All at once sexy, grungy and full of soul, Kingswood brought their ‘After Hours, Close to Dawn’ tour to Perth for one last show over the weekend. For their final night, the Melbourne boys pulled in the crowd for the ultimate party as they explored the past, the present and what it really means to be musicians.
It was Tassie singer-songwriter Maddy Jane that opened the night at Amplifier Capitol, and while the venue started out relatively empty punters quickly crept in. With captivating vocals and lyrics, both filled with Aussie character, Maddy Jane brought the indie pop sound that got the audience hyped.
Brisbane rockers WAAX were up next, their angsty, post punk vibes transforming the space instantly. Front woman Marie owned the stage and expressed the bands excitement at finally making it to Perth, and their relentless energy was soon reciprocated.
With the crowd well and truly warmed up, Kingswood started the night with songs off their new album and demonstrated early on the fusion of styles the band had experimented with this time round. From slow keys, to soaring Queen-inspired harmonies, to old school rock, the audiences’ attention was instantly captured.
It was with a call for the crowd to sing along that Kingswood launched into the twinkling, falsettos and blues baseline of their most recent hit Golden. “Keeping it sexy”, Belle and Rebel Babe followed, getting everyone dancing to an eclectic mix of percussion and RnB grooves.
Front men Fergus and Alex regularly switched from lead vocals, keys and guitar between them, mixing up the vibe for various songs and keeping the crowd engaged. With the audience demographic wide ranging to say the least, the room was filled with old and new fans all equally hooked on the band’s persona and evolving sound.
Almost immediately I was waiting for the ladies on backing vocals to be given an introduction, and for their sleek supporting melodies to get the recognition they deserved. Eventually the band “thanked the internet” for finding them, and each got a chance to show their talents and gain the full admiration of everyone in the room. It wasn’t until the second half of the 20-plus-song set—no complaints from the crowd here— that Kingswood busted out favourites from their EP and first album. I Can Feel That You Don’t Love Me and Ohio both prompted passionate extended instrumentals and huge sing-alongs. Rounding out with the rock sound the band were formerly known for, it was clear a lot of thought went into the show’s arrangement. The night brought the crowd up just as seamlessly as it made us stand still in awe.
The set of course ended with the song that recently brought Kingswood back on to the scene, and also scored them a place in last years Hottest 100. Creepin’s soulful, moody guitar and catchy chorus had the crowd singing at the top of their lungs. It also made for an introduction as the supporting acts and their bands were brought back on stage to take a final bow, and they were applauded for their part in the tour.
Whether it be chunky guitar riffs or silky, smooth sounds (with the hair to match), the ‘After Hours, Close to Dawn’ tour showcased the bands ability to break down genre barriers as they experimented, grew and felt through a mix styles. Still recognisable as Kingswood in whatever shape their music takes, the boys proved they can go in any direction and still get big love from a growing fan base and put on an awesome show.
-Photos by Castaway Photography