A writer and blogger recently moved to Brisbane, formerly Melbourne with a passion for good food, drink and live entertainment.
Check my Instagram feed @DegustationDestination
Published July 14th 2014
Fronted by singer/songwriter Tammy Ari, local Melbourne act Neon Georgie at first glance are a rather perplexing band. Offering up and eclectic mix of 80's electronica fueled with modern pop and funk, putting them into a well defined genre proves particularly difficult, but this is part of their appeal. Their debut EP, Rockamotor, is full of cheesy synth lines, crooning vocals and repeating base melody, giving the distinct impression of an Amiga-500 fighting it's way back into the modern age.
After a two year absence from the gigging scene, the band put on their "Reload Show" at Melbourne's Swanston Street venue, The Hi-Fi on Thursday the 10th of July, 2014. Seeing the band live though, you are left with a completely different impression than their CD. Unlike many electronic acts around, this group offers up a full band experience and a very different, almost funk vibe when performing live, with certain songs off the EP working much better in a live setting making them an act that are well worth keeping an eye on.
Opening up with carefully chosen covers of One More Time by Daft Punk and Happy by Pharrell Williams, the audience were brought up to speed before Neon Georgie began bashing out their own songs, together with the appearance of the almighty keytar. The decent sized crowd were then treated to two of the bands catchier tunes in Neon Lover and Rockamotor, bearing only a passing resemblance of the CD tracks and almost covers of their own tracks. A brief nod to one of Tammy's personal influences saw an excellently worked cover of Chromeo's song Hot Mess, after which they continued to showcase their own catalgue.
Belting out angst filled Cell, and moving on into Try and Tame the Impossible, the band then began to run through two unrecorded songs (Someone Else's Life and New Momentum) which again proved the versatility in songwriting of Tammy. After finishing out their own songs with Stairway the show ended as a touching tribute to Tammy's Fathers favourite song, a cover of Walking on a Dream by Empire of the Sun. Neon Georgie were followed by Mose and the Family, an urban hip-hop mix, although sadly the majority of the crowd had left by the time they came on. Support and warm up for both acts came in the form of DJ Smudj and while never an easy gig filling in during sound-checks, the monotone beats and rhythms provided did nothing to really get the crowd going, nor to keep them entertained to stick around for the second band.
While a unique experience was a given, the band was particularly impressive, showcasing tight backing and nailing the tunes perfectly. The main disappointment for the night though was actually some of the vocals. Moments of normal singing were fine but the higher notes and louder parts were not done any favours from the acoustics of the building. There was a distinct impression that some tweaking on the equalizer settings could have softened some of the slightly high pitched notes that seemed to resonate through the room. That being said, take nothing away from Tammy and her song writing ability, nor the musical talent on show from everyone on the stage. This was a great group and have so much potential should they continue to develop and become more comfortable with the performance side of putting on a show. It will be worth keeping and eye on how they continue to progress and future record releases will be certainly worth a listen.
Thank you to Neon Georgie, The Hi-Fi and Weekend Notes for the invite to this show and the CD of the Rockamotor EP which is now making its way onto my iTunes collection.