posted on March 21, 2013 at 5:24 pm
read shift

read shift


today i listened to the church at the opera house

itll be coming out soon

its pretty fucking good

i didnt think we could capture it but there it is

everybody is playing a blinder

never heard peter play more explosively yet incisively

the band sound like a real band

the only ever problem is my voice

but even that is mainly (mainly) in tune

sometimes i dont get everything right

you can hear me lose my way a few times

exhaustion had set in by this stage

but i fought valiantly on even tho i was knackered beyond belief

the orchestra sounds incredible

words fail me

what a catalogue what a sound what a performance

theres a lot going on over 24 odd songs

fuck its good

i never thought a live album for us was right

till i heard this

accomplished yet still rocking

rough and smooth at the same time

maybe our definitive document

great cross section of stuff too

great to see so many songs from U23

i wish you all had it right now!

soon they tell me soon…and dvd too…..


but there

we can play live

we had 80 odd people all playing at once

its huge

much bigger than ben hur and twice as rockin’!

38 Responses to “church at SOH 2011”

  1. avatar
    david | 21 March 2013 at 5:57 pm #

    jokes , majik, and after everything now this,,..cant wait!

  2. avatar
    eekie | 21 March 2013 at 6:02 pm #

    Album and dvd? That would be fantastic!
    I find I don’t watch a dvd of a live gig all that often (that doesn’t mean I don’t want it though), but I’ll listen to a good live album many, many times.
    the church firing on all cylinders live…that’s pretty much the most fun you can have with your clothes on!

  3. avatar
    Gold Coast Jamesey | 21 March 2013 at 6:51 pm #

    What you say about the SOH performance is true. I was there. It was powerful, precise and beautiful all at once. I’ve seen you guys 40 plus times and I think you sang as well as I can remember. You all played so cleanly. To me Church music was always constructed using the same layered soundscape methodology used by symphonic compostions so it is no surprise that you sounded so perfect with an orchestra. Fabulous arrangements. I have the Music Max edit of the SOH performance on my hardrive and it gets better with each listen. I think you are right, perhaps the Church’s definitive document. Can’t wait for the DVD and audio copy. You must be proud.

  4. avatar
    andy | 21 March 2013 at 6:59 pm #

    can’t wait to get my mits on it!
    rebirth rather than swansong though i hope………..

  5. avatar
    Dave B | 21 March 2013 at 7:54 pm #

    Hey Steve,

    From the footage viewed online so far, this is indeed (in my humble opinion as a 33 year fan of the band) up there with the return of Bowie as the most welcome and exciting music event of 2013…cannot wait!!!

    Any chance it will be out on Blu Ray? Would love to see this in Hi-def.


  6. avatar
    Alex | 21 March 2013 at 7:54 pm #

    I flew into Sydney yesterday . You mean I missed your gig at SOH? – – – – ! And hell!

  7. avatar
    Pickle | 21 March 2013 at 8:27 pm #

    Undoubtably the best live show i have ever seen the church play….and i have seen many…i was in Vietnam on holidays when the concert occurred…. Was disappointed to miss it but awesome holiday. I remember one night when it was replayed on max (aussie cable tv music show)….man i was soooooo blown away by the whole shebang….the lighting…the stage…oh man the sound…George and his friends were just too good for words…..i just thought it was great recognition for a band like the church to be given the opportunity to perform on such an elegant stage….a band whom i believe have been underrated throughout their career..finally (not earned),but afforded the right to display their magic in such a prestigious venue…..and …they absolutely nailed it!………anchorage the highlight

  8. avatar
    skyintheairwaves | 21 March 2013 at 9:49 pm #

    Can’t wait, Steve. There is no dichotomy, no dualism between rough and smooth. It’s all the paradoxes that sum up The Church!

  9. avatar
    Paul | 21 March 2013 at 10:20 pm #

    Can’t wait to hear this! I hope you are happy as this sounds like such an accomplishment!

  10. avatar
    Henry | 21 March 2013 at 11:58 pm #

    Dear Mr.Kilbey, when a DVD with a live performance of the Church?, your voice is great, but your charisma on stage complements everything. Regards from Perú!

  11. avatar
    seoigh | 22 March 2013 at 1:29 am #

    The last few times I’ve seen the Church play live, your sound was much improved over the first few times I heard you… amplification technology being so much better, and all. In terms of timbre, yours is a voice best sung at lower volumes with a lot of compression to bring it up in the mix — that is something hard for baritones to remember to do in a live setting. Being at a mic, one tends to react to the emotional level of the guitars and drums by straining the voice. That works for a lot of voices — but not ones like yours. You seem to understand that much more these days; but of course I’ve not heard this latest set yet. I’ll look forward to its arrival.

