For those unawares, the Waifs might best be described as a
populist combo whose eclectic approach finds them freely bending boundaries
between folk, rock, blues, swing and standards.
Although their hometown following took root in their native Australia,
their fame now teeters on global proportions, thanks in large measure to a cozy
communal stage presence similar to that of other homespun bands like the Coors,
the Dixie Chicks and Nickel Creek.
Fortunately, their charms are laced with sincerity, allowing that giddy
exuberance to provide just complement to the group’s musical prowess.
Like most live albums, Live
From The Union of Soul offers a decent
sampling of the Waifs’ previous repertoire, making for a lively set that’s
injected with some self-effacing stage patter and even the occasional missed
cue. This gives songs such as “How Many Miles,” “Stay” and
“Take It In” an unlikely combination of exuberance and intimacy that guarantees
that bond between the performers and the audience becomes all the more
seamless. Even a couple of covers – Paul Kelly’s resilient “From Little
Things” and the sentimental standard “I Remember You” — find a perfect
fit in this eclectic barnstormer of a performance. A perfect primer, Live From the Union
of Soul finds the Waifs bringing it all home.
Standout tracks: “From Little Things,” “London
Still,” “When I Die” LEE ZIMMERMAN