Thursday, November 19, 2020

MEET... Confidence Man

If you want a band that give you great tunes, electric performance and an attitude like no other, Confidence Man is the group for you. The pseudonymised Melbourne/Brisbane quartet consists of Janet Planet and Sugar Bones as the fabulous front pair, with Clarence McGuffie and Reggie Goodchild as the rock-steady back-line drum and keys combo. Forming in 2016 with the mix of a live experience like no other and catchy music, their mission to be the party band of the summer is comfortably and, dare I say it, confidently attained.

Their 2018 debut album, Confident Music for Confident People, was highly anticipated. Having released only singles with accompanying music videos up until that point, Confidence Man were setting the scene for their zealous style and confident demeanour as a collective well before establishing a more global presence. Upon the release of their debut, the band went on a summer festival tour of Europe and the US, where Sugar and Janet described Europe as more open to their music and people dancing in hot-pants on stage - something they subsequently worried about where the US was concerned.

Perfectly blending stage eccentricity with studio work that'll force you to dance anywhere, Confidence Man is a band dead-set on creating an experience as well as enjoyment. Drawing inspiration from the likes of David Byrne of Talking Heads fame, Confidence Man have an ethos of: "not giving it all away at the start, you should slowly start to build up the momentum, increasing the intensity" - at least that's how leading lady, Janet Planet explains it. Filled with homemade choreography and accessorised light shows, they will never - and I say that with my chest - never disappoint. When you go to a gig, how do you rate it? Do you solely judge the music they are performing or how they perform it? After asking myself these questions, I started to rethink every live performance I had ever seen - and let me tell you, some of the shows I once deemed spectacular quickly became nothing more than an average concert. Would you be surprised to hear it was Confidence Man that rocked my live-show boat?

It is rare these days that you see a band where every member of the band has a pseudonym. Upon further investigation, Clarence McGuffie and Reggie Goodchild are both established members of alternate Aussie rock bands and so choose to be anonymous, not only in name but also in person by donning black bee-keeper veils whilst performing. Janet Planet and Sugar Bones are less secretive, however. Despite Planet describing their real personalities being far from their stage personas, it seldom shows in their performances. (p.s. after doing a lot of digging, I did find out all of their real identities - I will not lie, it was a feat, they have done a fantastic job of retaining anonymity)

Due to their UK label being the esteemed Heavenly Recordings, the band's music has been remixed by the likes of Greg Wilson, and the late Andrew Weatherall. These singles include "Out The Window" (Andrew Weatherall) and "Does It Make You Feel Good?" (Greg Wilson). Also, Confidence Man has remixed music for Halifax's own, The Orielles, with "Bobbi's Second World".

Confidence Man is a force to be reckoned with, especially as their new (non-album) singles are released. Their latest, First Class Bitch, is seemingly a step in a more direct and less-big beat-y style for the group. I, for one, am wholeheartedly excited to see what these Aussie delights are going to produce for us; particularly for the all-important live shows. 

As it stands, Confidence Man have delayed all of their shows back until April 2021 due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. But rest assured, not only will they be busy creating music between now and then, but they will also be preparing to make a show so memorable you'll be thinking about it until the next time you see them. After buying your ticket (which are all still available to purchase), it is a requirement by law* to listen to their entire discography - start to finish, back to back - until you attend that show. If you think I've hyped this up too much, you're wrong.

So, if you didn't know, hopefully now you do. Confidence Man is your newest musical adventure. I swear you will not regret it. 

*not really, but is recommended.

- Charlie Cowburn

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