Depth Magazine exists because of the love of alternative music; including metal, rock, punk and other related genres such as electronicore. We create music reviews, interviews and other content relevant to the industry, and we do it all with heart.
Kicking off from where we last heard from them with “Carry Me”, Foxblood are back with new music. The Melbourne band have shared the good news that their sophomore album Grief & Mercy is on the way, of which “Kill the Lights” is our first taste. Grief & Mercy will release on 5th August.
When I saw the band in early 2018 at the “Never Rome” single launch, they seemed to be going through a bit of a transition, and were trying to find their feet. With the creation of an album behind the scenes, it seems they’ve been making some powerful inroads as a band. “Kill the Lights” includes guest vocals from Chris Millward; the band’s original vocalist who has continued to pen Foxblood’s lyrics.
For a song with high energy that unfolds at a relatively quick pace, “Kill the Lights” is surprisingly dark when you take a closer look. The layered first chorus vibes like a wrestling match via rapidfire syllables, where a downward slide is the inevitable outcome of this fight. “A rising waterline headspace” is such a great phrase, and it’s easy to immerse in the cyclic grip of sanity that’s being painted here; where it’s a fight to stay in a metaphorically light state.
“I can tell you a few things about half empty”
“Kill the Lights”‘s chorus is a standout for me, and Foxblood’s vocalist/bassist Anthony Syle seems to take this tense situation and lift it sky high in questioning. It’s such a beautiful contrast to the verses, and takes the perspective out of the mess and wonders what else is possible, for a brief shining moment.
Foxblood are clearly benefited by all the different voices they have contributing to this track, which includes vocalist/guitarist Tom Beale, and the vocal feature from Chris. It’s gritty and tense as the internal battle carries on. There’s a sense of desperation with the track that only grows as “Kill the Lights” goes on, and sonically amps up as the song comes to its end courtesy of some synthy tones, gradual build up of instruments and voice.
Watch Foxblood in action in “Kill The Lights” below via Dreambound on YouTube. You can also hear the track in the flesh when Foxblood hit Australia’s East Coast in July. Details via Foxblood’s Facebook page.
Foxblood - Kill The Lights (OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO) - YouTube
Having watched Resolve from early in their band life, through twists and turns and creative choices, it’s an absolute treat to take in a new single from the Lyon based band. Though the former quartet is now a trio (after the departure of guitarist Aurélien Mariat), new single “Of Silk and Straw” shows that this change hasn’t dampened their sonic strength. That’s an understatement.
From its hefty roaring introduction with a light melody dancing behind, “Of Silk and Straw” reveals itself most earnestly with a mammoth and unwavering riff, drawing the listener into their world and their story. From merely 30 seconds in, there’s a “YES”-ness of appreciation to the force of emotion behind “Of Silk and Straw”, which effortlessly blends light melodies with distorted roars and stuttering (yet strong) beats.
“So keep your fucking disdain” roars vocalist Anthony Diliberto as we sink into what feels like a second verse, and he spits lyrical lines at money-focused folk. A satisfying chorus is soon revealed, inspiring goosebumps in me as it lays out clearly that despite the worlds we’re raised in (silken or straw), we are all eventually destined to die. The lyric “I’ve never seen a hearse followed by a safe” sums up this futility of being driven by greed.
Djenty punches offer a hectic breath-collecting interlude moment while keeping the energy high, before Resolve plough into another verse. By now, in the immersion of this song, it’s fucking palpable to hear Resolve’s perception of how the so-called mighty will inevitably fall. Through my listen I’m mostly just gobsmacked by how great the guitars on this track are, yet how smooth it all flows as a listen, including the warmth of bass. While smooth to the ear, I’m admiring how unpredictable the course of this song is. For one example, how it lands in a pool of electro tinged static thoughtfulness before blowing out satisfyingly into the last roaring chorus.
I’m a little lost for words as to how satisfying it is to see Resolve in full blown fire mode. “Of Silk and Straw” returns to themes shared in their Rêverie EP about the pressure to succeed, yet still feels new and full, and an exciting new step forward for the band. And I haven’t even talked about the music video. As a band that sits on my mental ‘Bands I NEED To See Live’ list, it’s a treat to see Resolve pour out their intensity and heart into the visual playing of this song.
