Words by Hannah Lally
In their first sold-out gig in Adelaide, Cub Sport packed a huge live show in on Saturday that escalated into an incredible performance of their massive, quirky potential.
Just a couple of months ago, the Brissy locals announced their first Aussie headline tour in three years. Having already sold out in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, the band’s recent Like A Version of Kanye West’s 'Ultralight Beam' sky-rocketed their popularity around the country, with possibly the best cover of the year. The triple j air-time made sure even their little Adelaide show sold out, and it was clear the foursome were grateful from the outset.
Cosy Jive filled out with those eager to see fellow Brisbane support, Clea, whose lush vocals and enchanting instrumentation captivated the crowd. Clea’s cover of the Stranger Things’ theme song, ‘Crimson In Clover’ was a magical and haunting reminiscent of the original’s Joan Jett, before the triple j hit ‘Dire Consequences’ pulled stragglers in with its irresistible and whirling folk pop.
With sheepish grins meeting the screams as they entered, Cub Sport kicked off with the fluttering summery track, ‘Sun’, from their debut album This Is My Vice released earlier this year. The band’s hotly anticipated new material has not disappointed, with its breezy synth pop energy to burn packed with simple, yet dynamic rhythm and introspection.
Their quirky brand of pop continued in ‘Stay’ and synth hit, ‘I Can’t Save You’, before ‘Vice’ brought lead singer Tim Nelson out from behind his guitar to approach the crowd with his loveable, dorky dance moves. Though the first few songs started a little reserved, as soon as the band saw how many of their Adelaide fans were singing along, everyone warmed up to a groovy and intensely fun mess.
‘Do you guys know this is our first ever sold-out concert in Adelaide?’ Tim says after the huge reaction from ‘It Kills Me’ and haunting ‘Only Friend’. Cub Sport play with an understated confidence, though they’re still humbled by their increasing popularity as slowly, they let the smiles spread across their faces when the beaming crowd mirrors their lyrics and pulsing energy.
After their electric new hits, Cub Sport covered Talking Heads’ ‘Stay Up Late’ with their own upbeat charm, before unleashing older favourites from their time as Cub Scout. Long-time fans loved the resurgence of ‘Told You So’ and their first-ever track, ‘Evie’, which showcased keyboardist Sam Netterfield’s passionate dance moves and Zoe Davis’ quiet fire on electric guitar.
Upon the first twinkling synth notes, the crowd lost control and it was clear everyone was there to hear the mesmerising and tender newest hit ‘Come On Mess Me Up’. The insane reaction continued with every beat of the audience attempting to match Tim’s stunning vocals, as all hearts poured themselves out, leaving the band speechless and visibly moved.
It was only their famed Like A Version which could match the roaring response, as every member of the four-piece gave their best performance, bringing the crowd to tears with their beauty and leaving everyone on an ‘Ultralight Beam’ dream.
From their infectious newbies of their latest record, to Cub Scout originals, new bangers like ‘Come On Mess Me Up’ and breathtaking covers, Cub Sport gave an unmissable show as one of Australia’s best indie collectives.
Follow Cub Sport on Insta - @cubsport