Should I ever appear on RocKwiZ, I’m glad that I have a credible answer to the question “What was the first piece of music you bought with your own money?” While some people might cringe at their younger self, I can proudly remember the moment when I visited my nearest Brashs and bought Matchbook, Ian Moss’s first solo album, on cassette. I knew of Mossy from the Cold Chisel albums Dad played, but my love of solo tracks like “Tucker’s Daughter” and “Telephone Booth” inspired me to lay down my hard-earned pocket money. That was 27 years ago, and my appreciation for Ian Moss’s music hasn’t waned. I’ve seen him play entertainment centres and wineries, but I feel like intimate gigs at small venues are where Mossy really shines. So I knew I was in for a real treat when he brought his 10th Anniversary Six Strings Classics Tour to Gosford’s Laycock Street Theatre on Thursday night.
A short video reminded us of Mossy’s journey to the stage, his time growing up in Alice Springs and honing his craft as a member of Cold Chisel and as a solo musician, the key moments that brought him to us to kick-start our long weekend.
So it was fitting that he began the show not with an original but a cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Green River,” a bluesy song that no doubt influenced his own music. There was plenty of that to come, drawing from his Cold Chisel and solo years. While the hits went down a treat, I also appreciated that Mossy played lesser known songs too, like “Such a Beautiful Thing” from my beloved Matchbook album. The Chisel songs took on a new complexion stripped back, and that helped bring out the exceptional lyrics of Don Walker and dearly departed Steve Prestwich, who Mossy mentioned a few times during the set. I really loved his swampier take on “Flame Trees” was really special. A battle of the sexes sing-off made “Saturday Night” even more fun. Mossy declared it a draw, but I was sure we ladies out-sung the men in the crowd.
While this was largely a night of nostalgia, Ian Moss reminded us that his best music isn’t behind him. The second half of the night opened with a video of footage captured during recent recording sessions in Nashville. He played us a few songs that will feature on a new album, Nashville Sessions, due out later this year. The songs were beautiful, as good as anything he’s released in the past.
Ian Moss is an artist that continues to create wonderful music without forgetting the songs the people want to hear. His shows are a celebration of his musical legacy, and also a reminder that there’s plenty more to come. His 10th Anniversary Six Strings Classics Tour continues at the following venues. If he’s yet to visit your city, make sure you snap up one of the remaining tickets.
– Review courtesy – Lauren Katulka Sounds of Oz
Additional Photography © Bronwen Caple Photography