Thanks to Suzanne Bunker for the following review...
The 80’s. When hairstyles were big, shoulder pads and leather pants were fashionable, the live music scene in Australia was very much alive and, as Scott Carne pointed out, a video clip could cost more to make than the album!
Thankfully, there weren’t any big hairstyles or shoulder pads at the Shoppingtown Hotel on Friday. There was, however, at least one small group of ladies dressed in their Madonna inspired 80’s outfits. But, for the predominantly female audience, the night was about the music and a glimpse at some of their 80’s pop idols.
The Absolutely 80’s show is an entertaining night out featuring Brian Mannix (Uncanny X Men), Scott Carne (Kids in the Kitchen), Paul Gray (Wa Wa Nee) and Sean Kelly (The Models). As you would expect, the men do sing their most popular 80’s hits but there are also some great versions of other songs we loved to listen to in the 80’s, of which the best were ‘Jump’ (Van Halen) sung by Brian, ‘Rock the Casbah’ (The Clash) sung by Sean, ‘Don’t Change’ (Inxs) and ‘Rain’ (Dragon) both sung by all four in the encore.
Of the four 80’s idols, Brian was the one most stuck in the 80’s with his tight jeans, crude ripped tee-shirts, boa feathers, his cheeky smile and poses and his inability to keep still. He looked like he was still on the set of Countdown. Actually, so did the crowd on many occasions with their arms swaying in the air in that very Countdown sort of way!
It was Sean Kelly that attracted me to the show. The Models were one of the bands I followed in the 80’s and I was very curious to see how Sean fitted into this show. When I think back to the 80’s, Sean was the cool one in the cool band, whilst the other three were the commercial pop sensations. I am pleased to say, Sean was still the cool one.
All four men got great responses to their sets but the best responses were when all four performed together and, in particular, when they performed Dragon’s great 80’s hit, ‘Rain’. I don’t believe there was a single person in the audience who was not singing along to this song. It was like being part of a world record Karaoke attempt.
Absolutely 80’s. As Molly would say, ‘do yourself a favour’. Go along to the show, step back in time, have a laugh at Brian’s antics and jokes, revisit Paul’s keytar, but most of all, be part of a great 80’s sing-along.
Review by: Suzanne Bunker