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Andrew Strong – Live in Fremantle, 22 August 2013

| 30 August 2013 | Reply

Metropolis Fremantle, Western Australia
Thursday 22 August 2013
Reviewed by Shane Pinnegar
Photography by Maree King

Dux & Downtown opened the show with a blazing set inspired by Jon Spencer Blues Explosion – it may not have been a perfect fit with the headliner, but it sure did rock – Hell yeah!!

Andrew Strong and his 8 piece band hit the stage with a patchy In The Midnight Hour – Strong’s voice is as full and powerful as when he starred in The Commitments 21 years ago, aged 16, and in fact it’s aged very well, developing a honeyish tone like a fine whiskey on oak. The horns, however, seemed out of step with the band, as if rehearsals had been thin on the ground before showtime.

Andrew Strong Live in Fremantle 20 August 2013 by Maree King  (2)

Thankfully they pulled together quickly so as not to show their boss up (or let him down), and by the end of Hard To Handle, Strong playing along on guitar, they had their shit together.

We shouldn’t expect anything less of Strong, but twenty years on the puppy fat and long pony tail are long gone, and the scruffy jeans and pullover replaced with a sharp suit, meaning he is almost unrecognisable from his Deeko Cuffe character from the movie.

He still tears these soul classics a new one though – Show Me A Woman That’s Got A Good Man, Take Me To The River, Mustang Sally, Ride Sally Ride, Gimme Some Lovin’ and many more all get the crowd dancing, singing and throwing adoring shapes for the duration.

These are timeless songs and he does them great justice with that amazing voice and interactive stagecraft which sees them eating out of his hands all night long, evoking the atmosphere of a Southern juke joint and celebration in a way only the songs of black America can.


Category: Live Reviews, Photo Galleries

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