Mighty Boys: an album launch and a farewell show at Curtin House
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Mighty Boys: an album launch and a farewell show at Curtin House

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Despite this concept’s incongruity not outside the scope of Mighty Boys’ insouciant anti-hegemony, it wasn’t lost on the band’s vocalist Keats who offered up a heartfelt explanation to the packed house that the band, having not played together for 12-months, were very close to just quietly putting out Timely Reminders with no show and let the band drift off into obscurity.

The band opened with track two, ‘Pursuit Of Happiness’.  The transference from stage to the audience was inspiring: Keats in all black loomed commandingly, singing into the mic with one leg cocked on the foldback. Meanwhile, the band’s other vocalist Baz, dressed in all white, playfully bounced in time with the music – the spectacle coming off as if it was a side project for Henry Rollins and Bez from The Happy Mondays.

Due to its newness, Timely Reminders engaged but didn’t get the 300-punter crowd into a frenzy. However, the opening riff of ‘Dapto Dreaming’ wasn’t halfway through when the night’s first crowd surfer bounced along the many hands in the first few rows and a couple dancers invaded the stage.

Similarly, Dole Cheque & Kabana’s most well known song ‘Hippy Shakes’evoked an almost visceral fever in the room as this ripping tune that lampoons five-day outdoor dance music festivals reached its chorus: “I’ve got the shakes, I’ve got the hippy hippy sha-aaa-a-aaa-kes / Coz been at a bush-doof for eight-days.”

The set closed in the most unexpected way – with a cover of Powderfinger’s hit from 2000 ‘My Happiness’. It was so wrong for one of Melbourne’s most ‘garage’ rock bands to hat-tip such mediocrity but it felt so right.

As soon as they had completed Fanning and co.’s musical equivalent of Zoloft, Mighty Boys locked into the first song they’d ever written together and now the last song they’d ever perform, ‘Drinkin’. “Drinkin’ and drinkin’ and drinkin’ / Drinkin’ and drinkin’ and drinkin / Drinkin’ and drinkin’ and drinkin’ / And fucking up your house.”