23 Feb 2019

Remember Me? | Join | Recover
Click here to sign in via social networking
  • Articles »
  • Reviews »
  • Jessy & The Volunteers - Gig Review: Jessy & the Volunteers @ Anthology Lounge, Auckland - 24/08/2018

Jessy & The Volunteers - Gig Review: Jessy & the Volunteers @ Anthology Lounge, Auckland - 24/08/2018

30 Aug 2018 // A review by butch181

Anthology Lounge is one of the newest kids on the block in regards to gig venues in Auckland City, and the vibe inside is relaxed. Set up with a series of circular booths and tables, the scene is set up more for seated affairs, than jamming people together in the standing area in front of the stage. While quite dark and intimate in terms of the lighting, there is a good level of white light to go with the cyan and magenta that gives good visibility of those performing at the front of stage. 

The honour of starting the night’s festivities came in the form of Geoff Ong and his band. Beginning with a riff reminiscent of Jet’s Are You Gonna Be My Girl, Ong’s musical style actually touches many musical genres. With an almost surf rock and lounge hybrid sound in some songs, others come across more soulful or retro 80’s inspired. With a very smooth clean vocal style, Ong has an upbeat groove that could rival Jamiroquai. Geoff Ong and the band performed a mix set of originals and covers; Stevie Wonder’s Superstition, Amy Winehouse’s Valerie being the more well-known additions to the set list that speak to the style you would expect from an Ong performance. 

Ong is very charismatic, and enjoys bantering with the crowd, encouraging them to come forward and offering tid-bits of trivia relating to the tracks on their set list, though some could say he was a little bit overzealous in some situations feeling the need to constantly remind the crowd who he was. With his higher tremolo vibrato vocal style, Geoff’s melodies remind me of Thomas Oliver, and it works together very well with the rhythm section of the band. There are some nice technical guitar pieces inputted into each track, but it never takes away from the soothing ebb and flow of the tracks.

But we were there for the headliners. The entire night was put forth to launch the debut single of Jessy & the Volunteers. The five-piece have an intriguing set-up if only because of Siaosi Nash’s instrument that consisted of a laptop/keyboard amalgamation. Frontwoman Jessy Wadeson comes up on stage, front and centre, and is dressed to impress; sporting a fur coat, hat and glasses, she exhibits bravado and confidence right from the get-go. Clicking her fingers, she signals the start of the set and the band comes in with a funky soul sound. Wadeson has a gritty grain of quality to her vocals, along the lines of Gin Wigmore and Amy Winehouse. 

While an intriguing mix in sound that is currently underrepresented in the music scene, the performance felt like it was holding back instrumentally. A definite disconnect between Jessy and her Volunteers, the band remain static and separated from the performance while the frontwoman shimmies and moves around on stage in the spotlight. As the set progresses, Wadeson switches between simply singing and having dual responsibilities on the guitar, eventually removing the fur coat as the night continues, revealing a brilliantly eye-catching sequinned outfit.

The mix wasn’t quite optimal with Naua’s keys barely audible, but there was still an innate rhythm and groove. Even with the lackadaisical pace, the crowd were having a great time up front and dancing throughout much of the set. The band really shone when the pace picked up and they got to showcase their technical skills. Julian Green on the drums, in particular, looked like he was really feeling the pace and pulse of each track, and demonstrated great skill with some tight rolls and trills. 

Some tracks coming off with an Alicia Keys vibe to it, there is definitely a bluesy R&B/soul vibe, and Wadeson definitely has the presence of a solo performer. Playing through Nightwatch towards the end of the set, Wadeson bantered with the crowd about how she hadn’t memorised the lyrics to their last song yet and had written them on her arm. Playing through, it was obvious that the arm didn’t help in the end, but she laughed it off and continued on. Closing off the set with a long instrumental and placing the spotlight on each of the band members is a classic way to end the set. But alas that was not the case.