    Hope you dig the cover of It’s No Reasons on my site. It’s gone over well form the few who’ve listened.

  12. avatar
    seoigh | 22 March 2013 at 1:43 am #

    And a DVD, too? Fun.

  13. avatar
    hippy | 22 March 2013 at 3:19 am #

    Nice. Looking forward to it.

    Did the Church record their live performances back in the 80’s? Any archival tapes that could possibly be released someday? Only one I have is an ’88 show at The Ritz NYC. Always wished I had more like it (but with better sound quality of course). A box set of archive shows would be a dream come true!

  14. avatar
    Steven Krut | 22 March 2013 at 3:23 am #

    It’s a mystery to every Church fan why the Opera House concert has never been made available. I know a version was broadcast on TV in Australia. Maybe a certain period of exclusivity was sold with those rights? Anyway, its elusiveness has only made it more desirable. It’s the Holy Grail that always escapes one’s grasp. It’s always just around the corner that never gets turned. It’s good that it’s coming out as an album as well as a DVD (allegedly) because if it’s as good as you say it is it will fulfill critics’ post-U#23 expectations and perhaps allow the next studio album (if there is one) to be judged on its own merits.

  15. avatar
    Kohl Ette | 22 March 2013 at 6:50 am #

    I think a few things are adapting for the best in contemporary music, a couple being: not only are great bands like the Church able to encompass classical elements but classical music and musicians are expanding to encompass rock elements. I think there’s less of a defined line between genres and that makes me happy.

  16. avatar
    Trevor \|/ | 22 March 2013 at 9:26 am #

    What fantastic news to wake up to. This has made my day. I’ve been hanging out for this DVD+CD since news broke that it was filmed back in 2010. I will definitely be buying a copy, and several others, as I have a long list of friends that will be recieving it as a birthday/christmas/any occasion present!!!

    Thanks Steve, Marty, Tim, Pete, Mr Ellis & the 60+ members of the orchestra (and of course the film crew) for making it all happen.

    Trevor \|/

  17. avatar
    Trevor \|/ | 22 March 2013 at 9:28 am #

    What fantastic news to wake up to. This has made my day. I’ve been hanging out for this DVD+CD since news broke that it was filmed back in 2011. I will definitely be buying a copy, and several others, as I have a long list of friends that will be recieving it as a birthday/christmas/any occasion present!!!

    Thanks Steve, Marty, Tim, Pete, Mr Ellis & the 60+ members of the orchestra (and of course the film crew) for making it all happen.

    Trevor \|/

  18. avatar
    Michel | 22 March 2013 at 9:57 am #

    I don’t know why The Church never had a live album. 33 years !
    Anyway, listening to the bootleg version of SOH I have, it’s worth the wait.
    And there is “Lost” (with extra lyrics in the end…), and there is “disillusionist”, and there is an unreleased cover (“Mr Guy Fawkes”), and there is…yes, what a catalogue !

  19. avatar
    simon | 22 March 2013 at 10:54 am #

    an amazing night – one i’ll never forget – Essendon playing a blinder and beating the Saints, I got to meet Simon Day – and the church playing with a 70 piece orchestra – witnessing Happy Hunting Ground with the footage of the band playing in the background was goddamn emotional – honoured to have been there that night – once again, a night i’ll never forget – and so im very happy to hear this news – can’t wait to relive it.

  20. avatar
    sunny day | 22 March 2013 at 11:03 am #

    great news, this stuff is hard to pull off, glad you like the final product, a bigger sound than glenn miller on a 78

  21. avatar
    nick | 22 March 2013 at 11:46 am #

    Marty- once he changed his shirt to obligatory black- then played like Marty can!

  22. avatar
    Stephend2112 | 22 March 2013 at 12:25 pm #

    Tantalised is the only footage I’ve seen but if this represents the quality overall, it’s going to be a real treat. The performance, sound quality and look are all top notch!

  23. avatar
    mem | 22 March 2013 at 4:47 pm #

    …got my passport in order on short notice just so I could fly out to catch that gig… fortune although would have otherwise… yet still got the passport… and my trip down under is long past due… although I suspect I might just want to take up residency… why would I ever want to leave… I imagine… I could live out my life by the sea w/ paint brush in hand… just putting it out there…

  24. avatar
    Ingrid | 22 March 2013 at 7:58 pm #

    Fantastic news!!!! I can’t wait for the Opera House DVD. It was sheer pleasure to watch The Church and The George Ellis Orchestra perform together (an absolute amazing combination. A stunning concert both musically and visually complimented by an extraordinary venue.

