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Petanque, Burgers Of Beef, 6s and 7s, Lil Leonie Lionheart

Posted by craigz , 12 July 2011 · 2,673 views

Date: Saturday, 20th Mar 2010
Venue: 'The Bird'
Reviewer: Cissi Tsang

"Hello!" said a small sign on the door of the not-yet-officially-opened The Bird. "Are you here for the Petanque private party?" The sign then directed us to go around the back of the venue. The CD launch (and possible final show, as linchpin member Anton McKay was leaving for the eastern states) was a hush-hush event, where you had to RSVP your name earlier in order to get through the door.

Once recognised as a legitimate member of the audience, The Bird opened up as being a cosy, intimate venue with suitably ambient lighting. Stark brickwork matched nicely with wooden furniture, and blue-painted windows shielding the inside proceedings from curious bystanders on William Street gave the gig that extra touch of cool exclusiveness.

Lil Leonie Lionheart warmed up the proceedings with a solo set of quietly intense acoustic songs, with her swapping between an ukelele and a n acoustic nylon guitar. As usual, she was charmingly awkward and sincere with her set, with her music part twee and part naive folk. An interesting and intriguing artist with droning instrumentation providing a suitable backdrop for her whimsical vocals and lyrical excursions.

Josh Fontaine has been around for years, teasing the Perth music scene with his precocious pop talent. It seems that he is finally ready to take the next step with his music, having now surrounded himself with a rocking outfit known as the 6s and 7s and with an album on the horizon. Tonight, the band were tight and swinging from the outset, launching into favourites such as Holidayz and had the crowd swaying their hips.

Despite their facetious-sounding name, Burgers of Beef are a seriously good band. From singing about zombies chasing people to eat their brains to their penchant for raising their hands before every song, they were rocking good fun.

Petanque leader Anton McKay was given a raucous welcome as kicked off Petanque's set alone on stage. He was slowly joined by the other members of the band (keyboardist Tara John looking resplendent in a wonderful green dress) and soon the band were kicking hard with their crazy, quirky pop tunes. Some minor technical difficulties with Anton's guitar ("Never put new strings on a guitar before a gig") only acted to endear the band even more with the crowd, who, as the set went on, treated the band like heroes. Songs like Over The Town and, later on, Happiness, went down like a treat, with the latter sending the crowd into a dancing frenzy.

As the applause from the night died down and people began to disperse, it was appropriate to reflect on the enigma that was Petanque. Cerebral lyrics mixed with odd time signatures (remarks by Anton about a song "being in 5/8" quickly became part of the territory), strange chord progressions and spacey synthesisers gave the band a quirky niche few bands could inhabit. At least they finally realised their long-delayed album (Songs to Help You Feel Better) as something for people to remember them by.