The 12th of December was marked in diaries as the single launch of local siren Abbey May’s new offering from her forthcoming album. However, this was not to be any old single launch, this hometown debut of Doomsday Clock evolved in to what would become known as Clam Jam 2016. A showcase of incredible local talent to support the goddess herself, it went down at Jack Rabbit Slims last Friday evening.
Providing the warm up sounds for the evening were Perth newbies Bells Rapids, with help from other local gems Rag N’ Bone. Their beautiful sweet melodies over grungy pop rock painted a spacey dreamscape. They provided a whole lot of beautiful moody rock that quickly set the tone for the night ahead.
Abacaxuva proved that they were a hard to say, but easy to devour morsel. They offered up a serve of high energy, sprightly surf rock with bite. The front man Rex bounced around the stage like an aerobics instructor, a comparison made easier by the lead singers choice of spandex pants. The guy next to me muses that the front man sounds like Jim Morrison and Jack White in an echo chamber, and I cannot refute him.
Another ‘ham’ at the Clam Jam, Mr. Timothy Nelson, brings an alternative country sound to the evening. With his fresh guitar sounds and introspective lyrics, he produces folk music that is really easy listening.
Funk priestess Odette Mercy & Her Soul Atomics, dived right in to an explosive set of old groove rhythms. Odette commanded her audience with her vocal prowess, effortlessly slipping between slower jazzy numbers and belting some hard-hitting pieces on love and loss. Complete with trumpet and saxophone, her band proved both soulful and full of solos, with some exceptional showcases towards the end.
By the time Abbe May herself entered the stage Jack Rabbits was heaving with bodies, ready to hear some of the ‘doom pop’ sounds she has become known for. The set began with offerings from her most recent album including T.R.O.U.B.L.E, which showcased Mays incredible vocal range and the sexy down tempo Karmaggedon. By this point, May had the enamoured crowd deliriously swaying to the sounds of moody guitars and sultry smooth vocals. At this point it seemed right to ask the crowd through the medium of song, Are We Flirting?
New track Doomsday Clock was an ominous call to arms about the current state of the world. To unleash it May called upon a gospel choir made of local lovelies Joni Hogan, Odette Mercy and Grace Barbé. Towards the business end of her set, May seduced the crowds with her racy ‘Like a Version’ cover of Ginuwines’ Pony. A cover so good it had an entire club bumpin’ and grindin’ to the sound of sweet synth.
Abbe May rounded out her killer set with golden oldie Taurus Chorus. She took her last chance to wield her weapon at her enraptured audience while delivering the last of her screaming guitar hooks. The take home from Clam Jam 2016 was something we already knew to be true, Perth has a metric tone of musical talent to be revered and one it’s most precious is Abbe May.