Friday, June 15, 2007

Paul Hicks CD Launch and SPECTRUM

Paul Hicks (right) performing at Northcote Social Club

It being the first time I had seen Paul perform live, I was impressed. He had his new band to accompany him, which enhanced the performance no end. Paul has a very pleasant singing voice. It is warm and sweet is very appealing. His original songs are very good, having a local flavour in many instances. Paul lives in the country these days so a lot of the songs are about that region in northern Victoria where he lives. I am familiar with the region as I spent my high school years in the town of Wangaratta. His music encompasses roots, rock, country and folk. He has now released two CDs; his first “Kettle of Fish” came out in early 2005 and “Food for the Journey” is hot off the presses. Check out Paul’s My Space page to listen to some of his songs. I hope to write a more comprehensive review for the Nu Country website. I’ll post the link when it’s online.

SPECTRUM at Basement Discs

from L to R, Bill Putt, Peter Robertson and Mick Rudd

A complete change of pace from last night’s show was the lunchtime performance of old Melbourne pub rockers, Spectrum. They have been around from the year dot as far as the history Australian music is concerned. I remember seeing them way back in the 60s and 70s in one or other of their incarnations, be it Spectrum or Ariel.

The occasion for their In Store was the re-issue of the record “Spectrum Part One” on CD, which naturally they drew upon in their performance at Basement Discs this afternoon. It included the band's most popular song “I’ll Be Gone” which everyone, in Australia at least, knows by heart.

It was a wonderful performance - psychedelic rock with quirky lyrics sung by Mike Rudd in his distinctive voice. There were four in the band today, Mike Rudd, Bill Putt, Peter “Robbo” Robertson and a keyboard player whose name I can’t, at the moment, recall. The music was great to hear – live – from a few feet away. There was quite a crowd there. It was an ideal way to spend a chilly lunchtime in Melbourne and all were very appreciative of the rare opportunity to see a legendary band perform for free.

Mike & Bill have a very entertaining, though oddly constructed, website, maintained by Mike. You can find it here.


chiefbiscuit said...

Thanks for the link. Paul Hick's voice puts me in mind of Tom Rush for some reason - especially Rush's 'Driving Wheel' song.

Anne S said...

CB: Glad you enjoyed his voice. I can't remember what Tom Rush sounds like - must have a listen to him some time.

Jan said...

Do you play any instruments yourself?
I learned piano as a child and it's the old story....I wish I'd kept up with it!

Anne S said...

Jan: No I don't play an instrument. I too learned piano when I was a child. It was the sort of thing children were expected to do in those days. I also learned the recorder which I kept up longer. My piano lessons were only for a short time, when I was at boarding school.

My partner B plays guitar and has played in many bands and ensembles from his teenage years. He no longer plays in public, just at home. He collects guitars and now has five of them. He is a good guitarist and some of his recent acquisitions, the Martin and the Gibson acoustic guitars have a truly lovely sound.