There’s something to be said for the intimacy and vulnerability of a sit-down gig. Artists have nowhere to hide- allowing fans to appreciate their talent on another level and separating mediocre bands from stand-out talents. On Friday night at The Zoo, Peach Fur proved themselves beyond my wildest hopes. With a mixed crowd of long-time fans who know the words to every song and newer listeners, it’s safe to say everyone was wowed.
Peach Fur are a Gold Coast psych-surf rock band consisting of Denny Hidler (vocals and guitar), Liam Ward (vocals and bass), Ben Crichton (lead guitar) and Mikey Woodworth (drums). Together, these four mates create a trippy-hippy sound with a good dose of funk and blues.
The night was kicked off with an opening performance by Brisbane electro-pop group Feels Club. They delivered an energetic performance with synth-heavy tracks made for the dance floor. Feels Club left the crowd feeling hyped up and ready for the main attraction.
Peach Fur burst onto the stage flaunting eccentric outfits to match their free-spirited vibe. We’re talking cowboy vests, velvet, fedora hats, long hair and big grins. Liam thought he’d break the ice with a cheesy pun: “It looks like a zoo out there”. The first song of the night ‘Days Go By’, taken from the band’s first EP Pleasures & Necessities, was well-received by fans who loved hearing it just as much as they did five years ago.
“The next song is about love”, Liam shared as the band began to play ‘Preloved’ from their 2020 EP Awake. This was a true goosebumps moment as Denny delivered the opening line with chilling vocals: “Is it the change of life that we both need, it may break both our hearts and sow them”. Showing off their soft side, ‘Preloved’ is a gentle ode to a lost relationship.
Feeling the love, Denny complimented the “sick” crowd and Liam, once again with the puns, replied “I hope they’re not sick”. *ba dum tsss* He then lead us into the next song with a profound statement: “we’re all freeballin’ at heart”. Taken from their 2018 album Doreen Drive, ‘Freeballin’’ perfectly captures the bands laid back lifestyle.
Questioning “why the f*ck is there a keyboard here?” the band invite their good friend onto the stage to perform ‘Mumma G’ with them. The band worked in perfect harmony to deliver this surfy tune without a hitch, finishing with some incredible guitar work from Ben and Denny.
After asking “should we just play the next song and not say the title?” the band launched into ‘Aliens’. About embracing the unknown and expanding consciousness, hearing this tune live was a mind-bending experience.
The band announced it “cover time!” as Denny stepped into an alter ego to embody Jim Morrison for The Doors’ classic ‘Break On Through (To The Otherside)’. Strutting across the stage, Denny was oozing confidence and charisma. It was impossible not to sing along as he captivated the audience.
After performing ‘Does Matter Really Matter’, the band launched into a personal favourite ‘Funkn Oath’. Reminiscent of early Red Hot Chili Peppers, the bass takes centre stage to create a sound delivered from the funk gods. The on-stage chemistry and joy exchanged between Denny and Liam on this track was infectious.
Denny shared “the next song is about smoking bongs” with a cheeky grin. ‘Alpaca Roma’ was a heavy head-banger to switch up the pace. The band's ability to switch up their style whilst remaining authentic is something to behold.
Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end as the final song of the set was announced. Peach Fur finished off with the fun, chaotic and unconventional track ‘Butter Don Won Tu’. Featuring an impressive drum solo from Mikey, this one was so much fun to be apart of. The band thanked us and headed off stage, leaving everyone ecstatic and wanting more.
It was a privilege to witness the moments and chemistry the band shared with each other and the crowd. Seeing these guys again for a full moshing experience has already been added to the bucket list. We’ll be non-stop streaming their March EP Awake until they channel their incredible talents to create some more magic.