You couldn’t argue with the setting, for a start. What a nice afternoon for it! The Freo Doctor was whipping in from Rotto; the sun was hiding just behind the clouds, ready to drop onto the horizon; and the deep blue sea was heaving in weird synchronicity with the towering whacky waving inflatable arm-flailing tube men either side of the refreshingly small main stage.
Whitest Boy Alive could not have asked for a better timed set. Against a fucking magnificent sunset this band of understated Norwegian indie-dance-rock crossover weirdos played the crowd like a genius.
Mostly shoeless and partially shirtless, the punters rose and fell almost on cue -- lulled into a false sense of security then skewed sidewise once or twice… just enough to keep ‘em on edge before dropping back into groove like nothing happened.
As the sky turned crimson and the production lights crept into action, one increasingly admired the sublime nature of it all - and just when one’s mind began to wander, singer/guitarist Erlend Øye came out of his reserved little shell and got the crowd clapping… before dropping 2006’s Burning, at just the right moment, to a truly pumped reception.
And so on. Seriously, everything about this was so well done - emphatic proof that the big guys might be struggling, but the niche market dances on.