banner ad
banner ad
banner ad

LIVE: Jaime Page’s Dark Universe, Perth – 28 Apr 2018

| 7 May 2018 | Reply

LIVE: Jaime Page’s Dark Universe, Perth – 28 Apr 2018
with Darkyra and Jackson Koke
Badlands Bar, Perth – Saturday, 28th April, 2018
Review & Photography by Peter Gardner

Jaime Page is a phenomenon: a brilliant rock guitarist with skills as good, if not greater than, most of her contemporaries. Her CV includes recording with Cozy Powell and writing for Brian May. As a brilliant songwriter she bares her soul documenting a journey from the darkest times of her life through to rebirth.

Launching the excellent new release, Into the Black (Click here to read our review) Dark Universe show they are a world class act and deserving of a much larger audience. Tonight’s performance would not have been lacking if played on the stages of the worlds concert arenas.

Accompanying her live are long standing bandmates Donna Greene, whose powerful vocals breathe life into the songs, virtuoso multi instrumentalist Craig Skelton, restraining himself to just his bass guitar tonight, and drummer Mike Burn, beating his kit with such ferocity you would think he was Ragnar Lothbrook taking revenge on those who threatened his family.

Those who trickled in early, drinks in hand, were treated to the wonderful voice of Gina Bafile, aka Darkyra, performing for the first time in two and a half years, now as a duo with keyboards from Kim Siragusa. Gina’s rich intoxicating vocals instill real strength and emotion into her folk rock ballads, enthralling the lucky few in attendance.

After a short break, Badlands was filled with the amazing cross section of citizenry who make up the faithful audience for Dark Universe. Taking the stage Donna welcomes everyone to the Into the Black CD launch as Jaime’s guitar takes flight with the intro solo of Seventh Heaven, the album opener. Joined by the solid rhythm section of Mike and Craig, Donna’s vocals soar, as for the next hour the band power through the symphonic progressive rock of the Into the Black album in its entirety.

The chemistry of the band on stage is obvious, the quartet have been playing together for a long time and perform as a tight and faultless unit. They can often be found on the Perth circuit, and as many bands need to do to make a living, play the local pubs and clubs with cover sets. If you can catch them in one of their guises as True Spirit, or in their Led Zep incarnation as Houses of the Holy, do yourself a favour and go and see them for a great night out. However, in their rightful form as Dark Universe, playing their original music, they shine brightest.

It is difficult to choose a standout track from the night. Highlights included Shattered – performed on stage regularly over the last couple of years, it is great to hear it in its final form now it has been finally laid down in the studio. Donna did a fantastic job with Falling in a Dream, and Craig gurned his way through the heavy riff of God Help The Rest Of Us (if you look up “bass face” in the dictionary if comes up with a photo of Craig…) but personally, the album closer, Alone At The End Of The World was the high point of the set, with brilliant slide guitar work from Jaime as the band brought the show to a climax. I just stood there transfixed watching a master of her craft showing us all how it is done.

After a short break, the band retook the stage to a huge cheer for the obligatory encores. Deepest Black and XXX27 from the previous EP, give way to Deconstruct, a new track from the already-in-the-works next album.

So often commercial success is based more on luck than talent, and there are many bands who get the break with far less to offer than Dark Universe. This band is at the top of their game, and their work is deserving of a much wider audience. Tonight’s performance was an object lesson in what can be achieved when talent and passion combine.

To finish the evening local lads Jackson Koke were the entertainment for the after party. At first glance, with tracks titled Hot Blooded Bitch, Lust For The Devil and Pole Dancer, I almost wondered if this was going to be a Spinal Tap-esque cliché, but these lads can really play.

Singer Karl “Karlifornia” Infirri – also one of 100% ROCK’s talented review team – has a great voice and guitarist Nathan Barona showed his skill effortlessly. The songwriting belies the superficial track titles and the sound has a southern rock feel to it. Jackson Koke are accomplished musicians, and I look forward to their upcoming album Hellevator Music (they need to work on those titles!). The band plays the Bassendean Hotel on 1st June and is well worth checking out.

Category: Live Reviews, Photo Galleries

About the Author ()

Editor, 100% ROCK MAGAZINE

Leave a Reply

Please verify you\'re a real person: * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

banner ad
banner ad