Taipan is the one thing that redeems the pop tune that comes before it on Circus Animals. The whining lead guitar of Forever Now stops quite abruptly and then Taipan starts. And on the old cassette tape it was simply a part of the experience.
Before I'd really started listening to Circus animals I had heard Taipan on the radio and I was amazed at how good it was. Just like "Never Before" from East it had a really different, subcontinental feel to it. Both songs blew my mind.
Taipan brought that sound back to an Australian story. Working for a corporation in a cane field; dirty and backbreaking work and all the while needing to avoid our deadly reptiles. The mental image of canefields burning, reminiscent of Jimmy's later clip of "Working Class Man". The story was later echoed in GangGajang's "Sounds of then" - minus the snakes.
My dad hated most of the music I played and when I challenged him on that - to name a song of mine that he liked - then Taipan was the one he chose.
Now that I think of it I played it on a dinky little record player on vinyl in my room at the back of the house: 22 Roycroft Ace, Salisbury East, 5109.
About the festival of Circus Animals
I was 15 years old when the "Circus Animals" album came out, but I only really started paying attention to it had about 18 as I entered the workforce. It was the fourth of about five studio (original) albums. It wasn't the only musical influence on my early adult life, but I did grow up and start working around the same sort of places as Jimmy Barnes. As an 18 year old angry young man (aren't we all in some way?) this music was talking my language.