“Of Silk and Straw” it’s an in-house effort. The song is produced by Resolve, mixed and mastered by Robin Mariat, written by Anthony Diliberto and Robin Mariat, with the video created by Aurélien Mariat. This one will be on heavy rotation, no question.
Resolve - Of Silk And Straw (OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO) - YouTube
If you know me at all, you’ll know how much I adore The Gloom In The Corner‘s song “War”. The 4:50 piece of music nestled in the centre of the Melbourne band’s Homecoming EP seemed to somehow pull together every musical feature that I find endearing into one brilliant song. Despite knowing nothing at all about The Gloom In The Corner’s conceptual world at the time, “War” was the song that drew me into it.
From beginning to end, “War” rips the listener into a front row perspective of post-war PTSD, haunted by memories, “neverending flashbacks“, and the subsequent destruction of home life with attempts to return to normalcy. It’s best summed up by the lyric “Though my tour is ended, the sound continues and the sound of war is endless”.
As is the norm with The Gloom In The Corner songs, “War” isn’t a standalone piece. It’s part of the ongoing narrative that the story-driven heavy band have created, gradually sharing insight into characters, connections, motivations, and challenges. It is character Ethan Hardy who was at war, who mistakenly killed a child, who lost his wife and unborn child, and who sacrificed his own tortured life (see “Witch Hunt”) to help his brother recover from a supernatural disease.
That’s a very surface level take on a very involved story, but hopefully enough to have the uninitiated understand The Gloom In The Corner’s most recently released single “Peace”; the sequel to “War”. “Peace” takes us to Ethan’s funeral, and is from the perspective of Sherlock Bones (who we ‘met’ in previous singles “Villain”, “Misanthropic”, and “Survivor’s Guilt”). As well as linked by story, “War” and “Peace” are linked lyrically and sonically, which is a bonus treat for “War” lovers.
“Peace”‘s gentle and sombre introduction under rain sets the scene for the funeral. Soon enough we’re swept into the choppy waves of introspection, created instrumentally and lyrically, like swaying to the sobering nausea of reality. There’s been a loss and that fact is hitting Sherlock hard. There’s a swing between raw horror and softer concern of what could have been done differently, reflected by Mikey Arthur’s vocals moving between the two states of expression. A vibrant synthy melody accompanies an open letter style of well wishing. The fact this care is obviously coming far too late adds to “Peace”‘s emotional thumping.
“I hope today that you’re finally at peace”
With the clever stage-setting introduction of “And while you had suffering, I was left with loathe“, “Peace” includes a feature from Loathe‘s vocalist Kadeem France. I take Kadeem’s feature to be a response from Ethan, and it’s fittingly roaringly uneasy and uncomfortable in the “forever unending” darkness as he calls to be heard. The question of “What did you do to help me while I was alive?” hits home, where Ethan seemed to have self-destructed in plain sight. A morbid mantra of “Live. Serve. Die.” is punched home, feeling like defeat to a system they have no power to change (“That’s all we know”).
“Peace” is most brutally emotionally impactful as it ties into the “I walk across a sea of flames” lyric from “War”, but is said in the third person perspective. Ouch. The stillness and sadness of this section just bleeds regret and self-blame. It’s thoroughly well done by the band as a whole in setting a graveside scene and a mood of finality. What Ethan went through is finally noticed and understood, despite it being too late for him – on this earthly plane, anyway. All that’s left to do is wish for peace for the tortured soul who gave up everything. So yep, this hits hard.
As someone who adores “War”, I can confirm that “Peace” is an impressive sonic sibling to the track. It finds strong links, while also existing in a very different atmosphere and having its own identity. It’s yet another well done track by The Gloom In The Corner.
It feels like only yesterday that Oldham County’s Knocked Loose gave us new music in the form of their Mistakes Like Fractures three-track in early April. Yet here we are at the end of May, and here we are with new music to get the blood gushing from our ears.
Eager fans in the Southern Hemisphere noticed it first, and now the whole world is beginning to wake up to the band’s brand new single “…And Still I Wander South”. Straight to the point like we’ve come to expect from the hardcore outfit, the song is unrelenting from its earliest moments with ferocity dripping from every syllable, every drum beat and every pluck of a string. Knocked Loose can’t write a bad song, and it shows.
