Review by Benjamin Lamb
The Rising Festival kicked off on Tuesday night, with a variety of events of all shapes and sizes happening across the city. At the Forum, the night featured musical stylings from Lost Animal and Weyes Blood. The crowd featured all types of people, young and old, friends and partners, showing the music of Weyes Blood having no boundaries.
In a surprisingly late start for a Tuesday night gig, Lost Animal hit the stage around 8:30 and shared their electronic style pop rock with the crowd, much of which didn’t really respond to the music being played, each song was filled with only a smattering of applause, which was unfortunate, as the duo really showcased why they are one of the best artists making their way up in the scene at the moment. They played a set sitting around 50 minutes, which allowed us to dive into a great deal of their back catalogue.
Then around 10pm, the artist known as Weyes Blood (Natalie Mering) hit the stage after her band and immediately got into the music that we’ve loved for so long. The set began with the stunning ‘It’s Not Just Me, It’s Everybody’, and everyone was immediately transported into another dimension, Natalie’s voice pulling you in unlike anything else out there.
A highlight coming with the performance of ‘Everyday’, a song that was pre-empted with Mering telling us she wanted us to dance, but the musicality and vocal talent of everyone on stage keeping us all in awe and leaving us not to do anything but what was taking place on stage in front of our eyes.
In this day and age, the realms of pop and indie music is a little jam-packed, it’s hard to sit apart from the pack, but Weyes Blood manages to this effortlessly, through old school instrumentation, visuals, and more. One noticeable moment came with the track ‘God Turn Me Into A Flower’, which was backed up with a great music video, and everything just fell together beautifully.
Natalie was perfect with her crowd interaction, which has become a staple of sets in this day and age – there wasn’t an over-exaggerated pandering or lack thereof, she told us some stories, chatted about the tour, but still left enough time for the music to do most of the talking.
Then we moved into a faster section of the set, where we were able to experience some faster Weyes Blood music, with songs like fan favourite ‘Movies’, and ‘Hearts Aglow’, the latter of which closed out the main part of the set.
The show finished with a double encore, ‘A Lot’s Gonna Change’, and ‘Picture Me Better’, the latter performed solo by Mering, showing us for one last time, she is one of the best musicians and vocalists out there at the moment.
As we all made our way out of the Forum into the cold Melbourne weather, we all knew we experienced something special, and that Weyes Blood is one of our greatest artists at the moment.