From the moment he stepped on stage wearing a t-shirt, high-waisted blue wash denim jeans and his acoustic guitar, he had the audience captivated. As he plucked his guitar and started to sing, opening the show with a solo, acoustic song, it was one of those moments where you look at the person next to you and say ‘wow’. His strong, resonant voice filled the room, occasionally slipping into a breathtaking falsetto.
A natural and gifted story teller, the 23 year old Didirri spoke with a loveable Australian accent – the type of accent that would make you feel like you were at home no matter where in the world you were.
As for those of us at The Brightside seeing the show as part of Didirri’s Formaldehyde Tour, it would be impossible to leave this show without hearing a nugget of truth that spoke directly to each person in one way or another.
Each song was given grand meaning through the way he shared upbeat advice or described his life experiences. He struck a delicate balance of humour and seriousness as he chatted to the audience about all things ranging from his distrust of hairdressers (“not as people – just don’t touch my hair”) to the importance of having empathy. He introduced one song by describing his propensity to stretch the truth as a younger fellow (‘to sound more exciting’). He ends this story by saying ‘be honest, it’s fucking important,’ before launching into beautifully poetic lyrics describing dishonesty as ‘it’s like those extra notes you didn’t have to play’.
His band certainly didn’t play any extra notes with every arrangement doing the song great justice. Just when it seemed as though it wasn’t possible for any more emotion to be poured into the song, the band would continue to build the intensity before seamlessly scaling back to an acoustic feel. The sound was emotive, even bordering on intense at times, as well as featuring tasty, soulful guitar solos and even a hint of slide guitar – all whilst somehow retaining the intimacy of a singer/songwriter gig.
“Tonight is the single greatest achievement of my life”, he exclaims before going on to describe his merchandise. “…because I made socks!” The merch table truly was the icing on top of an already very delicious cake. Aside from his socks (the thick, comfortable, but breathable looking kind), he also sells tea towels and t-shirts.
As he played fan favourite ‘Jude’, he swapped the hand claps and piano (that are featured in the recorded version) for cymbals and lightly distorted guitars in the heavier moments of the track. As the song faded down to an acoustic guitar and vocal, the crowds’ voices echoed throughout the room in perfect unison, squeezing out even more magic from this electrical evening. A truly memorable gig.
You can catch more of Didirri as part of his ‘Formaldehyde Tour’ (Unless sold out in your city). Check it out on didirri.com/tour