Sonically, the song seems to follow the path set by last month’s three-track. It seems to walk the tightrope between metalcore and hardcore than the Laugh Tracks LP, while its production feels rougher than said album too. Defying any real genre, all that you really need to know about this song is that it sounds humongous and hits even harder.
“I spent so much time focused on the difference.”
Thematically, the song seems to focus on being trapped within a vicious cycle of self-loathing and the inability to drag oneself out of the hole. It alludes to no matter how hard you try to escape, we all find ourselves inexplicably digging ourselves deeper down. Garris’ vocals convey a feeling of overwhelming helplessness, lyrics like “I cast out a prayer for wings, anything to remove this vice”, alluding to those same feelings.
With a deceptive run time of just under four minutes, it’s a minute-long ring out that closes out the song, giving listeners time to pick themselves up and dust themselves off. Ominously, it’s what comes next that should have alarm bells ringing as keen listeners can pick up the slightest suggestion of vocals leading into whatever song is to follow “…And Still I Wander South”. If this song isn’t enough for you, whatever comes next surely will be.
Shared alongside a music video and the announcement of the band’s sophomore LP A Different Shade of Blue, it’s a great time to be a Knocked Loose Fan. The video is dark and rough, and just strange enough to scare you a little bit, kind of just like the actual song. The visuals are consistent with those in the “Mistakes Like Fractures” video, which is also set to appear on the album, with the colour blue a prominent feature of both.
Who knows just what we’re in store for when A Different Shade of Blue releases, on 23rd August. Yet if this song is anything to go off, we best all get ready to get our asses belted by the band doing it better than anybody else right now. Pre-order here: knockedloose.merchnow.com
Knocked Loose "...And Still I Wander South" Official Music Video - YouTube
Caged Existence seemed to come out of nowhere, get pretty big pretty quickly, and NOW they’re heading to Europe. Massive congratulations are in order for this hype heavy group of stage stompers. Caged Existence are no strangers to bringing a bit of oomph to the heavy scene and they’ve brought out the next step in their short but successful career.
“Liar’s Tongue” has been revealed as the debut single from their sophomore EP The Burden of Purpose, which will be released on the June 14th 2019. With the release of the new single, the group have cemented themselves as a band that is ready to consistently bring out tracks that are going to win over fans in huge numbers and make a fortune for the reinforced concrete industry. This track is a stomper for sure; do not listen on grandmother’s newly laid tiles.
“Liar’s Tongue”‘s guitar tones are very similar to those used on prior songs such as their self-titled track, “Caged Existence”, however, the tone holds a lot more weight. Each chug is complemented by some bass filled kick and killer drum work. We’re presented with the distinct growls and yells that have become a trademark of Caged Existence. I feel like this song would be so much fun to play on bass because whilst not as prominent through my new garbage headphones, I can still hear some serious heavy bass chug in the background and I am a fan. This group sounds extremely cohesive, they know what they’re doing when it comes down to presentation and content and because of this they are quickly accruing an audience of diehard listeners.
Instrumentally, the music isn’t complicated and in no way does it need to be. However, I mention its simplicity due to the fact that Caged Existence is a ‘No Bullshit’ band. It’s not dressed up, it’s all raw anger and expression that just so happens to get you in a head bop mood. There’s the occasional groove when they throw in some tasty chords like those present in (to mention again) their self-titled track, “Caged Existence”. Yet, the majority of the time I feel Caged Existence brings a certain mindset to their music which is, “Yeah, we’re Caged Existence. Be cool to each other, let’s party, and also we’re gonna rip your face off, if you don’t mind.” I suppose I can just sum it up with “this band is tight and they’re getting better.”
“You are nothing to no one anymore.”
By way of meaning, we are given a sense of utter frustration and acknowledgement of someone who is nothing but a negative vice on the life of our protagonist. Thematically this song seems to both revere and despise the individual referenced. I’m unsure of whether this is a concept song about a character or inspired by a real person. If it’s about a real someone? You pissed off the wrong lyricist. There’s a lot going on grammatically in “Liar’s Tongue”; our lyricist has chosen some intense subject matter and with that comes a flurry of metaphorical phrases and some word choice.
