Here we are on a very busy Festival night in Edinburgh at Bannermans where a comedian (as part of the Fringe) is finishing off in the venue before the bands set up for the gig. The town attracts a lot of people from all over the world at this time of year and so the bar is very busy as I arrive to catch Australia’s The Mis-Made.
Due to the Festival the doors don’t open until 20:30 so a late night ahead. First up tonight we have another lady from down under, but New Zealand this time, in the form of an acoustic set from Jas Josland, who also does a stunning electric show with a full band. The single “Money” from this year in particular is impressive. She has a fantastic voice which readily translates from electric to acoustic. Electric she reminds me of a richer vocal version of Avril Lavigne meets Gwen Stefani. Here tonight with her in acoustic mode she is a touch more mellow but nonetheless entertaining and enjoyable and she goes down well with the crowd. If you catch her out and about busking at the Festival or a venue, stop and listen!
Local band up next, The Throwaways. It seems this was their first proper gig tonight, having played one previously to four students! The band are a good straight-forward rock band who I think will really improve with time. The singer/bass player has a great voice and the band played really well – I would catch them again. The two guitarists need to move a bit more but overall a good band to look out for if you are out and about.
Then main band, The Mis-Made from Australia. They start off with “Man in the Middle” from 2015’s Maelstrom – hints of Garbage meets L7, a nice groove to get things going. A real stormer next with “Ice” from their debut album Changeling, a real foot-stomper of a track with a real The Go-Go’s/L7 hook laden beat to it. We have some “Good-Intentions” after that with some killer riffing on the go from Jessamine and Jess. Rexy is all over the stage with her bass and Ned is all over her drum kit – a great track. There is an impressive array of vocal changes between Jessamine and Jess as they swap over track to track.
The first track played off the new album is “Blood Money”. I love the guitar sound on this one along with Ned’s drumming. The bass intro from Rexy heralds “Cold Heart” and we really are in L7 territory here; everything screams grunge as we bounce along with the vocals, crunching guitars and pounding rhythm section of Rexy and Ned. A bit of “Control” from the girls as we stay in L7 country with a touch of Courtney Love thrown in for good measure.
We head back to 2013 next and enter the “House of Cards” for a change of sound and pace; a nice layered track which has some early punk hints to it. We get back up to date as “She Rips Me Open” creeps in minus the string section with some intricate guitar work and haunting vocals. The thumping drums from Ned herald the “Outsider”, a riff-tastic stomp-along track (missing the album version’s piano), a real punky/grungy killer track. As the guitar takes us slowly in, we get the slow roller “Enigma” for a punter in the crowd who asked for it, Jessamine tells us. The live versions are a fair change from their album versions which for me is always a good thing and it’s nice to hear tracks changed up a bit.
The slow pace goes a bit guitar mad before slowing back down; a stunning track from the Maelstrom EP. We head to the double A-side single as we get some “Red Eyes”, a great vocal paced track before the fuzz-toned guitars kick in big time. The other track off the same single is played next, “In Between”, a real rocker with some great guitar before we get real Foo Fighters-style rip roaring playing with the instrumental track “Fountain Street” – one of my favourites from the girls and I’m glad it’s played tonight. Crunching guitars, killer bass lines and drumming to die for – so good. To end an all too short a set, we head back to House of Cards for the thump-tastic “Wrecking Ball”, a great fast-paced ending to a great show.
The Land(s!) Down Under produces some amazing bands and I have just added Jas Josland and The Mis-Made to that ever growing list. Go see the girls, buy the new album and sample a taste of what the other side of the planet can offer.
Photos by Gary Cooper Photography