"The fast-rising Melburnians returned straight to the music, crowd-pleaser 'Dancing In The Moonlight' met with silly dance moves from the crowd."
With cruise ships alight in the harbour, indie festivities were in full swing at Hobart Brewing Company for the final stop on Slum Sociable's tour.
With only a week until Christmas, early gig-goers milling across the picturesque waterfront were treated to Teischa (last name Jones), who is an artist a long way from her home in Western Australia. The 20 year old needed nothing but her rich voice to spellbind the Hobart audience. Once the crowd appreciated how talented this vocalist was, the chatter settled down quickly. It was difficult to pick a favourite from the set, which boasted a consistent minimalistic quality throughout and Teischa's pleasantly effacing stage presence. Deeply moody production met with sombre melodies in Trick Of The Light; absorbing to say the least. Couldn't Care Less showcased Jones's penchant for unconventional songwriting, with crowd members nodding their head subtly to the beat.
Vocal acrobatics gave way to lavish piano ballads from the young artist, which were met with sensible applause from the crowd. The fluttering, rising and falling of notes gave each track a less rigid and rehearsed feel than most solo performers manage to create. Triple j Unearthed followers might recognise tracks from Jones's self-titled EP and earlier work. But either way, this artist is one to let her music speak for itself. Tapping into heavy themes at times, Midnight Hour - "I need something to escape my mind" - was a rousing conclusion to a fine set and a track with radio hit written all over it.
The theme of emerging talent continued with Slum Sociable. Despite the hype, Miller Upchurch and Edward Quinn quickly established a casual vibe onstage, grinning at each other and laughing at their mistakes - energy that the crowd fed off. All Night epitomised the difference between their live and recorded sound, upbeat as well as dreamy with a kick that had members of the crowd rolling their shoulders and dipping to and fro. You know a track hits the right note when the crowd hums along even when they don't know the lyrics. The low fidelity and psychedelic edge to Castle hit home strongly, with Upchurch swivelling about, tambourine in hand. It had a feel reminiscent of Cloud Control. Meanwhile, the slow-burning, electronic R&B tracks off the Slum Sociable album suited a live setting. Mellow choruses were a fitting complement to the champagne moments of the set, where at one point a smooth synth and electric guitar section matched the trajectory of Upchurch's beautiful falsetto. Brief jamming sessions, especially from Dylan Savage on the bass with some perfectly timed key changes, were a clear highlight. Their build-ups were so good that, alongside tropical chimes and brass, they had entire sections of the crowd tilting back in perfect synchronicity. The crowd cheered when Upchurch exclaimed, "Yeah!" so he repeated it again and again with the response from the crowd getting louder each time.
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After the whistle and lazy beat of Name Call rounded up the set, Upchurch revealed that he had welcomed his Tasmanian family to see out the tour in style and a cheer rose from said family in the audience. Their pride was clear. One had even come from a wedding, climbing someone's shoulders in a white suit and getting all of the attention for a short moment. The fast-rising Melburnians returned straight to the music, their crowd-pleasing cover of Toploader's Dancing In The Moonlight met with silly dance moves from the crowd as well as a couple of wonderful fools balancing cups on their heads and a sarcastic heckler screaming, "Have my babies!". Upchurch joked that the short encore song was "all we got... we don't have any more songs", which was met with loud applause and cheers as the set came to its satisfying conclusion.