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6 September, 2019

Promises a spiritual experience, but won't quite take you to church

On Friday night, Australian dance music legend Groove Terminator took to the stage, supported by talented singers from the Gospo Collective and Brisbane’s Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts.

Featuring guest soloists and DJ sets, the roof of the Tivoli was more than ready to be raised.

There was an infectious energy to the room, with DJ Black Amex, Josh Abrahams, and Paul Mac offering up sets either side of the main event, and by the time Groove Terminator and his gospel choir hit the stage, the crowd was ready to party.

Backed by impressive visuals, and with a talented group of performers singing and dancing their way through a medley of tracks, it was a huge amount of fun, but not quite the spiritual experience promised.

The expectation was for something a little darker, a little grander, and it became hard to see the gospel choir as much more than backing singers.

They were ready to take us to church, but we never quite got there, and though there’s cheers and applause every time the choir take to the stage, they’re more just a complement to the music, rather than the stars you might expect them to be.

Groove Terminator is, of course, the main draw, but the choir needed a little more opportunity to shine. Perhaps I’m a little spoiled here, coming into this just a few weeks after seeing Synthony – an astounding combination of dance music and a live orchestra that I’m still showing people videos of nearly a month later – but I certainly expected a little more from something with such a high billing at Brisbane Festival.

A little less “Church of House” and more “House Party” it’s still a tremendous night and, as the old saying goes, a little party never killed nobody.