil & Liam Finn from the moment they stepped onto the stage with the crowded house classic Distant Sun. The jovial pair are clearly not shy about throwing banter across the stage and it broke the ice among the sold-out crowd as the set continued through Liam's Better To Be, Neil's Chameleon Days and another classic of Fall At Your Feet. The stage chemistry between the two and the backing band was a wonder to behold. A generational gap seems to mean little, with incredibly rich harmonies and breakout instrumental exhibitions from both. Set among the stage's spiralling lights, the wild spirit of Liam and conservative technicality of Neil complemented each other wonderfully with a set that continually built momentum.

As the main set reached its climax all stops were pulled out, some Split Enz thrown at the crowd with Message To My Girl, History Never Repeats and I Got You delivering a frenzied finish. The addition of an encore was never truly in doubt, but the surprising impact of it came with the wonderfully whimsical melody of Fire In Your Belly, dedicated to collaborative songwriter and Perth local Christopher Garland. It may not have had the equivalent impact of the Crowded House anthem Better Be Home Soon, which sent the crowd into the night, but most attendees would be hard-pressed to find a more genuine display of emotion, a special highlight from Liam in a fantastic musical masterclass.