A crisp, cool night and an unexpected wait in the Channel 9 studios courtyard could not dim the pleasure at eventually hearing Tanunda band Blueprint. After an affectionate if slightly daggy introduction in verse, the instrumental trio launched into a set of technically accomplished and, importantly, infectious rhythms.
Right from the opening “Battleland”, a short and rich offering, Julian Helbig and Nick Pullman played raw and powerful acoustic guitar while Kerryn Schiller anchored the tunes with dynamic percussion. The styles touched on salsa, flamenco, and several atmospheric flights that defied classification. The enchanting “Shotter” even included Helbig on a Vietnamese dan bau, and Westernised though the sound was, it added a beautiful tone.
Much of the playing was reminiscent of the energetic Mexican guitar duo Rodrigo y Gabriela, producing a wash of sound punctuated by ringing notes and textures, and typically played very fast without being overwhelming. The sound pictures could be tender, too. At one stage the sound fitted perfectly my idea of music with which to watch stars from a country paddock, and “Ember” not surprisingly evoked images of fiery embers floating in the air.
There were many moments when hypnotic passages suddenly erupted with animated shifts in direction. “Scatch’n’Sniff” was full of little surprises embroidering a full-on freight train rhythm, and “Sloppy Lips” was intricate and memorable. Concluding, the captivating and jaunty “Star Nosed Mole” featured Pullman on the Bolivian charango.
Blueprint played with integrity and good humour, and were fun to listen to. First class.
Blueprint played at the Channel 9 Kevin Crease Studios on Saturday. They will be performing a free Adelaide Fringe show this Sunday, March 9, at Elderton Wines in Nuriootpa, and another on March 16 at Barossa Valley Brewing in Tanunda.
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Click here for all InDaily’s 2014 Adelaide Fringe stories and reviews.
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