If there is any doubt about whether the Clowns of Decadence are still relevant after being missing in action for all these years it was quickly erased tonight. Despite the fact that it was a cold, wet, miserable Adelaide night the punters came out en masse. This was a real credit to not only the caliber of the bands playing tonight but also to the people who came out to support local music when they could have quite easily been tucked away at home in front of the fire.
Captain Hellfire and the Wretched Brethren began proceedings with their unique brand of sea shanties. They play an almost Celtic style of music and visually would not have looked out of place on the set of a Jack Sparrow movie. Captain Hellfire and his merry crew entertained the early comers with their swashbuckling tales of misadventure on the high seas. It was hard not to tap your feet to the very unique styling’s of the band and they did a great job warming up the crowd on a cold dreary night. Apart from the obvious pirate attire, they stood out for the fact that drummer Bloodbeard played the entire set standing up. By time they disembarked the stage they had recruited a few more shipmates to their pirate crew.
When The Lizards hit the stage the venue was almost three quarters full. This three piece surf/punk outfit weren’t holding any punches and hit the ground running. Drummer Marty and bass player Stubs laid down a frantic foundation for singer /guitarist Patty to weave in and out of. The pace remained relentless for the duration of the show and at times the music wouldn't have been out of place at an 80's thrash metal show. Patty and Stubs owned the stage and propelled themselves from one side to the other with reckless abandon. The Lizards managed to elicit the first crowd surf of the evening and by midway through the set the lads had whipped a sizeable chunk of the audience into a frenzy. A solid performance that was well received.
When the clock struck 10:30 The Gov was packed solid and it was pretty clear who the crowd were here to see. The Clowns of Decadence are back and judging by the size of the crowd it’s not soon enough.
How do you describe the music? I could not offer a description that would truly do it justice. It is something that if you asked everyone in the room they all would have come up with a different answer. In saying that, the one thing everyone could agree on is whether you had heard their music before or not, entertainment was the big winner tonight. Balloons, glitter, confetti and grease paint were all in abundance as the band lead us on their magical ride.
It was apparent to everyone there that the time away from the limelight had not diminished any of the band’s ability to create a musical and visual kaleidoscope that will ensure they regain their mantle as one of Adelaide’s premier bands.The Clowns Of Decadence invited us on their deranged carousel ride and pushed us off at full speed, leaving everyone in audience hungry for more.
Review by Mike Trandafil
Photos by Melissa Donato. You can see the full album here.