The Teskey Brothers shone a light on the bright future for blues and soul music in Melbourne

Since releasing their self-produced debut LP Half Mile Harvest (a reference to the length of analogue tape used to record the album) The Teskey Brothers have become the discovered ‘undiscovered gem’ of the Melbourne music scene.
Jesse Valach presents Blues Mountain opened the night with the four-piece, that formed over a jam session in Elwood about three years ago, nailing the blues but probably being a bit too ‘daaaaaad’ to truly capture the audience.
For the main support, there was a throng of lurching and jiving punters in front of stage for The Sugarcanes. Front woman Lucy Wilson stalked the stage acknowledging each band member before she launched into the lung shuddering chorus of Never Call. It was set closer Oh Darling that set hearts a buzzing with its delicate tenderness. It was great to see Wilson lock-in with guitarist Alister Self, Will Bracks on keys, Jackie Wilson on bass, Lizzie Dynon on drums and saxophonist Chris Bevens for their cover of Van Morrison’s Domino.
The Van Morrison segue was apt, because it alluded to the power of a vocalist with a jaw-droppingly exquisite tone that draws in all within aural range: Josh Teskey’s opening phrasing to the opening song of the show, “Oh ya just plain mean to me woman / And that’s a crying crying shame,” dripped with such power. The chemistry between Teskey (vocals, rhythm and harmonica), his brother Sam (lead guitar) and high school friends Brendon Love (bass) and Liam Gough (drums) was mesmerizing. It elicited the romance of a bygone era when blues music heralded a meteoric shift in how recorded music was consumed.
For The Teskey Brothers headline shows, they perform with a horns section alongside Peter Golikov who plays a Hammond L100 through a whirling Leslie speaker. During the set, the latter instrument was the final cog in The Teskey Brothers’ incredible time machine that while paying a credible homage to the past, also shone a light on the bright future for blues and soul music in Melbourne.
Words by Dan Watt
Image by Al Parkinson
Highlight: Hammond L100 and Leslie Speaker.
Lowlight: Walking outside to come back into the bandroom because I didn’t realise the wall was a door.
Crowd Favourite: Pain and Misery.