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LIVE: ASH, Perth – 19 March, 2016

| 28 March 2016 | Reply

LIVE: ASH, Perth – 19 March, 2016
The Rosemount Hotel, Perth, Western Australia – Saturday, 19 March, 2016
With Dream Rimmy
Reviewed by Shane Pinnegar
Photography by Karen Lowe

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The last time Ash made the trip over from Ireland to our fine and sunny shores it was for the twentieth anniversary of their debut album 1977, and they played that album in its entirety on that tour. Fast forward two-and-a-half years and the trio have a new album in Kablammo! and have a greatest hits set to rival just about any touring act this year.

First up is Dream Rimmy, a very green local act who were billed as ‘shoegaze,’ and who played a head-turning set of trancy, trippy rock that reminds us very much of the ‘90s. There is little talk or interaction from the stage – probably down to nerves – just big hitting drums, two wailing spacey guitars, a groovy bass full of funky lines, and two keyboards lushing it out. Some recurring feedback got to the band so much that frontwoman/keys player Ali Flintoff scrambled under her keyboard, crawling around to adjust plugs. Unconventional, but it seemed to fix the problem. Guitarists Jack Gaby and Lee Napper threw some janglepop in the mix, and the end result is some ultra catchy songs that remind us of Ride, Lush and the like. Dream Rimmy have some big potential – catch them while you can.

ASH hit the stage running with Go! Fight! Win! From the new record and it instantly fits into their Iron Maiden-meets-indie-pop-cool oeuvre. Songwriter Tim Wheeler has always managed to combine crunchy hard rock riffs from his flying V guitar effortlessly with supremely sugary melodies and unforgettable hooks. Looking slick and buttoned up, Wheeler stood next to bassist Mark Hamilton (shaggy & throwing rock shapes) and drummer Rick McMurray (#1 shaved and staunchly resolute) gives you the impression of three complete strangers, rather than a unified band, but musically they are so intuitive to each other they never put a step wrong.

The setlist leans equally heavily on Kablammo! (Cocoon, Let’s Ride, Machinery, Free, Evel Knievel) and 1977 (Girl From Mars, Goldfinger, a brilliant Oh Yeah, Jack Names The Planets, Angel Interceptor, the Ramonesy blast of Kung Fu), with a smattering of extras from the rest of their catalogue: Arcadia from their A-Z Singles project; A Life Less Ordinary from the soundtrack of the movie of the same name; Orpheus from Meltdown; Wildsurf from Nu-Clear Sounds; and the biggest treat of all was a foursome from Free All Angels.

Recorded with ex-guitarist Charlotte Hatherley, this album bounced back from Nu-Clear Sounds’ darkness with arguably the apotheosis of Wheeler’s balance of power and sugar, and Burn Baby Burn, Sometimes, Walking Barefoot and especially Shining Light are instantly unforgettable exercises in edgy melodic rock.

With such delicious fare on offer it’s no surprise that the night zoomed by in a blur of head-shaking, sweaty singalongs, dancing, crowd surfing and euphoric bonhomie.

Set list:
Go! Fight! Win!
Jack Names the Planets
A Life Less Ordinary
Kung Fu
Let’s Ride
Oh Yeah
Evel Knievel
Shining Light
Girl From Mars

Walking Barefoot
Angel Interceptor
Uncle Pat
Burn Baby Burn

Category: Live Reviews, Photo Galleries

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Editor, 100% ROCK MAGAZINE

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