“Liar’s Tongue” seems to explicitly refer to the negative connotation and severe impact on the lyricist by the subject which is now over, as the subject has ceased to be worth giving any time, energy or thought. I feel we are made to know that this person or character they are referring to is a manipulative, weak-willed, and draining individual. This song sounds visceral, angry, and like a hell of a track to play live. I have no doubt that this song is going to be – if it isn’t already – a hit with their live crowd who are going to reciprocate with some serious movement.
Caged Existence have now left to go on their European Tour with Cruel Hand, Kublai Khan, and Knocked Loose. If you’re over there, I suggest you get some tickets because this is a high energy mashup. Details: http://knockedloosehc.com/tour-dates/
A band that never seem to slow down, Sydney punks Whatever, Forever have once again dished up a serving of piping hot tunes in the form of new single “Bury Me”. A sombre song, it’s a marked change from what we’ve come to know from the band as the five-piece embrace a more melodically driven approach to their work.
Whatever, Forever are Michael Godwin (vocals), Nick Adams (guitar/vocals), Chas Levi (guitar/vocals), Jack Rudder (bass) and Matt Doherty (drums).
Opening with clean vocals that foreshadow the mood of the track, there’s a solemn intensity to the song’s beginnings that we’ve seldom seen from the band before. Not that it hasn’t been present to this point, it’s just never quite sounded like this. The first lines “I’m feeling down, I’m circling a hole in the ground”, repeated throughout the song and sung by Levi, set the tone for everything the single represents.
It doesn’t seem like we’ve seen a song from the quintet that truly showcases the vocals of Godwin, Adams, and Levi like “Bury Me” achieves. While Godwin’s screams that have always prefaced the band are still there, the devastation they bring is balanced by the anguish and pain that defines the band’s supporting vocalists. Each is thrust into the spotlight at different times and each adds another dynamic layer to an already lively song.
And while the change in the approach to vocals may be the most significant, that’s not to say that the instrumental work in the song hasn’t improved monumentally. Everything about this band screams that they’re on the same page, every drum beat sounds like it hits harder, the string work feels fuller, and as a unit Whatever, Forever seem better than they’ve ever been.
“You only cared about yourself and where you fit in to all of this”
Lamenting on the experiences of somebody not wanting you around anymore, “Bury Me” feels like a departure from what the group set out to do on dual singles “Bridges” and “Whispers”, and a return to the ground that they broke on their 2017 three-track Decay. Yet in the two years since its release, you can hear with ease the growth that the band have undergone, resulting in an overly more mature sound that maintains the grit and grief that has always defined their music.
Aiming to, and successfully doing so, the band planned to exact a more melodic approach to their music than ever before. Frontman Michael Godwin shared, “It was definitely a deliberate choice to have more clean vocals on this track. We felt a big thing holding back our music in the past was a lack of melody in the vocals for people to get hooked into.”
“Bury Me” represents a significant time for Whatever, Forever. A band that has consistently thrown around their sound to see what works best, they might have just finally found it in this song. It marks a new chapter in the band’s story and if “Bury Me” is anything to go by, I can’t wait to read the whole book.
Following on from 2017’s Death Dreams, Perth based Daybreak are today releasing a three track EP Godfather. The band have kindly given us a behind the scenes look at how the EP and its songs came to be. Here’s insights into Godfather courtesy of vocalist Shaun Cox.
“Writing this EP lyrically was pretty stressful. The instrumentals were finished and recorded, lyrics for “Bad Boy” and “Godfather” were finished, but I hadn’t started “Therapy” yet. We had tours and local headliners booked and I didn’t even have an idea what to write the song about. I ended up deciding to write about what was going on at that exact moment.
“As a young band, we feel like we’re only just realising our potential, having a short time frame and being under all this pressure with this release was either going to make or break us. We’re now more focused than ever, we know what our goals are this time, it won’t just be a hobby on the side, this is our passion and the four of us are going to pour everything we have into this band. “Therapy” is a precursor for the rest of our time as a band together, and the Godfather EP is the first installment of a new, more measured Daybreak.”
