CALEXICO with WANDERERS, the Gov, Adelaide
Like Arcade Fire but with trumpets
I’ll be honest; I hadn’t heard of the band Calexico, despite their touring with Arcade Fire in 2010- but we were keen to hear local favourites Wanderers support them in “the world’s best music venue”, the Governor Hindmarsh Hotel in Adelaide. Known to locals simply as the Gov, the main performance area hosts a wide stage (just as well for the seven Calexicans) and offers excellent access to be up close to the performers. It also has a semi-outdoors section, brilliant for warm summer evenings. This one was hot- Arizona hot- a fitting welcome for the Tucson based seven piece named (topically these days) after a US-Mexico border town. An intoxicating cocktail of alternative rock, Tex-Mex tejano, country and mariachi, all infused with Latin rhythms and the occasional Spanish lyrics made for a night of fiesta- washed down with beer and tequila. I don’t know the band’s material well yet, but audience reaction attested to the favourites.
Do you want to hear about what’s going on in America?
A groan from the audience indicated ‘no, we want to dance,’ and so we did through to the set’s finale, a frenetic flamenco interpretation of Love’s 1960 psychedelic classic Alone Again Or. Chants of ‘Mas, mas, mas!’ were rewarded with a five song encore set and more dancing.
Earlier Adelaide outfit Wand
erers, performing as a three piece, played a robust set of their signature blues-soul featuring the virtuosity of band leader Dusty Stephenson. Unusually Wanderers’ set included two covers requested by the main band, gaining praise and a promise from Calexico frontman Joey Burns. Wanderers to tour America? We’ll watch this space.