BY ANDREW BOLT
(IT WAS ACTUALLY BY ME)
Last night, Sydney band Hedge Fund played at Newtown’s hottest new venue, Waywards, for the monthly VISIONS night. We asked seasoned music columnist ANDREW BOLT to give us his thoughts.
Hedge Fund are a frustrating band to review.
As an audience member, and a music lover, the experience is one of almost-ecstasy muted by a dull, painful ache: this is a band who are clearly talented, hard-working and charismatic performers – with the exception of one member.
There’s no doubt that there is great pleasure to be had in listening to the metronomic precision of drummer Miles Thomas, the ferocious, post-punk attitude of guitarist Mislav Belobradjic, and the seasoned, rhythmic powerhouse of Nick Weaver’s bass playing.
But a ship is only as good as its captain, and this ship’s captain is, for want of better words, an awful, stupid cunt.
Singer William Colvin prowls the stage less like the rock satyr he so obviously thinks he is and more like a creepy uncle doing a Mick Jagger impersonation in front of the Christmas fire. The principal image that comes to mind is a cockroach pretending to be a swan.
The greatest pain is watching the other three, exceptional musicians and characters all of them, straining against the monumental ego of their feckless leader.
The hatred in bassist Nick Weaver’s eyes is palpable; he doesn’t so much throw daggers at his singer as he does lob hand grenades.
Croatian guitarist Mislav Belobrajdic’s boundless, child-like energy is constantly stifled by the vain posturing of Colvin. At one point Mislav, grinning, performed an improvised and clearly brilliant guitar solo, only to have the smile wiped from his face by an aggressive whisper in his ear from the front man.
William obviously isn’t comfortable sharing the spotlight.
When watching Colvin perform, the nautical analogy is apt. If he’s the ship’s captain, the only lasting pleasure for the audience is the foreknowledge that there’s a fucking great iceberg in the ship’s path and that the captain will respond to his navigator’s warnings with the words “We’re unsinkable. Sail on.”
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