“It seems to me you found your peace
But where you’re going, I’m not following”
“So the area we’re from, by no stretch of the imagination could be labeled ‘rough’. However, there seems to be a bit of an influential plague amongst people our age. A lot of these guys grew up alongside us, but were sucked into a cringe-worthy culture where they would pretend to be this really hard gangster type, but in reality, are far from it.
“The track is basically us laying their future out in front of them. “Bad Boy” definitely came together the easiest lyrically. Each section is nice and open which left a lot of space to rant. One of our good mates Coen McNamara has done a few guesties live for us, so I thought it would be dope to get someone who’s not in a band on a track, just a genuine mate that we thought would fit the part. Also, our drummer Sammy boy spat a few bars himself which has turned out sick.”
“So run around acting hard
But is that really who the fuck you are?”
“There’s too much to explain lyrically in this track. There is no filler lines here, each line can be unpacked and is accurate to the events that inspired this song. I know explaining the lyrics comes with the territory of writing songs but, explaining this one is a rabbit hole. The connection I have to this song is far deeper than any of our previous tracks. The first line of “Godfather” tells you what it’s about, and the lyrics that follow paints the rest of the picture.”
“I was told about the passing of someone I know”
Daybreak - Godfather (Official Music Video) - YouTube
It hasn’t even been a year since the release of their debut album Everything Is Temporary, yet Melbourne’s Between You & Me have already blessed us with new music. Serving up their new single “Famous”, the band have dished up an offering that leans more into the group’s pop influences than the band have ever explored.
Infectious from its opening moments, everything about this song is probably going to get stuck in your head. From the opening guitar riff that’s bound to get your shoulders popping to the booming vocals of frontman Jake Wilson, there’s just something about “Famous”, that will have this track on repeat on Spotify accounts across the world.
Despite leaning into pop more than ever, “Famous”, still feels distinctly familiar as it takes what listeners have come to know and love about the pop-punk quintet before adding a sprinkle of finesse and just a tad more polish. Yet at its core, the song is still rough and angst-ridden as it revels in the childhood fantasy of making it in the big leagues.
Never a band to lack it, if you can’t hear the overwhelming confidence that radiates through Between You & Me in this song, there’s no doubt you’d be able to see it in the single’s accompanying music video. Paying homage to everybody from Beyoncé to The Beatles, I struggle to imagine a music video that I’ve enjoyed more.
“I wanna be the greatest. Where do I start?”
It emits a care-free attitude, shouting out that the band really don’t care what people might think of them because they’re just going to do their own thing. While on the very rare occasion some of the vocal effects feel a little overdone for my own liking, the ability to incorporate different elements of production that work for the most part, speaks volumes about the air of confidence currently surrounding this band.
Despite running for just over three minutes, the song can begin to feel slightly repetitive but there’s enough minor change as the song progresses to prevent it from ever becoming boring. Furthermore, even if the song structure is simple, it carries more than enough weight and holds no punches for those listening and that’s before we even talk about THAT ending.
Carrying a belting chorus, it’s the song’s closing 45 seconds that really turn into an immediate hit. Everything hits harder, from the vigorous screamed vocals that play into the underlying harmonies beautifully, to the explosive drums that set the foundation for punchy guitar and bass. If you weren’t sold yet, you will be by the time the song finishes.
BYAM want to be famous, they want to leave a mark, and with a few more songs like this it’s hard to imagine that that dream is very far off at all.
Between You & Me - Famous (Official Music Video) - YouTube
Fans of The Beautiful Monument, get excited because your band have an album on the way! I’m The Reaper will release on 28th June via their new home at Greyscale Records. Following on from (the curiously similarly titled) I’m The Sin, the new album has been hinted to be an extremely personal look at the experience of life.
Though we’ve still got the chorus of “Deceiver” in our heads, fresh new single and video “Stay” comes with the album news. After a synthy and suppressed introduction, “Stay” shares with soft honesty perspective shifts and realisations have come along with maturity. This growth in understanding is matched by a growth in strength, musically speaking.
