When Broods, the brother-sister duo from New Zealand, hit the scenes with “Bridges” last year, I was definitely intrigued. The tune (and its many remixes) was a common feature on my summer playlist but the question I was asking was: What’s next? So, when they hit again with “Never Gonna Change” and with their self-titled EP, I was sold.
I hit The Forum on Wednesday night, just four days after seeing another New Zealand sensation, Kimbra, and was bubbling with anticipation. They started things off with a popular hit, “Never Gonna Change”, but there was something almost nervous about Broods’ opening performance. Georgia was dancing around the stage, making it her own, but I felt a lack of confidence in the music. Whether this was due to inexperience or the fact that, as they later told us, it was the biggest show they’d ever done as a headliner, I was worried that this could be a theme throughout the evening.
My concerns lasted roughly ten seconds as they blasted into their second song, “Everytime”, with more energy and emotion. The harmonies between Georgia and her brother, Caleb, were beautiful while they finished with an epic lights out on stage. Things were only up from there, with “Killing You” providing something to bop along to, and the title track of their recent debut album, Evergreen, really hitting musically.
As good as their songs are, the highlight of the night was Caleb and his stories. He told us how he’d been to The Forum before to see Shapeshifter, only to be isolated by security because he was too drunk. When Georgia said that he hopefully wouldn’t be doing that on this night, he was quick to respond with “They can’t get me up here”.
Back to the music, Broods continued to impress, playing the upbeat “Taking You There” before the biggest cheer of the night came for their biggest hit, “Bridges”. “Hopefully you know this one,” they said as the crowd went wild, phone cameras appeared everywhere, and lights filled the stage. The hit managed to get some movement going but the Melbourne crowd was still fairly disappointing with their unwillingness to dance.
The amusing banter continued throughout, as Georgia commented on their “real talent to make every happy song sound sad” before leading into “Four Walls”. After the unreleased “Deep End” (which I would suggest you keep an eye and an ear out for), she commented “I like to imagine myself with two massive machines guns when singing that song” with “massive boobs”. Talking about the Transformers movie, she told us “that would be the soundtrack to that song”. Of course, as every good big brother would do, Caleb had to butt in: “‘Soundtrack to that song’… that doesn’t make sense. Let’s just play some more music because we can’t talk”, opening up the opportunity for the crowd to join in the banter, one guy adding “You’re from New Zealand!”
Quality banter aside, “Deep End” really exemplified Georgia’s vocal talents while “Pretty Thing”, one of my favourites, provided a dance beat to prompt the crowd and give them some energy. Finally, they said that “you guys are way more static than Sydney was”, giving us the incentive to really dance so we could outdo our rival city. For the first time all night, the crowd really got moving to “L.A.F” but the dancing on stage was even better, Georgia showing she can really move her hips. They finished with “Coattails”, which becomes a bit of an anthem when it gets to the chorus, before the lights went out, they said one last thank you, and walked off the stage.
Of course, they weren’t actually done, with the crowd chanting for an encore. “Oh shit, we forgot two songs”, Caleb joked as they played “Superstar” to a finally energised crowd. They then finished, for real this time, with another popular hit, “Mother & Father”, providing a heap of energy during the choruses. The performance was fantastic, with Broods showing that they earned their Breakthrough Artist of the Year award at the New Zealand Music Awards, and proving that they have what it takes to be the next big thing. Unfortunately, a lacklustre crowd gave them less than they deserved.
Hometown: Nelson, New Zealand
Latest Album: Evergreen, released 22 August 2014
Sounds like: Willow Beats, Purity Ring, Angus and Julia Stone
Say what? Read the 4th paragraph… TL;DR? Caleb was isolated by security in his only previous trip to The Forum for being too drunk. This time around, he was up on stage!
Never Gonna Change
Sleep Baby Sleep
Taking You There
Mother & Father