I knew tonight was going to provide me with a couple of great interest points for my blog via gig reviews and having studied the billing I determined to look at Night Train in earnest as they were going to cover two iconic Australian rock bands from two distinctly different era’s …could they pull it off?
Initial research led me to Night Train’s Web page where they describe themselves as “Genuine fans of Australia’s infamous pub-rock bands” (https://nighttrain.info/) That being squared away in my mind I knew exactly what I was looking for from them to add to my experience on the night and did they?….Read on…
The boys took the stage and we were straight into an Angels set. The energy vibrant and fitting of pub rock and the vocals strong and engaging. Great start to the night…and it didn’t stop!
Night Train delivered a consistent and engaging set – so much so that it wasn’t hard to incite audience participation – most notably in that all time classic “Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again”. This was a role shared across the group which was a pleasant change to the norm of being left to the lead to engage punters.
Lead vocals were well supported by backing vocals and well balanced across the group. The animated movements of the lead vocalist adding to the presence of some great respectful covers.
The set list for the night:- Take A Longline, No Exit, No Secrets, Shadow Boxer, Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again, Marseilles.
Instrumentally each member came into their own with some great simple yet effective techniques employed on the guitars and solo moments holding attention and attracting applause in appreciation. Percussion was restrained where need be and accentuated in the same manner…good strong clean beats!!
Punter perception…Well, no shortage of wannabe stars made tonight!! Singing, dancing, drink spilling…lol…all the things that make Pub Rock gigs great. In my mind, the signature of success from a great cover band is the combination of all these elements evident among the fans and well all I can add is Night Train – you done good boys!!!
A short interlude whilst resting the vocals, re-hydrating and having a costume change and Night Train were back with their Powderfinger Set.
I felt this set was delivered in a somewhat more laid back approach and I can understand that given the two bands being honoured tonight.
Again full of the big hits as you would expect:- D.A.F, On My Mind, Passenger, Love Your Way, Stumblin’, Pick You Up and These Days the set continued without interruption to the hype installed from the previous set.
We were treated to the musical prowess of the artists on stage as individuals, a congealed group, vocalists and experienced musicians.
It didn’t matter to the punters, the change in delivery, there were still a lot of obvious Powderfinger fans or otherwise crying out for more glory from Night Train.
My own evaluation of my experience:-
For me I felt the Powderfinger set was a bit weaker than The Angels set but really if you asked me for a reason why I’d be splitting hairs. Whilst I am a fan of both bands I did have my ‘Hey Day’s’ in The Angels era and perhaps I naturally leaned toward this angle. I think Night Train did themselves proud and provided me with a great opportunity to relive some memories from the past and enjoy them all over again! They are a strong capable group and as a cover band were worth my time in investigating them further….Value for money in my books!!!
So if your in the Canberra area…keep an eye out for Night Train gigs (https://www.facebook.com/NightTrainAus/) and make sure you catch one – you won’t be disappointed!!
During my research to find out more about Night Train I was directed to their Bandcamp page. Night Train released an album in 2015 called MK-VI and it appears to be an album of original tracks…I’m actually loving this side of Night Train more than the covers – I think it’s worth checking out for both current and soon to be fans – find it here….. https://nighttrainaus.bandcamp.com/music