Review: The Preatures, ANU Bar 27th August

Sydney indie rockers The Preatures graced the stage at ANU Bar on Thursday. Despite nearing the end of their 16 date Cruel national tour, there was no sign of fading energy levels. Fresh off their Groovin’ the Moo and Vivid festival trips, the five-piece were cool, calm and collected as they faced the large crowd packing out the Refectory. Crowd warmers were NSW outfit Low Lux, and Brisbane psych-rockers Creases.

Preatures frontwoman Izzy Manifredi exploded on stage, with a repertoire that included high energy antics such as handstands. Whilst Izzy is the face of The Preatures – her visage is the album’s cover art – other band members shared the onstage energy. Lead guitarist Jack Moffit and Izzy shared a chemistry charged stare before Moffit jumps onto drummer Luke Davison’s set. As the band delivered its hits such as the Triple J Hottest 100 top 10 Somebody’s Talking, along with Is This How You Feel?, Cruel, Ordinary and It Gets Better, their crescendos and bridges were matched equally or more by their accumulating sweat.

The Preatures also debuted two new songs recorded in the US. They showed very different sides to the band; the first, Zimmerjam, was an upbeat, funky crowd mover, as would be expected from this energetic mob, whilst the other, Take A Card, was a toned down circumspect number. The vocal talents of guitarist Gideon Bensen are brought to the fore in these tracks, produced by Spoon drummer Jim Eno in his Austin recording studio. The tracks were delivered to the crowd with a promise that a new album was already on the way, though their debut was only released 12 months ago.

The band’s classic rock style permeates not only their music but also their videos and styling. They give more than a nod to their influences by paying tribute to them and Izzy is known for emulating well-known late Divinyls frontwoman Chrissy Amphlett. Covering Boys in Town, as well as Angels smash hit Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again? the crowd replied the song’s lyrics with an impassioned “No Way! Get Fucked! Fuck Off!”

Swathed in rainbow lights at the end of the set, the smiles on their faces are reflected in the crowd. The Preatures’ formula is simple: forget overproduction; deliver some old style Aussie rock n’ roll, with sweat, smiles and pure voices. The Preatures have already earned their stripes by creating some lyrical feel good crowd movers. With a string of hits already in their collection, we can’t wait to see where the next album will take us.