Weddings, Parties, Anything ‘A Long Time Between Drinks’
DVD/CD Review by John Williams
This compilation would be a must purchase for fans of this popular (in the 80’s and 90’s and now re-formed) band. It is a record of their comeback concert in 2006 at Queenscliff Music Festival after they’d been retired for eight years. I have to say the rest did them the world of good as their performance is lively and exciting. This band is legendary having won ARIAs in 1988 for Best New Talent, 1988 for Best Indigenous Release ‘The Roaring Days’,1989 for Best Indigenous Release ‘The Big Don’t Argue’ and 1993 Song of the Year ‘Father’s Day’.
The current line-up is Mick Thomas (vocals, guitar and mandolin, Mark Wallace (Piano accordion, keyboards, vocals), Paul Thomas (guitar and pedal steel), Michael Barclay (Drums, Vocals), Stephen O’Prey (Bass guitar, guitar and vocals) and Jen Anderson (violin, mandolin, guitar and vocals). People who have seen The Sentimental Bloke revival would have heard Jen’s work as she wrote the accompanying soundtrack. It was a highlight of the 2008 National Folk Festival.
Any younger readers who have not seen the band perform would also be well advised to purchase this set. Weddings, Parties, Anything has a unique sound but if you like the Pogues (WPA toured Australia with them in the 90’s), Borderers, Ploughboys or Claymore you’ll love this band.
You get the full 2006 Queenscliff performance on DVD complete with encores, which gives you seventeen songs all together. (The accompanying CD is a live recording of the same concert.) On the DVD you also get a short movie called ‘Roaring Days’ which features six of the band’s songs. To add to the value you get six film clips the band made in the eighties and nineties as well. As you can see you sure get your money’s worth.
I had a number of favorite tracks but the ones I liked best were ‘The Roaring Days’ (Henry Lawson), ‘Sergeant Small’ (A banned Tex Morton track) and the traditional ‘Streets of Forbes’ all Australian classics. Other favorites were Mick Thomas’s composition ‘A Tale They Won’t Believe’ about Alexander Pierce the Tasmanian cannibal and ‘Ticket in Tatts’ with its audience participation. ‘Barrat’s Privateers’ is another great track which is the lead song on the DVD. And there are heaps more!
I could go on and on about this DVD/CD by a great band but space is limited. Let me just finish by recommending it highly. You won’t be disappointed if you purchase it.