  25. avatar
    vitrack | 22 March 2013 at 10:14 pm #

    Can wait, but I need that DVD + the promised live Starfish/P=A/U#23 DVD set sooner or later.

  26. avatar
    robin danar | 23 March 2013 at 1:51 pm #

    i love the comments by seoigh and hope i was involved. all i know is that this is “one that got away” when it came to working with you and i’m so psyched for the release. i’ve been lucky to be there for a ton of shows, but this could be the cream of the crop.

  27. avatar
    Damodadevo | 24 March 2013 at 10:18 am #

    Thank the lord! I was there in front row and had the best gig of my life. So amazing….Black Caviar in the afternoon,then on to the gig.Great start,Metropolis intro done beautifully then into it…unbelievable.
    Slight drizzle outside at intermission, lovely large spliff with wife on Opera House concourse on our own…can one get any higher? …back inside for wonderful, exciting, ‘trippy in its magnificence’ performance of power and subtlety wrapped in one hell of a timeless catalogue.Have been hanging for this and thanks so much for it all, organising, filming with such quality and grace and of course the professional at the highest level performance Lifelong thanks to Steve Marty Pete Tim and all the others.Brilliant brilliant brilliant brilliant.

  28. avatar
    veleska1970 | 24 March 2013 at 11:45 am #

    Can’t wait.

  29. avatar
    Kraig | 24 March 2013 at 8:23 pm #

    For some reason i can’t login to your site? Anyway, CANNOT WAIT TO GET AHOLD OF THIS DVD and CD of that SHOW! Just goes to show (no pun intended) that The Church STILL HAVE IT IN THEM! Shouldn’t quit! You guys were/are ON TOP!


  30. avatar
    Sara Clark | 25 March 2013 at 5:28 pm #

    Can’t wait SK 🙂

  31. avatar
    Anonymous | 25 March 2013 at 9:45 pm #


    I’ve been checked out for awhile here. And checked in to less important things. your band the church is incredible, don’t let it slip into past tense. music was always meant to be played live. just ask bob.

    love your new stuff too.

    but something special about the church, binds it all together, and melding of special talents.

    rock on.

    you are young. despite your teeth. please bring it back to the States.

    Wilfred Paradise
    north Carolina

  32. avatar
    Kraig | 26 March 2013 at 3:45 pm #

    Still cannot login to your site but i wanted to comment on the new Bowie album, even though you didn’t like that single, while listening to the new album it’s actually pretty damn good! Go take a listen i think you’ll love it, that single is the only slow song on the album…rest is art in my opinion

  33. avatar
    Ryan Murdock | 26 March 2013 at 7:51 pm #

    Excellent! Really looking forward to hearing this one. You guys are amazing live (even on an off night!). And you’ve got a hell of a back catalogue. I listened to it all over the past few weeks while driving 2,000 off road desert km’s, raising dust clouds across the Selima sand sheet. Listened to all your solo albums too (including the idyllist on daily replay). Your stuff just keeps getting better and better.

  34. avatar
    Anonymous | 26 March 2013 at 11:21 pm #

    Well, if you’re going to have a live album after all this time, it might as well be something special like this. Did the mastertapes of the 1986 ‘Bootleg’ ever turn up in EMI’s vaults?

  35. avatar
    spapper | 19 April 2013 at 3:33 am #

    I saw The Church for the first time in 1990 (ventura, CA). Then, i was taken by the energy of the band. I remember Marty snapping strings and not missing a beat. literally awesome. I’ve seen The Church a few times since (Shook Mr. Kilbey’s hand, and he had a look on his face like he thought i was going to mug him. my wife and i still laugh at that one). Watching the SOH footage of “Tantalized” took me back to Ventura. Simply amazing. Watching Marty strum made my own elbow and wrist ache. This band’s not lost a step. I love Marty’s playing and the band’s propulsive energy on songs like “Myrrh” (sorry, the best Church song)and “Roman”. If they’d stopped at “Heyday”, they’d still be no. 2 in my book (Second to Floyd, not bad), but i’m glad they didn’t. looking forward to the dvd/cd. continued good luck and success to The Church and Mr. Kilbey.

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