Jan 16, 2016

Dirty Three @ State Theatre

There is little doubt in my mind that Dirty Three are one of the greatest bands that this country has ever produced. Perhaps the greatest. They are unique. A mad man with electric charisma leading the way with a violin. For 26 years they have ruled. Dazzled. Stunned. Friday night at the State Theatre was the latest time that I have seen them live, one of many over the years. They never let me down. Or anyone else I would think. Greatness they are and greatness they gave.

They were here as part of Sydney Festival and for close to two hours they assailed us with their stellar music. Their fluidity as an ensemble is such that they appear always in sync, even if they don't play as much together as they used to. Each movement travels among the trio, producing an electricity that is truly tangible. Mick Turner is the quiet achiever of the group, supplying the backbone of guitar. Jim White possesses the drum kit like few other. His range is off the charts, so subtle and yet so powerful. Then there is Warren Ellis. The man is truly a wonder. His movements, his violin playing, his everything. His stories are loopy, engaging, funny and quite often profound. He regales us with wit about drug taking in the 90s, meeting Christy Moore at a festival in Cork and the legitimacy of Rupert Murdoch's latest engagement. Then there is the music. Loud, epic, frenetic, gentle, subtle, moving. All great. But maybe the best was the sheer epicness of "Some Summers They Drop Like Flys". For me I am truly grateful that Dirty Three exist.

Set List
1000 Miles
Some Summers They Drop Like Flys
Sea Above, Sky Below
Indian Love Song
Everything's Fucked
Authentic Celestial Music
Lullaby for Christie
The Zither Player
Sue's Last Ride


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