TUNES OF HEAL­ING

Saskwatch are tak­ing a walk on the emo­tional side with their lat­est al­bum Nose Dive, which they’ll present on the Gold Coast this weekend

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - LIVE & LOUD - AN­NIKA PRIEST

When Saskwatch first lugged their brass and keys down to Flin­ders St sta­tion on a Fri­day af­ter­noon, they were just Vic­to­rian Col­lege of the Arts stu­dents hop­ing to catch the ears of passers-by and make some beer money busk­ing cov­ers.

Five years on and they’ve flour­ished in the heart of Mel­bourne’s soul re­vival, com­mand­ing the dark, di­vey depths of Cherry Bar, hi­jack­ing the Ed­in­burgh Fes­ti­val and flood­ing vibes into people’s flail­ing limbs at Glas­ton­bury.

Those feel-good vibes have pow­ered the Mel­bourne funk/soul out­fit through count­less fes­ti­vals and sup­ports for the likes of Earth, Wind and Fire and Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, but ex­pe­ri­ence and heart­break have tem­pered their sec­ond al­bum to cre­ate a ride with a lot more highs and lows.

It was trum­peter-song­writer Liam McGorry’s breakup last year with his girl­friend around the time Nose Dive was writ­ten that has fed into gor­geous laments such as tracks You Left Me To Die and Call Your Name.

“Mu­sic’s a great healer,” says McGorry, son of ac­claimed psy­chi­a­trist Pro­fes­sor Patrick McGorry.

Recorded with Lach­lan “Ma­goo” Goold at his Ap­ple­wood Lane Stu­dios in ru­ral Queens­land, Nose Dive feels more like an al­bum and “less a bunch of songs”, says McGorry.

“I think the first al­bum’s a bit light. I love it but I think it’s great this al­bum’s got a bit more shade, a bit more def­i­ni­tion.”

The lo­gis­tics of do­ing any­thing with a nine-piece band are a chal­lenge – tour­ing for years has meant es­chew­ing pri­vacy with ev­ery­one crammed into two or three ho­tel/mo­tel rooms, and song­writ­ing can “get very busy”.

“I think there are a few dif­fer­ent sit­u­a­tions. People come to the fore. It’s great to have many people for that sort of rea­son, there’s al­ways some­one with a dif­fer­ent idea, some­one to make the peace,” he says.

“Gen­er­ally I bring in a song and the rest of the band mull on it, make their own anal­y­sis and add things, take things away, work­shop it for a bit and road-test it at the live show.”

Fresh from play­ing the By­ron Bay Blues­fest, the nine­piece soul­sters will stage their first Gold Coast gig at Bond Univer­sity on Sun­day.

The free Live at Bond con­cert will be the grand fi­nale of Bond’s 25th an­niver­sary fes­tiv­i­ties, wrap­ping up a week­long pro­gram of events. Saskwatch play Live at Bond, ADCO Am­phithe­atre, Sun­day.

Nine-piece Mel­bourne out­fit Saskwatch have gar­nered ac­claim for their soul­ful work and this weekend will spread their vibes at Bond Univer­sity.

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