Melbourne Ausralia’s Wagons kill it at the Railway Club
When Melbourne, Australia’s Wagons last hit Vancouver it was in the form of lead singer Henry Wagons’ solo opening set for a sold out Labour Day weekend crowd at the Biltmore Cabaret. The last year’s been good to the Wagons with record distribution deals signed in the U.S. and with Canada’s Six Shooter Records and a successful trip to South by Southwest (as well as Canada’s North by Northeast.) Almost a year to the day later, Wagons returned to Vancouver to play a set at much more intimate Railway Club–this time with the whole band in tow.
The Railway set followed a visit tot Seattle to play Bumbershoot on the Saturday. The Sunday night in middle of a three day weekend made for a modest crowd with more than its share of transplanted Australians to be found. When Henry was told by the crowd that the next day was a public holiday the response came with barely a pause–“Let’s get pissed.”
With that, the band played a loud full set of material from last year’s Rise and Fall of Goodtown album and the newly released Rumble, Shake & Tumble. Henry’s stage presence was as entertaining as ever as he moved from stage to crowd and back to the stage. The always popular Willie Nelson had the appreciative audience screaming along the chorus with the band. A quiet moment saw a cover of Hoyt Axton’s Never Been to Spain (the video is here) and Goodtown saw the Vancouver crowd debating which suburb was a worse place to live (Abbotsford nudged out Surrey, to no one’s surprise.)
The full set left the crowd happy and wanting more, and an encore saw Henry step aside while the band performed a bit of freestyle rap. With the clock ticking past midnight (late for a Vancouver crowd) the gig wound down and the crowd filtered out into a warm night, no doubt looking forward to the next day’s holiday with a bit of a sleep in.
Wagons headed off to Toronto and Ottawa and are now on a full tour across the United States. Don’t miss the band now, so you’ll have the chance to say “I saw them when…” one of these days: these small gigs aren’t going to last long.
Full tour details are available on the Wagons’ web site.