Peter Garrett and the Alter Egos Taronga Zoo Sydney, AUS January 27, 2017
Some people say Peter Garrett got his inimitable, signature whirling dervish dance steps and refreshingly nonsensical, jerky thrusting of hand gestures from Radio Birdman’s Rob Younger, whose early live performances have left a lasting imprint on him during his formative years during the birth of punk rock in Sydney. An influence that not only culminated in moves but eventually manifested itself the punk rock approach to Midnight Oil’s political theatre and agitprop.
There are worse pedigrees to be had.
Retired from his political career and having walked the walk for ten years in parliament, the long-limbed, gangly environmentalist made an authentic return to the stage and his first and foremost vocation.
While his current incarnation is nowhere as edgy as his efforts spearheading Midnight Oil, tonight’s live performance brings an understated intensity and sentiment without sentimentality, anchored in Garrett’s commanding stage presence and untainted and unwithered by his time in politics, messy compromises in the high offices and the public eye.
Backed by a solid band of seasoned that locked in and seemingly enjoyed the ride, the performance was focused on Garrett’s solo emissions with raw nods to history yet refraining from playing to nostalgia.
Songs of homecoming, reaffirmation and bluesy defiance with Garrett’s bark and howl found with Taronga Zoo a perfect location: The Twilight at Taronga concert series offers its yearly, wonderfully relaxed open-air shows series nestled on the lawns of Taronga Zoo’s amphitheatre set against the backdrop of the scenic Sydney harbour.
If Garrett’s show tonight was a taste of things to come, there is something to look forward this year with him burning the Midnight Oil again with the reunion of the band.
Photos by KAVV