A couple of weeks ago SURG was lucky enough to head along to the last leg of Sydney electronic trio Rufus’ sold out tour at the Hi-Fi, in support of their debut album ‘Atlas’. Kicking off the night was Canberra 3 piece SAFIA. Despite the early set time and a room dotted with punters, the boys put on a show to rival that of the headline act. Sitting pretty at number one on the iTunes electronic charts as of that day, the boys proved just why they’ve been the centre of attention of late. Their set, that included their previous single ‘Stretched and Faded’ and current number one track ‘Listen To Soul, Listen To Blues’, was also filled with some high-quality unreleased material that we’re sure will be making its way onto our radios any day now. SAFIA’s on-stage energy mixed in with their infectious beats makes them a force to be reckoned with and a great start up act (although we’re pretty sure they won’t be keeping that title for much longer).
SAFIA were followed by a super smooth transition into the beats of Adelaide producer, and now Sweat It Out brother, Motez. After not making it to Rufus’ Adelaide shows due to poor traffic, we were glad he didn’t suffer the same fate with the notorious Friday night Cleveland street rush. His set was the perfect breaker between the two live bands. Getting everyone away from the bars and turning the mosh into a dancefloor for a half hour was exactly what everyone needed. His new signing also brings the promise of some new original stuff – our ears are definitely pricked and waiting for that one!
Following a final stage check the Rufus boys appeared in a sea of blue light for the last time on their Atlas tour. Opening with ‘Modest Life’, the crowd both on the floor and up above roared in support. Their distinctive synth, most pronounced in songs like ‘Tonight’, bounced out and spread through the space, delighting everyone’s ears as it did. Their two singles from the album, ‘Take Me’ and ‘Desert Night’, were met with a euphoric wave through the crowd, filling the room with an energy that had people dancing from wall to wall. Joining the sea of facesNot only were their performances spot on musically, the dedication to making it a unique experience for all who went made them a stand out act to watch. Treating the crowd to extended harmonica bridges in ‘Talk To Me’, a stellar light show and an on-stage accompaniment by Toucan lead singer Jess Pollard for ‘Unforgiven’ made it a truly unique show. Plus, on top of all that, the fact that they seemed to be having a genuinely good time performing and engaging with the audience made it so much more than just listening to songs from an album.
The only disappointing aspect of this night was the after party that was supposed to encapsulate the whole experience, held and Club 77 following the gig. Playing alongside Rufus DJs were other SweatItOut signees Yolanda Be Cool, Sydney producers What So Not and Motez made another appearance as well. However it appeared that a consequence of prolific advertising on their social media sites, combined with a low entry fee and small capacity resulted in a nightmare scene for many hopeful partygoers on arrival. The line to get into 77 stretched down more than 100m past its entrance and no more than 40 minutes after the show at the Hi-Fi had finished all those waiting were told to leave as no one would be allowed entry for the rest of the night. Even though there really wasn’t anyone to blame (except maybe Rufus for being so overwhelmingly popular, or SweatItOut for throwing such a tempting afterparty) it was a real dampener for what was otherwise a ridiculously good night of live music.