I don’t think I’ve seen the Windmill quite as crowded, unless it was for Daniel Johnston when you had to limbo through people’s legs to get to the bar. Having played East London the night before, Melbourne’s Twerps come South, where things are real, irony will get you a smack in the chops, and the last hipster who dared to cross the river was fed to Roofdog.
Twerps have a charismatic stage presence and an easy rapport with the audience, who go crazy for the polished indiepop of songs mostly featuring on new record Range Anxiety. The band’s music draws on the Go Betweens as well as the Feelies and Galaxie 500. With such influences in the DNA, the music should be popular, but Twerps invest their sound with an effortless, timeless charm on songs like the anthemic ‘Stranger’ and ‘Back To You’ with its anthemic, singalong chorus that’s sung-along-to by the Aussies in the audience. Meanwhile, the gorgeous ‘Adrenaline’ could almost be from the pen of Grant McLennan, such is its proficiency with atmosphere and melody. The Windmill is a small venue and Marty Frawley works it perfectly, turning it into the equivalent of a front room with his audience interaction, and perfectly framing the infectious pop produced by his band.
Primitive Parts are a three piece who combine classic Flying Nun rock’n’roll simplicity with the London-centric musings of Television Personalities to great effect. Yet we find there’s more to them than this as they add angular, Wire-ish tunes that are fast, punky but melodic. They work really hard to make the straightforward sound so good and it’s surprising they’re just the support band (answer: not for much longer).