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Live Review : Genesis Owusu in Brisbane




All photos by Lauren Clarke (I: @laurenjaneclarke / W:


Lined up for doors at 7pm prompt were the virgin concert-goers. Unlike those lambs to the slaughter, I hung back at a local watering hole 'til a respectable 8pm. Slithering in two pints and three grams of mushrooms, I was abruptly surrounded by Red Bull promotional girls, handing out what can only be described as sugar based rocket juice in the form of a energy drink cocktail - it tasted as good as it sounds.

The dimly lit venue combined with my newfound appreciation for all things Red Bull, were the perfect combination for the opening act. A rap reggae mixologist known as Gold Fang. High energy, with just enough mids to make you forget that you haven’t said anything for twenty one minutes. The smell of faint weed was in the air throughout his blistering set.

A few sneaky bathroom vape hits later, with a more stately Vodka Pineapple in hand, I was confronted with the second support act. A young kilt-wearing man by the name of Kirin J Callinan. Slinky guitar riffs with an almost dance-like edge to his sound -- think Prince meets Akai keyboard. My musically-challenged friend asked “Is this Genesis?, halfway through his set. “Yes” I replied.

Openers aside, I made a beeline for fresh air outside. Saturday night Valley mall people watching is a whole gig in itself.

Coming back just in time to see the orchestra taking their seats, it finally dawned on me why the young girls were handing out free Red Bull elixir upon entry. Accompanying Genesis tonight was the Red Ball Orchestra.

The orchestra began and on the right of the stage, hovered this illusive character in an all black cape. Microphone in hand, 'The Other Black Dog' opened the set, with four all-black-wearing dancers popping out from under Genesis' cape. The following 70 minutes was full of straight hits, trippy lighting, stage antics and,

of course, that sweet, sweet sugar-heightened Red Bull Orchestra. At one point he did a Freddie Mercury-esque interactive crowd moment, commanding call-and-responses with his hand. Unlike similar attempts have witnessed recently, this one felt right.

Having seen Genesis three times before, the addition of the orchestra was indeed mighty delicious for the ears. The ensemble not only provided a unique angle for the heavily-touring artist, but also somewhat softens what is typically a heavy digital beat presence in his shows.

Personal highlights were ‘Don’t Need You’, ‘Good Times’ and ‘Get Inspired’. The latter of which I danced so hard to, that I had to make a swift exit to the back for some air-coned delights.




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