GIG REVIEW: Hobo Magic + Supports, Lefty’s Old Town Music Hall, Brisbane, 26/04/2019

It was with a slightly heavy heart that I made my way into one of my favourite Brisbane live music venues, Lefty’s Old Time Music Hall last night to catch the heavy groove, psychedelic rock legends that are, Hobo Magic. This was to be their last show in Brisbane before they set off over the seas to take up residence in Europe to see a whole new chapter in their lives. For local fans it was a bittersweet moment as we are both excited for them but sad to see them go.

Lefty’s was the perfect choice of venue for the show. If you have not been to Lefty’s it’s best described as stated on their Facebook page as a ‘lavish honky-tonk saloon meets bordello’, from the moment you walk in, you are taken to another time, another place, another vibe. With the best apple whiskeys around and the loveliest interior including velvet drapes, dark leather, old paintings and more, it really sets the scene for a night of rocking live music.

Getting there a tad late after a bit of a rough day I was so ready for an apple whiskey and some top shelf live performances from the perfectly chosen line up. I walked in to hear and see Brisbane two piece, Chassm on stage. These guys are relatively new as this act but both members, Storm Mahan and Elijah Lee have been doing their thing with music for some time which is clear to see. They really impressed me last night; the perfect opener. With a sound reminiscent of early experimental Pink Floyd mixed with an almost 90’s grunge sound at times, I really dig what these guys are doing. The guys are also supporting Bongzilla and The Black Swamp at Crowbar on May 17th and I already can’t wait to see them again.

Next up one of my favourite local groove rock bands, Concrete Palms took to the stage. This three piece psychedelic power force bring so much energy and pure groove in their performance, no matter where they play. Even Lefty’s small stage seemed bigger last night with Alex Kosenko, Zane Nichol and Rangi White up there pelting out their tunes. This gig was the last show for their ‘Embers Single Tour’ and also, as we all found out last night, is sadly the last performance with bass player, Zane Nichol. Nichol announced he was leaving the band after last night’s gig to an audience of saddened fans. Although, this only made the performance even more special and there is no doubt Kosenko and White will find another amazing bass player to join the band and that we will continue to see Nichol perform with his other band who are equally as brilliant, Big Whoops.

Brisbane’s heavy psych lords, Zong were up next. Heavy on the deep bass lines that pump through your chest delivered by Michael Grinstead with Henry Bennett playing barefoot on the drums with a clear passion and enjoyment in what he is doing and Adam Anderson with his echoing guitar and all the riffs, this instrumental three piece know how to entrance listeners and those watching with the music and vibe they create on the stage. There is something about their live performance’s that makes me feel earthy, natural, lost in a natural high of flowing tunes and riffs that kind of float you on a cloud of musical goodness.

And finally, the magic hit the stage. Hobo Magic. How can words even come close to explaining how so completely amazing these guys really are? We are losing one of our best bands and Europe is gaining some absolute musical gold in our Hobo Magic. But really, they are still ours and always will be. Fans packed out Lefty’s to show their support, love and appreciation for the guys, with the line up to get back into Lefty’s down the street. The front of the stage, surrounding stairs and the top level all packed full. The mosh got a little intense at times with crowd surfing and pushing going on. Mostly this is always just a good time but there were a few moments where people copped it a bit hard last night, the level of excitement on an all time high.

Every single time I see Hobo play and every time I have been fortunate to review them I am almost at a loss for words that describe the level of talent and the way the three of them just seem to hold their fans and all those watching in a warm embrace of groove rock. Playing an hour long set that I am pretty sure went for even longer, they had everyone in the room with all eyes on them, singing along, lapping up every moment, knowing it would be the last time we will see them in Brisbane for a while. The Hobo trio, Connor Mitchell (guitar and vocals), Jake ‘Greasy’ Bennett (bass) and Luke Hanson (drums) delivered their usual high quality, seemingly faultless set and left everyone with that fuzzy after-gig feeling that leaves a slight ringing in your ears and a fullness in your heart that all good live music performances give.

The guys continue their ‘Hooroo Tour’ tonight at Solbar on the Sunshine Coast and tomorrow night at Mo’s Desert Clubhouse on the Gold Coast with thanks to Beats Cartel.

GC Live would like to wish Hobo Magic all the very best on their new venture.

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