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In September 2021, the Melbourne band announced the dissolution of its current iteration, and would be undergoing one final tour before making way “for a new incarnation of The Cat Empire to come to life”. Only lead vocalist Felix Riebl and keyboardist Ollie McGill of the original band will continue to perform under the moniker in the future.
Last night, the entire original line-up closed out the opening day of this year’s edition of Bluesfest. Having made its return in 2022 after several cancellations, Bluesfest welcomed The Cat Empire as one of its headliners. The band announced last year that the festival appearance would be the final stop on their tour.
Fans have been sharing photos and videos of the band’s set, which included some of their most popular songs – including ‘Hello’, ‘Two Shoes’, ‘The Wine Song’ and closer ‘The Chariot’. Find the full set list below.
On their social media, The Cat Empire made a significant round of thank-yous, posting individual thanks to their crews past and present, and their management – including long-time manager Correne Wilkie.
Check those posts out below:
The Cat Empire performed several shows at Melbourne’s Sidney Myer Music Bowl in December 2021, and have made one of those performances available to stream online from today.
The Cat Empire formed in 1999, with McGill and Riebl joined by bassist Ryan Moro. They expanded to a six-piece two years later, with Harry James Angus (vocals, trumpet), Will Hull-Brown (drums) and Jamshid “DJ Jumps” Khadiwhala (turntables) performing with the group since 2001. “We cherish our global audience who took us into their hearts, homes, venues and festivals, returning over and over to sing and dance with us,” the band said in a statement last year.
“[We] leave each other with full hearts, healthy relationships, and a deep respect for each other and the musical journey we have shared together and with the world.”
The Cat Empire Bluesfest Byron Bay 2022 setlist:
1. ‘How To Explain?’
3. ‘Oscar Wilde’
4. ‘The Crowd’
5. ‘Brighter Than Gold’
6. ‘Daggers Drawn’
7. ‘Two Shoes’
8. ‘Still Young’
9. ‘The Lost Song’
10. ‘In My Pocket’
12. ‘The Car Song’
13. ‘Steal The Light’
14. ‘The Wine Song’
15. ‘The Chariot’