Photos by Maren Farra
It was my second or third time seeing John Butler Trio and this time it was at the o2 Brixton Academy with a sold out crowd. Brett Dennen took the stage on acoustic guitar with another guitarist to warm up the crowd, which he did well. Incidentally, I did a session with Dennen the following day and saw close up what a talented songwriter he is.
The trio of band members were more than ready to take the stage and filled the venue with an incredible sound for a three piece band. This show felt like it had more of a loud and rocky edge to it compared to previous ones – a sign of a new direction perhaps? Maybe it is the influence of new band members that happens every now and again with JBT.
They still played all of the classics and popular tracks that the crowd really went there to hear. It was probably majority Aussies in the crowd so it would be silly not to please them! A few highlights for me was the awesome banjo hoe down intro to Better Than that looked improvised but was far too tight to be (surely!) and of course the always impressive, Ocean. It is a great masterpiece of acoustic composition and playing and different every time I hear it played live, which is probably what the crowd love about it so much.
It was a full house of very happy people by the end of the night, it was a great performance with heaps (!) of energy. Can’t wait to see them again next time, however different it may be!