Seeker Lover Keeper @ The Astor Theatre (28/07/11)
The porcelain Sarah Blasko, delightfully sarcastic Holly Throsby and quietly sweet Sally Seltmann follow in the footsteps of the Basement Birds make this year’s Australian supergroup. Seeker Lover Keeper combines talents to create something new, eclectic and beautiful.
Supporting Seeker Lover Keeper is Kiwi babe Tiny Ruins (Hollie Fullbrook) who has built up quite a following while on tour with Seeker Lover Keeper. Not one copy of her new album Some Were Meant for Sea was left at the merch table. And why wouldn’t they sell like umbrellas on a rainy day? Fullbrook is gifted with a voice beyond her years and her style lies somewhere near Laura Marling, some charming banter and poetic lyrics woven into a simple melody on an acoustic guitar. Punters were impressed with her performance and cheered loudly as Fullbrook made her exit.
The seating plan at The Astor Theatre meant that punters could avoid fatigue and direct all their attention to the performance without anyone’s head skewing their view. Blasko led the first part of the night with Bring me Back and Light up my Lights, reclining into her signature sways and theatrical hand gestures. On my Own was drearily heartfelt; Seltmann’s smooth, breathy vocals carried the mood perfectly.
It’s clear these women were born to sing together; the chilling harmonies, love and loss themed songs and a sisterlike fondness for each other. They joke that this band is also a self-help group and promote their domestic merchandise goodies like tea towels and t-shirts designed to make fans look like proud SLK employees. After the slightly awkward banter, it’s finally Throsby’s turn in the spotlight as she leads Even Though I am a Woman. This one song sums their whole mission, to tell tales of seeking love and learning how to keep it.
Coming back for a strong encore, the ladies pull out all the cover songs: a jazz version of Throsby’s We’re Good People so why Don’t we Show It? sung by Blasko followed by Seltmann’s I’m the Drunk and You’re the Star covered by Throsby. Completing the round is Blasko’s We Won’t Run, but unfortunately Seltmann falls short of the original with her limited vocal range and lack of command over the lyrics.
For a redeeming finale, the ladies picked up an acoustic guitar each and sprinkled some country twang on to Stevie Nicks Wild Heart. Throsby fumbled on the opening notes and took a while to start up again, the squeaky clean perfection over the course of the evening made the moment’s slip-up strangely hilarious to some fans.
Although supergroups portray an even distribution of glory, it’s obvious who shines brightest and who’s just there for decoration.