West Coast Highway Cosmic Album Launch, July 31, 2020. MOJOS BAR FREMANTLE
Dom Mariani’s Datura4 released their latest album back in April right on the cusp of the ass falling out of the live music scene around the globe. Since then they’ve been doing what most other musicians on this planet have been doing to fill the void where once playing live stood; live streaming and waiting for the right moment to emerge from exile and isolation to once again bring the boogie to the masses. So this was always going to be a special affair, and the guys certainly gave it everything they had.
Criag Hallsworth’s Magnets Have Souls opened up the night with a set of well crafted tunes. Essentially a power pop trio, their sound could best be described as part Easybeats, part Dinosaur Jr. At least to these ears anyway. Craig has an inherent knack of knocking off a well constructed pop song like ‘Show Me Another Way’ with ease, like brushing a bead of sweat of your brow. So he was in bloody good company tonight with Dom Mariani and Datura 4. He’s a dab hand at a nifty chord progression that not only serves to enhance the melodic slant of the songs but they play to the strength of his voice too. Some nice tight harmonies wouldn’t go astray in some numbers but for a three piece they filled out the sound well.
Datura4 hit the stage with little fanfare and proceeded to lay down some super tight driving blues rock. New album West Coast Highway Cosmic is a little ripper of a record, so seeing a good solid crowd in Mojos celebrating some quality local music was really encouraging.
The swirling Hammond/Kurtzweil intro to the title track kicked off the set in true D4 style before the swampy harp driven blues rock of Wolfman Woogie bought a dirtier darker edge into things. Trolls from the second D4 album was ushered in next and it was great hearing some older songs mixed in amongst their current material
It’s truly does seem that no matter what genre of music Mariani lends his hand to it instantly turns to gold. Be it power pop, surf rock or the heavier blues tinged sounds of this his current project out of god knows how many bands since the heady days of The Stems, Dom and Co still laid down some lean, muscular blues rock that had everyone warmed right through on a chilly Freo Friday night.
Datura4 cover a full range of great rock n roll; from boogie woogie piano spanking blues to dirty swampy rock they pack a serious punch and the live gig starved Freo crowd relished in it in style. Mother Medusa’s riffage and pounding drums highlited once again the bands blend of high energy rock and duelling guitars. With the setlist heavy on songs from the new album there were a smattering of older songs thrown in, just because each album they’ve released since 2016 has been absolutely killer. ‘Black Dog Keep Running’ from the bands previous release ‘Blessed Is The Boogie’ dialled straight into Deep Purple territory with its riff and Hammond combo. ‘Get Out’s’ punchy chords tailed out the latter part of the set before ‘Ooh Poo Pah Doo‘ closed out the early show with some
A quick note about having an early and late show due to restrictions on punters during these times is a GREAT IDEA. Sure it means a band playing two sets a night but back in the early days of rock n roll in small clubs that’s how it was done.
On a personal note this reviewer has been going to see Dom in many of his bands since his late teens and has never gone away from a show disappointed. Ever. True Australian rock royalty is alive and well and living in Perth Western Australia.
Blessed be the boogie? You’re god damned right.