Words by Tracey Moyle.
If you could bottle up boundless amounts of energy and give it a name it would be called The Struts.
I imagine anyone who saw The Struts as support or on their own as they carried on with the remaining shows Greta Van Fleet had to cancel due to illness back in February this year, they would have been at The Triffid for their ‘Young and Dangerous Tour’ Tuesday night. This is a band that, whether you have heard their music or not, it’s a given that you’ll walk away from a live show a dedicated fan.
Their dynamic attitude fits the modern Glam rock genre perfectly with lead singer Luke Spiller easily comparable to such charismatic performers as Freddy Mercury and Mick Jagger. They lace the 70’s Glam rock feel with the 80’s Glam metal era, their performance channelling the rock gods of old with a dash of the Motely Crue and Poison coming in. Their music and performance recreates energy, cheekiness and good times of some of the greatest times and memories in rock. A reminder of when music was sassy and fun.
The night opened with the party atmosphere everyone was expecting when support J3 took the stage with his rock anthem acoustic covers. Something completely out of the ordinary, but what a way to build momentum. Belting out adored classic, Bon Jovi’s Dead or Alive, The Triffid took on Pub Choir mode with a massive sing-a-long from the dominant over 40 crowd. But the age didn’t matter as even the younger fans knew the classics that were dished up with songs like Born to Run, My Hero, Wonderwall and Purple Rain. It like was being at the best ever cover night at the local pub with a bunch of friends. Warming up is understating J3’s effect. Not that The Struts need the crowd to be warmed up. The buzzing anticipation around the room created enough of that.
After a quick drink break for the crowd, the lights go down and music cranks up. The roar of the crowd is literally deafening with the familiar opening riff of Primadonna Like Me echo’s out. Spiller is in fine lively form demanding the attention of the crowd. Everyone is jumping. The energy in the room was bursting out and bouncing off The Triffid walls. They kept the hype of the crowd flowing with Body Talks next, keeping the party vibe high creating another awesome sing-a-long. It was obvious everyone in that room knew every word. When the song finished the crowd clapped and cheered so loud in adoration it was like a standing ovation for an encore after a full set. The place literally went nuts and the sound was insane. And we were only at song two. I can feel the excitement and energy of the night still sitting here writing about it.
They brought the crowd alive again with a great dance along track with Kiss This next, then followed on with In Love With The Camera’ with everyone clapping and jumping and Spiller was riding on the back of the energy off the crowd and owned the stage. The band are the perfect compliment for each other and fit perfectly together. Gethin Davies on drums sets a banging pace and looks like he was plucked straight out of an 80’s glam metal band. Lead guitarist Adam Slack roared through with brilliant hooks keeping the quality high and bass player Jed Elliott assisting on vocals, set the perfect rhythm and used the stage to it’s best advantage, moving about keeping the party feels going both on and off the stage. Fire (Part 1) from 2018’s ‘Young and Dangerous’ continued spreading the good feels but when the their 2017 hit One Night Only started the clapping took up a furious pace and again the crowd sung at the top of their ecstatic lungs. With more songs in the mix including Dirty Sexy Money and Tatler Magazine with Spiller showing off his skill on piano and The Ol’ Swictheroo creating more crowd participation in song, it was a change of wardrobe for Spinner into a flamboyant red shimmering, draping sleeved top, the perfect Glam attire, a brilliant guitar solo from Davies leading into Do It So Well and their dedication to Australian music that brought the house down with their cover of AC/DC’s Highway to Hell. But there was no letting up with possibly one of their best songs next with Put Your Money On Me. This song is one of the catchiest rock songs I’ve heard in years and how it hasn’t taken these guys to playing much larger venues is beyond my comprehension. The Struts have captured that perfect reflection of an attitude that has had an effect on music over so many decades from, The Beatles to Queen, to Van Halen to Oasis. While you can’t help but draw comparisons to Queen, obviously a huge influence for The Struts as a whole, they are by no means a copy-cat band, with their own fusion drawn on from their influences.
The fun was amped up with Spiller creating a sing-off between the left side and right side of the venue. Slack’s side vs Elliott’s side powered off against each other and what a thunderous roar. I swear the crowd were louder than the band. Breaking into Where Did She Go was the perfect end for the set having every element of their music infused. Hands up swaying, singing then Spiller had the whole venue crouched down on the floor ready to jump up on his cue, shouting out; “I want to see and hear everyone single one of us have the time of our lives, alright!”. With energy bursting from everyone, and Spiller building it up; “Are you ready? Show me what you’ve got” the crowd leapt up singing; “Oh, Oh, Oh, where did she go? Where did my love run? I want it back to the way it was.” What a spectacular!!!
They left the stage to a thunderous roar with Spiller returning for a beautiful solo, back on piano, with Somebody New and again the crowd joining in.
The final song of the night and their most popular, It Could Have Been Me with all the loving adoration and frenzy displayed throughout the night culminating in one final explosion of positive happy energy shared through a love of music.
The band and the fans were all grateful for the experience and honestly one of, if not the best, live performance I have seen all year, maybe longer.
The Struts finished off their Australian Tour tonight heading of to Canada and the U.S.