MORELAND’S BALL ALBUM REVIEWS
There is a magical and mythical place called Bourbon and Branch hidden behind a discreet door in a seedy, run-down part of San Francisco. The entrance is obscure and deliberately hard-to-find while entry to this plush hedonistic lair requires a secret password. When the thirsty reveler enters this elusive and enigmatic place they feel as if they are stepping into a different dimension of reality. Suddenly the drab ordinariness of the outside world is replaced with the heady sensation of having slipped into some decadent Prohibition-era speakeasy. Listening to The Woohoo Revue has a similarly transporting effect. There is nothing mundane, conservative or everyday about this wildly attired and sonically arresting swinging sextet. Their buoyant and jazzy gypsy-infused instrumental tunes would fit perfectly in the darkly romantic atmosphere of a bar like Bourbon and Branch as both bar and band share a refreshingly bohemian edginess. There is something decidedly lusty and nocturnal about this band’s music that seems sure to unleash the sweetest and most reckless passions. There is also something very ‘Johnny Depp’ about The Woohoo Revue: the glint in the eye; the swashbuckling irreverence; the wicked yet knowing smile; the zesty circus-tent glamour; and that rare and precious ability to be both irrevocably left-field and fabulously popular at the same time. Exploding with the joyous sounds of horns, strings and drums this vital spark of an eleven-track album will transform even the humblest lounge room into a jiving ballroom, a sawdust-encrusted big top or, if you are very lucky, a secret, hidden place positively crackling with mystery and celebration.
Best Track: The Goose, The Moose & The Boose
If You Like These, You’ll Like This: So Many Nights THE CAT EMPIRE
In A Word: Magical
The instrumentalists that make up The Woohoo Revue know their craft and they know it well, with the use of brass and percussion perfectly embodying the romanticism and sense of bohemian freedom that this sort of music has come to represent over time. “The Goose, The Moose & The Boose” is one of the album’s highlights; the strings and drums on this track are blissful and marks the point on the album where I think that all the sparks which had been igniting on the record thus far, finally explodes. The crescendos which round the song out bring to mind circus and gypsy-life imagery and never stops to allow a breath to be taken.
It’s so refreshing to hear a collection of sounds which is so far away from the now slightly monotonous and uninspired trend of indie bands; The Woohoo Revue, with Moreland’s Ball, have created an album which sets out to appeal to all demographics and I have to say, it’d be hard for any lover of music NOT to find something on this record to be impressed with. Even if the genre isn’t your bag, you have to admire the sheer talent behind the arrangement and the delivery of the music itself; it’s slick and tantalising to listen to…I can only imagine what The Woohoo Revue can do as a live ensemble.
Oh jazz, you naughty thing
A Melbourne-based gypsy/prohibition-era jazz ensemble, The Woohoo Revue are back with their latest album Moreland’s Ball. Not since Doch has there been such a festival-ready and chaotic yet musically precise ensemble, and they’re certain to charm even the most straight-laced indie kid into the debauched arms of their regionally diverse jazz. A sextet of strings, horns and drums brings together the adrenalin-fuelled soiree that is this collection. Recorded by Adam Rhodes (The Cat Empire), Moreland’s Ball will have you drinking a Tom Collins, showing some knee and doing the Charleston seconds after you first put it on. Forget bass-heavy wub wub wub, this is an intoxicating album with enough energy to keep an audience dancing until the next Avalanches album comes out – and by that I mean for eternity.
I’m standing in a heaving crowd somewhere under Swanston Street. A violinist in a gypsy/folky/burlesque outfit with the punky addition of a multi-coloured skirt is doing the rounds on someone’s shoulders. On stage a drummer, guitarist, bassist, trumpeter and saxophonist are playing counterpoint to her sometimes phenomenal, sometimes purposefully discordant solo. The likes of Manson, Metallica and Rammstein would be very pleased with a crowd as excited as this one.
This is the Moreland’s Ball album launch by the band Woohoo Revue at the Hi-Fi Bar, a brilliant venue that I have probably walked past twenty times. There have been sword eaters and gogo girls and a burlesque theme to the evening that makes Christina Aguilera’s attempts look ho-hum in comparison.
The night started off at Mai Tai bar for 2 for 1 Friday drinks and progressed to my idea of heaven. Cookie is a bar that has an entire menu for beer, with an index! AN INDEX! The thing that I am realising about Melbourne is that, unless someone is showing you these amazing places, you will walk past a nondescript door without ever knowing the treasures within.
So that’s where Couchsurfing comes in! The entire evening was planned by a Pole from Kraków and I just pitched up along with a Libyan to join in the festivities. There is no need to know any one going; half the fun is meeting amazing people along the way!
Fast forward an hour or two, and a couple of drinks later, and a 21st Century Elvis in the form of Mikelangelo, from Mikelangelo and the Tin Star, is playing MC to the evening, but they also gave a fantastic set. For me it was music that would inspire Tarantino to create an ultraviolent spaghetti western (well another one, Django Unchained opens end of this year). There was the double strumming of an acoustic guitar, the pitch bending before a chorus and the haunting whistle of the front man, reminiscent of Pulp Fiction or Kill Bill.
The Woohoo Revue themselves are magnificent! The violin makes me think that Vivaldi settled for second fiddle when he completed the Four Seasons. The saxophone and trumpet set a scene out of all the old movies you ever wished were your life. And the drums! The drums kept rolling on, driving the crowd into an ever more excitable frenzy.
This is the first live act I’ve seen here, and I couldn’t quite believe that I wasn’t dreaming.Na zdrowie!