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Streets Ahead

Streets Ahead

Who: Powderfinger, John Butler Trio, The Tremors
Where: Newcastle Entertainment Centre
When: Wednesday December 10, 2003

POWDERFINGER has proved that it can do no wrong in 2003.

The band cleaned up at this year's ARIA awards, walking away with four awards including Album of the Year for VULTURE STREET.

It also won Best Rock Album and Best Group, taking its entire ARIA award win total up to 13.

Without a doubt, Powderfinger has clearly established itself as one of the most successful Australian rock bands of the past decade with more than 1.

5 thmillion in album sales.

Such popularity has placed the band in high demand and it will kick off a national tour in Perth next week to perform its first dates in large capacity venues.

Powderfinger bassist JOHN COLLINS said the band was anticipating the chance to play before large crowds.

``We just want to go full steam ahead when we start the Australian tour,'' Collins said.

``This is the first time we have done such big venues so we're looking forward to it because stylistically it changes the show and that's what we're looking forward to because it will be a challenge.

'' Luckily, the band already had the chance to face the challenge when it played before a 16,000-strong crowd at Singleton in July.

Held as part of the SPLENDOUR COMES TO YOU competition run by TRIPLE J, Collins said the show was an inspiring night for the band.

``It was awesome play, the show at Singleton, because there were about 16,000 people there,'' Collins said.

``We were pretty surprised by the turnout because it was just amazing to rock up to a country town and have such support there.

``I grew up in a country town as well and I remember when WA WA NEE came to my town that it was the hugest thing and I wasn't even a Wa Wa Nee fan.

'' From Singleton, the next run of dates saw the band toured throughout New Zealand and Europe before returning home for LIVE ON VULTURE STREET.

The tour marks Powderfinger's first major tour in almost two years and follows the release of the album Vulture Street which has seen the band return to its roots.

Powderfinger is renowned for its powerful rock ballads but Vulture Street spelled a stark change with the inclusion of several hard-hitting rock tracks.

The album not only proved to be a hit with fans and with the band itself.

``Vulture Street was a lot more fun in the studio to record than the last album,'' Collins said.

``We decided to go a bit rockier on this album because that is where we came from when we first started playing together and we just felt like going back there.

'' Collins said the band also wanted to record a few tracks that could spice up its live show.

``When we were touring overseas we thought that it would be nice to have some more rock stuff so we decided to make a rock record.

'' Collins said the tour will cover the new album as well as a broad spectrum of the band's back catalogue, which includes past hits like MY HAPPINESS, THE DAY YOU COME and PASSENGER.

``The tour will mix up a bit of everything.

I think it would be wrong for us just to play the new album,'' he said.

``We just want to make it entertaining and fun so that people can walk away and say that they enjoyed themselves.

'' Live On Vulture Street will bring Powderfinger to NEWCASTLE ENTERTAINMENT CENTRE on December 10 with support from the JOHN BUTLER TRIO and THE TREMORS.

For bookings, call TICKETEK on 4921 2121.

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