I’m going to say it: supergroups should be cool. The thing is that they fail to deliver so often, for whatever reason, that it’s truly hard to get excited when good musicians get together. Wednesday night’s single launch at The Worker’s Club proved Dorsal Fins both fit the definition of a supergroup and live up to the expectation of quality a label like that implies.

After a last minute cancellation by advertised support act Broadway Sounds, Rob Muinos opened up the show with a solo set. Playing the first few by himself with just his guitar, harmonica and impressive voice, he created an intimate experience for the crowd and captured them quite quickly. As he brought fellow Saskwatch members Olaf Scott and Tom Pettit out on stage to jump on keys and bass respectively, Rob informed the crowd that they were “a little in shock because we only found out about this gig an hour ago.” After one more song, Rob brought out Jim Lawrie to jump on the drums and backing vocals and, despite an anecdote about Jim only having rehearsed with them once months ago, the four piece were tight and the music became much fuller with the whole band combined. As penance for being called in at such late notice, Rob brought most of Dorsal Fins out to help on one song, before stripping it right back again for the closer. While it may not have been planned, it certainly made for a good warm up.

With half of the support band in the main act there wasn’t a lot of changeover required so the break between bands was, or at least seemed, incredibly short. With some disco fanfare Dorsal Fins made their way onto the stage and opened with a high energy party track. Vocalists Ella Thompson and Jarrad Brown led the all-star ensemble for the first two tracks before Jim Lawrie and Phil Gionfrido came out to do some vocals briefly. The 8 piece band all seemed to really lock into the groove of the 80s inspired sounds and they sounded fantastic, especially when you consider it was their “third gig ever.”

The two previously released songs ‘Nothing Left To Hide’ and ‘Fell’ both had the crowd enraptured, and new single ‘Monday Tuesday’ was another highlight in a set that had very little, if anything, to complain about. The rhythm section were phenomenal, and the horns really helped emphasise the 80s feel of the tracks. What might have initially been Liam McGorry’s ‘answer’ to Gorillaz (both in sound and musical concept, though with less animation) seems to have blossomed into a true collaborative effort and it showed in the performance. This band can and, dare I say, will go far, if they want to.

Wes Fahey

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