Concert Review: Carnivorous Plant Society – Wine Cellar April 30, 2021

The Wine Cellar is where The Carnivorous Plant Society – Tour of Oblivion bid NZ adieu. Under a red haze, a veritable horde of instruments hugged the stage. The performers squeezed within the instrument puzzle and the Finn Scholes experience began.

The multi-talented Finn was accompanied by multi-instrumentalist Sean Martin-Buss – tossing between bass, sax and flute. With Michael Barker on percussion and Brett Adams on electric guitar.

The show opened with New King off the 2018 album, The New King. This is where we were introduced to what felt like an Egyptian empire tale where a Hank Marvin style guitar solo slotted in and off we went! The clever tales laid out by Finn flooded those four walls for the next 2 and a half hours.

Carnivorous Plant Society

Before playing Phantom Finger, Finn asked the audience to participate. “When the trumpet sounds, I want you to scream!” he said. This gave the song a Mexican show down vibe. The audience loved it!

Finn told us that as a child he was traumatized by the “pop-out” Eye Magic books, and we could see why when an animated phantom eye on the backdrop followed as he picked up and put down the stream of instruments before him.

Carnivorous Plant Society

Finn’s psychedelic world really opened up with Slave, as an animated faceless dog escaped a mundane world. The band played seamlessly with the animation presented on the backdrop. I was drawn in deep, the trumpets descended, and the protagonist fell from a cliff! Was he going to be ok? I will never know.

The mix of psychedelic mariachis and themes of death, rebirth and exploration in the music and animation were reminiscent of the 70s Mexican fantasy film The Holey Mountain. Like PG porn, he was showing us into an alluring but uncomfortable world of unveiled innocence.

The generous performance by amazingly unfatigued Finn Scholes was epic! After a month-long tour it is obvious he loves what he does! His light-hearted banter with band and  audience showed that the stage is his happy place. And why wouldn’t it be, if you can pick up any instrument and create a fantasy escapade!

Odessa Neilands

N.B. Odessa Neilands reviewed the Saturday night show. Chris Zwaagdyk‘s photos are from the Friday night show.

The 13th Floor’s ace photographer Chris Zwaagdyk was there to catch all the action. Check out his photos here: