The Cruel Sea Dust Off The Legacy for 2023 Reunion Tour - Noise11.com
Tex Perkins of The Cruel Sea. Photo by Ros O'Gorman.

Tex Perkins of The Cruel Sea. Photo by Ros O'Gorman.

The Cruel Sea Dust Off The Legacy for 2023 Reunion Tour

by Paul Cashmere on December 4, 2023

in News

When Australian bands of the 90s are mentioned The Cruel Sea tend to be down the list or overlooked. Silverchair, You Am I, The Superjesus, Powerfinger, Baby Animals, Spiderbait, Something For Kate and The Living End dominate writings about the era.

The Cruel Sea’s lack of column inches was probably because the band faded out instead of breaking up. The last album was 2001, the last proper tour was 2002. There were occasional regatherings after that but they were short or one-offs. And up until recently, there was no real attention paid to the back catalogue.

On 23 June this year, The Cruel Sea’s third (and breakthrough album) ‘The Honeymoon Is Over’ was remastered and expanded to mark the 30th anniversary of its release. That re-release initiated renewed interest for the band to reform and reactive its legacy, a legacy well covered in dust.

This current tour is the first time The Cruel Sea have dispensed with the mothballs in 10 years. I count only 22 shows between 2003 and 2019 and that 2019 was a one-off and first show since 2013.

The 2023 tour setlist covers The Cruel Sea from 1989 to 2003. (Fun Fact: The first The Cruel Sea release ‘Down Below’ and the last Spandau Ballet release ‘Heart Like A Sky’ were both released in September 1989).

The Cruel Sea setlist, 2 December 2023, Palais Theatre Melbourne

Shadder (from This Is Not The Way Home, 1991)
It’s Alright (‘Cause She Loves Me) (from This Is Not The Way Home, 1991)
Anybody but You (from Three Legged Dog, 1995)
Delivery Man (from The Honeymoon is Over, 1993)
Don’t Sell It (from This Is Not The Way Home, 1991)
Too Fast for Me (from Three Legged Dog, 1995)
Better Get a Lawyer (from Three Legged Dog, 1995)
Fangin’ Hoons (from This Is Not The Way Home, 1991)
Seems Twice (from The Honeymoon is Over, 1993)
Woman With Soul (from The Honeymoon is Over, 1993)
Cocaine (from Where’s The Smoke, 2001)
Black Stick (from The Honeymoon is Over, 1993)
The Honeymoon Is Over (from The Honeymoon is Over, 1993)
This Is Not the Way Home (from This Is Not The Way Home, 1991)

Encore:
High Plains Drifter (from This Is Not The Way Home, 1991)
4 (from This Is Not The Way Home, 1991)
Down Below (from Down Below EP, 1989)
Margarita (from Down Below EP, 1989)
Blame It on the Moon (from The Honeymoon is Over, 1993)
Sure ‘Nuff ‘n Yes I Do (Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band cover)

The Cruel Sea remaining dates:

7 December, Adelaide, Hindley Street Music Hall
9 December, Fremantle, Fremantle Prison
15 and 16 December, Sydney, Enmore Theatre

The Cruel Sea will also perform at Bluesfest in 2024.

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