Live Review: The Creases, Archers, St. Morris Sinners

24 October 2015 | 10:27 am | Melina Scarfo

The usually reliable Creases suffered some unfortunate technical setbacks, but their openers helped soften the blow

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Touring around the country to celebrate their recent single Point, The Creases stopped by Rocket Bar to provide our weekly dose of indie goodness. Over the past few years, the Brisbane quartet have established their place in the scene with their swoon-worthy, shoegazing pop.

St. Morris Sinners leave an impression with their bass-driven, dirty blues. Frontman Stephen Johnson held up an open notebook as his spoken word drawl filled the room. A cover of Randy Newman’s Short People gathered some enthusiasm in the crowd before slowing down with a harmonica-fuelled waltz. There is an element of absurdity to Johnson’s persona and each song consumed him. He aggressively invaded the crowd and moved sporadically, hitting whatever he could. Their set ended with Johnson howling and curled in a ball on the dark stage.

Another local act, Archers evolve with each live show and are now heading in a darker direction. On this night, their psychedelic post-punk sound was intense and brooding. Frontman Hugh Black’s face crumpled in exertion, his screams soaring over angular guitars and intricate drumming. Naturally, friends and members of West Thebarton Brothel Party were up the front showing their support. Archers are captivating, technically precise and continue to be one of Adelaide’s best live bands.

Frontman Joe Agius beckoned the crowd closer to the stage and opened with Gradient, the title track from their debut EP. The Creases’ fuzzy indie-pop washed over the crowd like a dream. Since progressing from a two-piece, their live act is now filled out with keys, tambourine and warm vocal harmonies. How Long Till I Know features a whirring guitar line and a cover of David Bowie’s Let’s Dance provided a break from the haziness. Although vocally unresponsive, the crowd swayed and bopped along, enjoying themselves.

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Unfortunately, technical difficulties persisted throughout their entire set. Agius couldn’t hear himself and the guitars were unbalanced. The band continually requested for changes in levels and had to huddle over one mike. “Sorry if you guys just want some DJs,” one the band members joked, but they continued on, closing with the lovesick Static Lines.

While the persistent technical problems created a somewhat awkward vibe, The Creases are always a delight live and it will be interesting to see how their sound will evolve in the future. Hopefully next time around they won’t be so distracted.