-By Dariya Salmin
On Saturday night at the Astor Theatre, Perth was left in complete awe after Sarah Blasko’s final performance for her Australian Eternal Return Tour. Blasko put on a versatile set, performing many electronic songs from her new album Eternal Return, acoustic stripped back songs from older albums such as What the Sea Wants, the Sea Will Have and the crowd favourite of the night, an intimate and microphone-less song called Here, which had everyone completely transfixed. Accompanying Blasko in the night were the talented musicians, Lupa J and Jack Colwell.
Lupa J is an 18 year old classically trained violinist who now pursues creating indie, dance and electronic music. Similar to Blasko’s own musical journey, it is no surprise as to why Lupa J was chosen to support her on this tour. With a poetic and delicate voice, she manages to create a peaceful and dream-like atmosphere whilst adding electronic layers, which had the quickly arriving audience listening with intrigue. Joining her on stage was a violinist and electric drummer who helped create the interesting soundscape by adding another dimension to the set, other than just an electronic desk.
The audience was very social for the first two support acts, but that didn’t put off Jack Colwell who delivered a charismatic and theatrical performance. Colwell and his band created a jazzy and chaotic sound, where the instrumentals flowed perfectly together with Colwell’s powerful Nick-Cave-like deep vocals. Playing new songs such as No Mercy and his current single Don’t Cry Those Tears. A really upbeat song with a catchy synth melody, this track was the last one for his set and probably the best. Colwell even managed to slip in a small rap half way through the song. Ending on a high, the crowd was still buzzing and socialising waiting for Blasko to grace us with her presence.
Clearly the anticipation of the crowd was purely for Sarah Blasko’s performance, as everyone stopped talking and focused solely on the stage as a count down erupted. The lights went out, and everything on stage went black. Blasko, accompanied by a five-piece band, entered on stage wearing nothing but all black attire. Very aesthetically pleasing to the eye, bright spotlights shone through the stage and onto the crowd. Blasko broke out into a song from the new album, I Am Ready and it was clear from the get go, if you hadn’t heard her perform already, her voice really was as powerful and as magical live than it is in recordings.
So comfortable on stage, Blasko started off with her new found electro poppy sound playing songs such as; Better With You, I’d Be Lost, Maybe This Time and Beyond. Before toning it down a bit to a more acoustic sound for her older songs, All I Want, We Won’t Run and No Turning Back. The crowd responded with such enthusiasm, especially for All I Want with her famous lyrics “coz I don’t even know myself”. However it was her intimate, stripped back performance of Here which she sung on stage with just a ukele and no mic, that had everyone nearly in tears. The Astor was completely still and dead quiet, everyone focusing on her hauntingly beautiful voice. Demonstrating to everyone, how much of a precious instrument her voice is on it’s on, it really was a very special moment that I’m sure many will remember forever.
Bringing the band back on stage, and introducing them one by one, Blasko brought the hypnotic and electro sounds back again. It’s clear how much her musical journey and personal journey has progressed and matured as a lot of the newer songs are about being happy and in love, with a very optimistic and playful feel. She danced around the stage with ease and quirkiness as she played a few more songs from the new album, and the band played a lot more synth than the first half. Thanking everyone for coming to watch her and stating how thankful she has been for this tour, Blasko left the stage while The Astor stomped and cheered for an encore. Returning after some time, the lights shone red all over the stage and Blasko performed the song everyone had been anticipating, I Wanna Be Your Man. An absolutely breath taking hour and a half performance from Blasko, everyone left the theatre in utter and complete awe.
Photo Credit: Matthew Picken