Photo credits Sheldon Ang
“Last year we had to ask our mates to come to our gigs, because we were afraid that no one would show up” – says the lead vocalist and guitarist Tyler Fisher.
Less than twelve months later – even in 2020, Coterie have gathered catapulted-momentum, even sharing the stage as supporting act with the likes of Missy Higgins at Kings Park before the Covid succumbing the industry onto its knees.
If it wasn’t for the pandemic, the quartet of brothers would have toured across Australia performing in sold-out shows in their Salvation Tour. Thus, there was an air of humility among the crowd tonight under the roof of Freo Social, showcasing a spectrum of dazzling lighting on stage.
And just barely a year since their debut release on Spotify, the band have seen their small catalogue amassing close to two million streams, thanks to their single Where We Began. Hearing them live tonight was a humbling and somewhat spiritual experience.
Tyler’s vocal range is impeccable – from the lows in verse 1 and pre-chorus to the high falsettos in the chorus “Oh where did we go so wrong? And how did we lose our way?” – which sounds even better, live.
A heartfelt and heartbreaking track is never an easy feat on the live stage, but Tyler oozed honesty and narrated with sincerity, with his brothers Brandford (Bass), Joshua (Piano) and Conrad (lead guitar) forming the pillars of Coterie.
Salvation is another track that has cemented the Perth band onto the Australian music map, a track about needing a hand…and sometimes “life sux…this song is essentially us communicating and relating to the part of humanity…” The performance has the feel of a preacher, although the track has no religious connotation.
The night left us with a dreamy after taste, with the chorus of Where We Began echoing in our heads long after. There were fans that sang along – mainly females.
A patron by the name of Paul D said the next day, “My first time seeing Coterie, instant right fan here” – not bad considering he has not heard of the band prior to the performance. For this writer, there’s something about the superstar George Ezra in Tyler – and that is meant to be a complement.
But the night wasn’t all about Coterie. The penultimate act by Teischa was enigmatically exothermic. As the room was legally filled with hypnotised fans, the fans were soaked in the sonic translucence of her dreamy, ballads with seductive beats.
The favourites were probably Before and Hotel Pool before closing with Midnight Hour. Born in Fremantle, Teischa was on home ground, and contagiously infecting those on the dance floor. Great performances are manifested from the inside, where sometimes sincerity ticks above the technical performance itself – and there was no doubt the singer – who has enjoyed millions of streams – was the catalyst of the night before the main act.
Afterall, Teischa has performed in the outer reaches of the world in places like Splendour in the Grass and Primavera Barcelona. And if this ballad boy may be candid, it was Teischa that he came to witness. And if Sade and Alicia Keys were to produce a sonic offspring, it’d be something similar to Teischa’s performance of the night, a smooth operator with the contemporary beat.
Second in tonight’s lineup was Perth trio Flossy. They have been regulars lately in the local scene, most recently as a supporting act for the legendary Gyroscope. Known for their energetic live shows, Sinead Clark, Lauren and Charlie did not disappoint.
The band sparked their set with Being Alone – filled with catchy riffs from end to end, flirting along the lines of indie rock and alternative rock – although leaning towards the latter. It was not all about the hair raising sonics. Their latest single Carry On was more of a subdued transition, giving us a breather after a fiery performance.
The night was sparked by solo artist San Solis, who has performed with Teischa’s touring band. Classified as an indie-pop artist, the singer has more groove in her style to be classified as an “indie pop” artist especially after the performance of Rose Coloured Glasses, the kind that floats the audience and into a late-night groove for a chilled 70’s Motown delicacy.
The 4-band/artist line-up was an eclectic mix of culture and music diversity – and are every bit Fremantle. From alternative rock to ballad to a gospel-like choir backed by the crowd, it was a night of pleasantries and surprises, and for many – a (re)discovery of local artistries.