THE experience of supporting flamboyant English rockers The Darkness and Australian pop-rock mainstays Killing Heidi left a lasting impression on Rackett.
The rising all-female Sydney band realised they needed to lift their game.
“We learnt the level of musicianship is really important,” Rackett frontwoman Rebecca Callander said.
“Playing with The Darkness, their level of musicality and showmanship is the absolute point of excellence that we strive to reach.
“With bands like Killing Heidi, they gave us an understanding of creating songs that will last the test of time and resonate with a generation so it’s relevant for years to come.
“It definitely impacted how we design our live show, how often we rehearse and also the kind of music we’re going to write.”
Anybody who has witnessed a Rackett live show knows they’re a seriously entertaining band.
Colourful, hyper-feminine, interactive and riotously fun, the four-piece have been whipping up interest since their debut single Bats in 2016.
An EP Ready Or Not was released last year and continued to explore the band’s love of classic rock, punk and experimental pop.
“We like to consider ourselves a trans-genre band,” Callander said. “We kind of coined that name ourselves as an adjective to try and let people know we’re not one thing.”
The result has been a diverse fan base. Rackett shows regularly attract everyone from teenage girls to middle-aged men.
“I guess we’re modern in the fact we listen to modern music and we present ourselves aesthetically in a modern way and we’re an all-female band, which is on trend right now,” Callander said.
“Our staple style is classic rock. It’s great that we translate across such a broad demographic.”
Rackett last played in Newcastle at the Cambridge Hotel on Boxing Day where they delivered a blistering set. Lead guitarist Kat Ayala can seriously shred.
Callander was a shot of pure charisma, strutting around the stage. At one point she even pretended to be ill before asking for kisses from the front-row punters to make her feel “better.”
Much like The Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Karen O, Callander has never been afraid to push herself physically during performances.
Last June she had her long blonde hair shaved off live on stage. Even her bandmates didn’t know it was coming.
“I grew up on stage,” said the former NIDA student. “I was also a dancer. I studied tap, jazz and ballet all the way through to my teacher’s certificate.”
Callander has also starred in several Australian films like There’s Something In The Pilliga (2014) and Emergency Exit (2011).
Rackett’s bassist Ally Gavin also comes from a dance background, having performed at Disneyland in Los Angeles.
“The theatrical background has really been a lifetime commitment to the stage from all of us in different forms and mediums,” Callander said.
Rackett bring their Alive national tour to the Small Ballroom on March 29.