Friday night saw Brisbane’s Tivoli Theatre turned into a sugar filled ballroom ready for the most talented prom Queen. Jack River. She nailed this aesthetic to a T. You couldn’t miss fans dressed in extravagant ball gowns and tuxedos, or the giant disco ball hanging from the ceiling. The stage itself was covered head-to-toe in silver streamers, giving the room a shine, We’ve never seen at the Tivoli before. There was even a photo booth set up in the foyer with a professional photographer on stand-by. 10/10 for effort already!
Kicking off the show was San Mei, an up and coming artist from the Gold Coast. She delighted fans with popular tracks ‘Wonder’ and ‘Heaven, as an audience filled up the hall,fitting titles given the atmosphere of the venue. We’re interested to see what San Mei has in store for us next. Rising pop goddess Eves Karydas was another Queensland local to hit the stage. Her stage presence is known for capturing the attention of the room and certainly raised the energy levels in anticipation for the main act. Eves played her tried and true repertoire, including personal favourites ‘Couch’, ‘Damn Loyal’, and ‘Further than the Planes Fly’. She even pulled out her cover of Post Malone’s ‘Sunflower’- A crowd favourite for sure.
By the time Holly Rankin (a.k.a Jack River) took to the stage the venue was packed. Opening with her Fieldswas a great choice, it’s a song that builds start to finish. It had that Highschool/Teen Romcom vibe which was quite fitting. We heard all the favourites during her set including ‘Confess’, ‘Limo Song’, ‘Fools Gold’and her latest single ‘Adolescent’. She also performed her take on Savage Garden’s ‘Truly Madly Deeply’, which had aired on Triple J’s ‘Like a Version’ segment earlier that morning.
Now if you thought that shiny streamers, a giant disco ball, photo booth, and a crowd dressed for prom were enough for Jack River, think again. At the halfway point of the set, during her slower tune ‘In Infinity’, a fairy floss machine appeared on stage with crew whipping up sticks of fairy floss to be handed to fans by Jack River and her instrumentalist Xavier Dunn. Imagine a microphone in one hand and a giant stick of fairy floss in the other and that about sums up the Sugar Mountain experience.
After playing ‘Fools Gold’ the band walked off stage as Jack River claimed that was her last song. Of course, we all knew better and fans were demanding more, with the favourite, ‘Palo Alto’, still unperformed. Within seconds the entire band had returned to perform their two encore tracks. “That was the shortest gap between an encore I’ve ever seen!” a punter exclaimed, and I had to agree, begging the question what the point of an encore is anymore? Nonetheless, the show continued to the excitement of the crowd. ‘Nothing’s Gonna Hurt You Baby’ and‘Palo Alto’gave the fans the fix they needed, with the final song stuck in the heads of all the fans as they swarmed out of the venue.
This was the first show of the Sugar Mountain Tour and has set a high precedent for the remaining shows in Sydney, Freemantle, and Adelaide over the next two weekends. Jack River has lived up to her expectations to create a live “Sugar Mountain” and given her fans the prom night they’ll never forget.