Live Review: Noah Reid @ Astor Theatre, Perth

4 October 2023 | 12:40 pm | Rachel Finucane

As much as our Spotify likes section is growing, Noah Reid’s top skill appears to be crowdwork.

Noah Reid

Noah Reid (Credit: Vanessa Hines)

More Noah Reid More Noah Reid

Rattle off descriptors: serenades their long-time beau, has an impressive collection of button-up shirts, and is a fully-fledged resident of a one-star-rated town. Your opposing player will probably knock Patrick Brewer’s face card down in a Schitts Creek Guess Who rivalry, no?

Before we go any further, such things do exist! It might not be near the other “Everything’s Fine” Tour merchandise, of which every record player around the country will be spinning the sold-out Adjustments vinyl except for ours. Nor how we spent our time. However, ask any ordinary fan, and they’ll point you in the right direction to the exact Etsy shop. 

Rattle off those traits again, and we get a perfect snapshot of Noah Reid. Or, er, nearly perfect after we subtract one. We’re so far from the wholesome welcome sign that even Alexis Rose couldn’t clink her knock-off ruby slippers to return home. Rather, we're in Perth, en route to the Astor Theatre. “Western Australia; I don’t think I thought I would ever be here,” he muses. “But I’m happy that I am.”

Yeah, we know you’re onto our ruse. Patrick Brewer is Noah Reid, or should we say that Noah Reid portrays Patrick Brewer? Of course, he’s not asking one of the many filling out the stalls about this doppelganger crisis. They’re more focused on bandmates’ banter, especially if seated up front in the theatre’s plush chairs. There’s Jasper Smith on lead guitar, Kurt Nielsen on bass, Adrian Cook on keyboards, and the bitter birthday boy Jamie Kronick on drums.

Maybe they’re seated on the balcony, way above the main floor’s sprawling wallpaper. If one perched a television on it, it would feel like a living room. That’s how small the room appears. Either way, they all entered the building in a flurry when a pink sunset painted the evening sky. 

“Journalists asked me if I would do this song,” Noah shrugs. We haven’t meant to draw ourselves into the meta-ing, but we’re now smack-dropping into it. That knowing grin sneaks back in, pink shades dipping into a midnight blue, until the stage lights around him turn so obsolete that they only spotlight him. He’s daring to become a mirage. 

Don't miss a beat with our FREE daily newsletter

Then, F-major intertwines with guitar plucking. It causes an uproar of applause as if we’re back in Rose Apothecary, Patrick’s partner’s store, hearing The Best for the first time. It’s a cover on top of a cover. When writing the show, showrunner Dan Levy had Tina Turner’s infamous version in mind, even though Bonnie Tyler is the OG. 

However, we’ve reached the encore peak of the evening. Guitar picks are dusting the floor. Noah tossed them out in Australian vigour as the intimate slumber turned to rock, matching the hypnotic red lightning. So, we should probably hit pause and rewind. It’s akin to what everyone in that room wanted to do after he raised his beer in salute. 

Just how does Noah dust off his character profile to become a part of the collection of actors turned singers, anyway? Like everyone else, he builds up his Spotify monthly listeners through his television shows' cult-like viewership. On there, one would find the lullaby entrancing Honesty, and the country-stylized Got You, which scores an instrumental convo between Noah and guitarist Jaspar. Their strings teeter into a hip-shaking groove. 

For False Alarms—symbolic of the amber light that comes just before diving head first into a relationship—he’s perched at the piano. Starting with squeaky, Prince-like musing, Noah slinkily swings his vocals around the opening verse’s notes. Much like a seasoned actor who easily shifts between narrative tones, he also uses that tool to flicker between sounds. He switches up the pitch of his vocals to a gravelly spellbound with the repeated utterance, "I want to fall in love with you." All these appear on the evening’s setlist, synching to its imminent green heart on the streaming app.

As much as our Spotify likes section is growing, Noah’s top skill appears to be crowd work. His comedic anecdotes make the interchange of weaving between songs seamless, though inspiring the fire brigade’s number to sit in our back pockets. During pandemic times, he would go into his shed to burn Amazon boxes. Yeah, you know, his friends turned it into a meditating ritual. They even helped pen a lyric: “I’d rather stand alone and burn a cardboard box.” 

Not one for breathwork? No worries. How about some time travel? “Flown three hours, gone back to 1994,” Noah says of the familiar Perth phrase. If you were there that night, you might’ve looked to your right to see a guy in the crowd wearing a Peaky Blinders-esque hat. We hope you splash all futuristic secrets over TikTok. 

Ultimately, if Noah had to give up his Schitt’s Creek residency, we’re glad he decided to become a momentary tourist in Perth. Upon skipping his flight back home, he may come gunning for the real-life casting of Mayor Roland Schitts’ job. Between signing a book off stage handed over from a fan to a handler before the performance even began, to staying way past the venue’s curfew to take selfies, he’s kind enough to be a man of the people. Plus, he has our vote if weekly town meetings become musical splendour.