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MUSIC: Live: Spiegeltent, Adelaide Fringe Festival

8 March 2002 - with Shane O'Mara

Date: Mon, 11 Mar 2002 15:06:18 +1030
From: Tim Hayward-Brown
Subject: Fri 8 March - Spiegeltent, Adelaide Fringe Festival

Having missed the Adelaide show at 'The Gov' not long ago (I was not in the country at the time) it was great to see SC at this venue.

The Spiegeltent (for those who don't know it) is this weird old German carnival tent which appears for the second time now at the Adelaide Fringe. As a venue, it's been a feature of many a European festival (including Edinburgh) on and off for about 80 years. It's been to Melbourne too - and SC has also played the venue there. Strange experience to play at the same venue but in different cities I would think. Marlene Dietrich sang 'Falling in love again' on the Spiegel stage in the 1930s...

Incorporated into its structure are wooden booths around the outer, a bar and lots of stained glass and mirrors and stuff. Like being inside a 1920's carousel only with not so many painted horses. And not spinning. Well not for me anyway, I can't speak for others.

SC appeared with Shane O'Mara, both playing acoustic guitars. It was a full house - though some people go to Spiegeltent shows just to see the tent. No really. I overheard one girl telling her friends 'I think he's a singer guitarist or something...' as they all bought $20 tickets.

The set seemed similar to the sort of material reported from gigs in Melbourne and included: Skeleton Key, Love is Mighty Close and New Cosmic Blues, Love Comes Back to Haunt You, Big Room, Wishing Machine, Pissing in the Swimming Pool, She Set Fire to the House etc. Nothing from Senso... Nothing from the Sports years...

Highlight for me was 'Half Light' the sound of which lingered in the back of my mind for hours afterwards. Not too hot for N.Cosmic Blues. Nor Ain't no sunshine - don't know much about the original of this (1970s?) but I have a great version somewhere by Rockmelons (w/- Wendy Matthews?).

SC seemed to have a reasonable time, telling stories etc 'If you want me to shut up, just say so and I will,' he quipped. Nobody did.

They stuffed up one song - forgot words, lost their way, stopped and restarted - but this was fine, human, and strangely endearing.

There was an occasional outburst of raucous crowd noise which didn't seem to phase Stephen or Shane - although it annoyed many of the otherwise quiet audience. And the more I think about it, the noise may have been coming from outside the tent. Everyone inside seemed to enjoy the show. There was an encore of two songs - and the show went for about 90 minutes (not 60 as in the program) and that seemed to suit most people just fine.

As a bonus, after the show you could buy Skeleton Key and get Stay Away from Lightning Girl for free. 'You've got no idea how it hurts me to say that,' he said with a smile.


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