The Lemon Twigs is quite literally the first modern music act I’ve bothered to become excited about within the last almost 15 years.
I have never seen such musical talent at this young age in anyone. Ever.
Playing the intimate space of the John Curtin Hotel in Carlton, this bunch of youngsters blew the packed place apart. They effortlessly recreated the melodic rock/pop sound of their (sorta) debut album, Do Hollywood, released last year on 4AD.
This was their third show in Australia in just four days. On Saturday evening (22 July) they played their debut at Sydney’s Oxford Art Centre, prior to their Sunday performance at Byron Bay’s Splendour In The Grass festival.
The audiences in Sydney and Melbourne couldn’t have been more different; there, the mainly millennial hipster crowd consisted of many young ladies – vocal and boisterous. Here, this was more of a mature hipster crowd, comprising of many urbane, midde-aged males. With thankfully, considerably less moshing.
Long Island brothers Brian and Michael D’Addario, aged just 20 and 18, who swap between playing drums and guitar, are stage-schooled in all the right ways, with swagger and confidence, but none of the precociousness or arrogance found in so many chart acts of today.
Witnessing Michael on drums is something spectacular – like watching Keith Moon on speed! Both he and Brian are tremendously gifted on both instruments, and more.
They are ably-assisted by Danny Ayala on keys (and drums for the John Prine tune, Fish And Whistle) and Megan Zeankowski, resplendent with a Rickenbacker Sunburst 4003 bass draped across her.
The Lemon Twigs’ harmonies are glorious: the siblings were taught well by their mother, Susan Hall, and father, Ronnie D’Addario (why this talented man never made it in the pop world, remains a mystery, but check out his newly reissued albums), who brought them up on all the greats; The Beatles, Beach Boys, Todd Rundgren, Harry Nilsson, Wings, Queen, Big Star, et al.
It’s not just their incredible musical chops either. These kids put on a striking, energetic show, with Michael and his heart-stopping high-kicks, and a fashion style all of their own, bought from op shops all over, including Brunswick Street in Melbourne.
This is the greatest new band in the world today. Them’s big words. And I stand by these words.
I sincerely doubt you will ever get to see them perform in such a tiny venue again.
In the words of Ian “Molly” Meldrum (who also happened to be my gig partner for this event), “Do yourselves a favour…”The Lemon Twigs with Ian Molly Meldrum
The Lemon Twigs Melbourne 25 July 2017 setlist
I Wanna Prove To You (from Do Hollywood, 2016)
Haroomata (from Do Hollywood, 2016)
Why Didn’t You Say That (from Brothers Of Destruction, 2017)
Frank (from Do Hollywood, 2016)
You Can’t Talk To The Dude (Jonathan Richman cover)
These Words (from Do Hollywood, 2016)
How Lucky Am I (from Do Hollywood, 2016)
Night Song (from Brothers Of Destruction, 2017)
Baby Baby(from Do Hollywood, 2016)
So Fine (from Brothers Of Destruction, 2017)
Couldn’t I Just Tell You (Todd Rundgren cover)
As Long As We’re Together (from Do Hollywood, 2016)
Fish And Whistle (John Prine cover)
I Walked With A Zombie (Roky Erickson cover)
Queen Of My School (from Brothers Of Destruction, 2017)
Light And Love (from Brothers Of Destruction, 2017)