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Frightened Rabbit: Thurs, 2nd May @ The Zoo, Brisbane

Words by Scenewave Australia - Published on May 14, 2013

It was back to the Zoo last Thursday for a fun filled night of Scottish traditional music: Frightened Rabbit supported by Admiral Fallow. Despite having one of the poorer names in recent history, the opening act’s frontman had an amazing voice and great sound all round to be honest. They were an awesome choice for Frightened Rabbit and set them up nicely.

Scott and the lads kicked us off with a few tracks from their latest record Pedestrian Verse – this album was still growing on me up until that night, and their performance of a few key tracks like “Holy” and “Backyard Skulls” made me realize what a great record it was. As far as the setlist was concerned, the night was well-planned and featured a great selection of tracks from Midnight Organ Fight, The Winter of Mixed Drinks and Pedestrian Verse.

Some of the highlights were “Nothing Like You”, “Heads Roll Off” and “Modern Leper” – which has to be one of the greatest tracks they’ve ever written. Scott came out and did “Poke” completely solo (except for the brief moment where he says the c-bomb, which prompted some crowd interaction). I love a lead man who plays such complicated guitar licks that he has to look down at his guitar while he sings. (Alright Yannis, pipe down mate…)

Hutchison’s crowd banter was fantastic. He’s such a genuine guy and his interaction with his fans further demonstrates this. He teased the crowd for the duration of the set, at one stage wising, “well you fucked that up, you’re a real embarrassment to your city. I’m not angry, I’m just disappointed.” He then introduced “Old Fashioned” with, “so who’s in the mood for a wee dance? No grinding though”. What a good fun guy.

Before they spoilt us with some epic crowd pleasers, FR cranked “Late March, Death March” and “The Oil Slick” from their new record. Frightened Rabbit ultimately knew exactly what would get the crowd gushing, saving a couple of their epic anthems for last. “My Backwards Walk” was huge; the crowd quite literally screaming the final stanza of ‘you’re the shit and I’m knee deep in it’. It’s a pretty bloody good line to get to yell again and again. “Good Arms vs Bad Arms” was another amazing song, each individual line full of such raw emotion.

Scott then got us all to hold a note – which I couldn’t realise the significance of at the time – before counting in the band for the start of “Swim Until You Can’t See Land”. What a tune. They encored with “The Woodpile”, then “Scottish Winds” because of a guitar error and a little extra time was created, before ending with the classic “Living In Colour”. This surprised me actually, because I’d read that they don’t rate their third album that highly…

It was great to see them once more; they’ve come a long way since I first caught them during their 12 midday slot at Splendour in the Grass a couple of years ago. We’re thoroughly looking forward to their next record, and future opportunities to catch them live!

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