After finishing the track and thanking everyone, the crowd (who had reverted to socialising at the bar) were made aware that the band were waiting for a chant for an encore performance; perhaps best to save the long instrumental and thanking the band members until the encore in future performances. Starting their encore performance anyway, Jessy & the Volunteers ended the night with The Firewood Song.

Review written by Alex Moulton.
Photos provided by Alex Moulton.


About Jessy & The Volunteers

Jessy & the lads are creating the future of NZ soul/rnb music. 100% original tight tunes grown organically in their Grey Lynn basement ... This sexy, bluesy meld of funk, rock, rnb and soul will have you screwing your nose up with pleasure & sinking your hips so far into the ground, you might break your knees.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Jessy & The Volunteers


There are no releases to display for Jessy & The Volunteers.

Other Reviews By butch181

Paper Cranes - Album Review: Voices
19 Dec 2018 // by butch181
Due for release January 18, 2019, Voices is the second full-length album from Indie Folk duo Paper Cranes. While comprised of ten tracks, the album has a short overall runtime of just over 35 minutes.
This Pale Fire - Single Review: Float Out
17 Dec 2018 // by butch181
Float Out is about the process of letting things go, moving forward, learning from your past experiences, growing as a result. As such, the track has an intrinsically emotional weight to it.
EP Review: Miller Yule Live
17 Dec 2018 // by butch181
Miller Yule Live is a good length EP, consisting of seven tracks with a total runtime of over 30 minutes. Performing a setlist that is mostly sourced from his 2016 EP Shoot Me In The Heart (reviewed here), Miller Yule has also added in his single Diamonds (released in November 2017 and reviewed here), a stripped down adaptation of Six60's Don't Give It Up, and a new track to spice it up further.
Mako Road - EP Review: Local Safari
10 Dec 2018 // by butch181
Local Safari is the latest release from Christchurch Indie group Mako Road The four-piece provide a very laid-back and relaxed (albeit short) EP as we enter the prime summer road tripping season.The EP begins with its titular track Local Safari, with some pleasant keys and a generally unhurried pace, controlled by a simple hi hat and snare drum combo.
Kerretta - Single Review: Chroma Queens
10 Dec 2018 // by butch181
Chroma Queens is the first single from upcoming LP release Exiscens (due for release on December 14), which is the first release from Auckland experimental rock act Kerretta for over four years. The band are comprised of bass player William Waters; drummer H.
Gig Review: Ghost Who Walks @ Anthology Lounge, Auckland - 30/11/2018
06 Dec 2018 // by butch181
Cheers and squeals are let out around Auckland’s Anthology Lounge as The Rubics take to the stage. The six-piece group have been working on making a name for themselves as the groove-makers of the Auckland scene, and from the sound of the audience, they know exactly what they are in for.
Gig Review: 2Cellos @The Civic, Auckland - 3/12/2018
04 Dec 2018 // by butch181
People were abuzz as they filed into The Civic to get to their seats. Many eyes were enjoying the venue itself as one of Auckland’s last remaining atmospheric theatres, with its soft-top design that floats above the auditorium, with stars and clouds that recreate the Southern Hemisphere sky-scape.
Lisa Crawley - Single/Video Review: Baby It's Fine
30 Nov 2018 // by butch181
Lisa Crawley’s latest single Baby It’s Fine is a delightfully unhurried and soulful pop track. Starting with a slow strum of the guitar and an almost acoustic vibe to the bass, there is a slow melancholic edge to the song.
View All Articles By butch181

NZ Top 10 Singles

  • 7 RINGS
    Ariana Grande
    Ariana Grande
    Billie Eilish
  • WOW.
    Post Malone
    Post Malone And Swae Lee
    Ariana Grande
    Ava Max
    Lady Gaga And Bradley Cooper
    Sam Smith And Normani
View the Full NZ Top 40...
muzic.net.nz Logo
100% New Zealand Music
All content on this website is copyright to muzic.net.nz and other respective rights holders. Redistribution of any material presented here without permission is prohibited.
Report a ProblemReport A Problem