Ever since releasing her debut album in 2015 “Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit’, Courtney Barnett has really taken on the world with her deadpan alternative-rock style. She’s played some of the biggest festivals, performed on SNL, Ellen and Conan and has sold out countless headlining shows at the same time. Her second studio album ‘Tell Me How You Really Feel’ is an honest affair with thought invoking and raw tracks that still manage to deliver big singalong moments. To celebrate the release of the album Barnett has finally returned home for a massive run of dates which included a little stop in Brisbane.
Draped in curtains and aesthetic fairy lights Courtney Barnett took to the stage at The Tivoli soaked in moody red lighting and launched straight into the honest ‘Hopefulessness’. She didn’t mess around during the nearly 2 hour show by delivering 20 tracks that took you down memory lane with a cool selection from her two albums and EP’s as well as some covers. The only thing missing from the show was a little nod to her Kurt Vile collaborative record ‘Lotta Sea Lice’ which would’ve been a nice little addition. But as the crowd warningly welcomed her she rocked out to ‘City Looks Pretty’, ‘Avant Gardener’, ‘Need A Little Time’ and ‘Crippling Self Doubt And A General Lack Of Self Confidence’. She’s never been someone who is afraid to speak their mind and ‘Nameless, Faceless’ heard her addressing the honest reality that women are afraid to walk alone at night. “I wanna walk through the park in the dark. Men are scared that women will laugh at them. I wanna walk through the park in the dark. Women are scared that men will kill them”. The social commentary track was received with massive applause and respect from everyone standing in the packed theatre. She continued her honest and reflective themes with the music industry consumer commentary ‘Don’t Apply Compression Gently’ that hears her confessing “I may not be 100% happy but at least I’m not with you”. The moody and angsty vibe of the show continued with tracks like ‘I’m Not Your Mother, I’m Not Your Bitch’, ‘Sunday Roast’, ‘Depreston’, ‘Elevator Operator’ and ‘Charity’.
As Barnett said goodnight to the crowd she quickly reappeared and announced that she would be playing a couple more songs which the crowd excitingly agreed to. A cover of ‘Everything Is Free’ rolled into the relaxed ‘Anonymous Club’ before wrapping it all up with the unstoppable ‘Pedestrian At Best’. Throughout the nearly 2 hour show she kept the crowd interaction to a minimum and just delivered strong and angsty moments. The crowd was receptive and relaxed as they soaked in all the reflective vibes she was offering. It was truly a great showcase of an artist who throughout everything has really stayed true to herself.
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Photos by Hannah Dodd