When “Stay” lands at its second verse, where decisions made and lines drawn come with palpable fresh winds of change, the result is a goosebump experience, with tenderness enhanced by backing vocals and harmonies. “Stay”‘s pre-chorus is gritty though, with stuttering rhythms that come across as wrong footings or other attempts that may or may not have worked out.
“But it was that moment that we both knew that moving would bring me closer to you”
The line “Just do it for you” of the chorus stands out to me as a call for someone to focus on themselves above everything, and the drifting “Staaaaay” sparks goosebumps yet again, before the calm ultimatum vibe of the song’s bridge.
About the song, The Beautiful Monument’s frontwoman Lizi Blanco seems to reveal that “Stay” is about her leaving her home. She says “If I hadn’t have moved away from my family, The Beautiful Monument wouldn’t exist. Everything happens for a reason, and sometimes it’s hard to understand at the time, but it all ties in and makes sense eventually.” The Colin Jeffs music video (with the concept by Kieran Ellis-Jones) uses imagery to present dark and destructive impacts upon childhood innocence and home, and also captures The Beautiful Monument in action.
The album promises to explore themes of life, such as grief, redemption, and growth, and we’re keen to see what the result of that is when I’m The Reaper releases. On the album, Lizi shares that it is “strongly associated with a lot of the negative times in my life” and their subsequent impact on who she is now.
Clarifying what’s ahead in I’m The Reaper, Lizi is quoted as saying that as well as the negatives of life, the album shares the positive outcomes from those experiences. Strongly tying in the new album to the previous release, Lizi says “It’s the reaping of I’m The Sin and the beginning of a new chapter.”
Last Chance Rock & Roll Bar is one of the smaller and more intimate venues Melbourne has on offer. After releasing the stellar album Liar, Brisbane based She Cries Wolf announced an Australian tour in the album’s honour, with Last Chance on the route. Having Liar on regular rotation since I reviewed it, I jumped at the opportunity to catch the band in the flesh (actually ending up buying a ticket twice by mistake, because I didn’t want to miss it).
To open the night, locals Red Lotus took the stage. More atmospheric than chaotic, the set was impressive! Slow and steady instrumental climbs lifted and encouraged vocals, before the Melbourne band took metaphorical leaps from full heaviness into high peaks. Thoughtful and fire-tinged, the set’s first epic song pulled all of us present into it.
To me it was clear that Red Lotus were here just to be who they are and share their music. No facade, nothing for appearances, nothing just to be cool. Just them. In the paisley wallpapered playground of Last Chance, we were swept up into rhythmic intricacy and vocal screams from frontwoman Stephanie Briffa. With a captivated crowd taking this full and majestic set alongside me, I found myself feeling lucky to have these experiences available to me in Melbourne. Live music is alive and well here!
As the set continued, stunning melodic guitar soared while dynamic vocals told a story. I appreciated the tandem vocals between bassist Luke Sullivan and Stephanie, as well as how comfortable the band seemed in both exploratory, light, and vining sounds, as well as deep breakdowns and growls. Red Lotus have a tough sound to put into words, coming across as experimental with a sense of funk, plus metal, plus dreaminess. Finishing up, I couldn’t fault any part of this band and their set, where beautiful vocals, warm and drawing bassline, light entrancing guitar melody, and fierce beats combined to form something amazing. Why don’t I listen to Red Lotus more often? [Find them on Spotify here!]
In fact I’m honestly not a regular listener to any of the bands on this bill aside from She Cries Wolf, though happy to take them all in. Watch the openers, people. Discover new music! Second act Death in Bloom had crossed my path with single “Shelter” last year, and hit the stage feeling fierce, fiery, and full. Just while I was questioning to myself how much energy could fit crammed onto the tiny Last Chance stage, bassist Abe Miller went for a tumble.
Setting an angry and hectic pace, Death In Bloom’s steady and driving songs hit like a sledgehammer, with searching vocals attempting to reach above the solid instrumentation. “Tempest” offered a rabbit hole dive into heaviness, with windmilling fierceness courtesy of wildness on drums at times. Last Chance offered close quarters with these steady two-steppable songs. The great guitar tone and raw vocals were enthralling.
I felt like I would have got more out of Death in Bloom’s set if I’d been more familiar with the songs, but it was still strong; pulling out fat riffs, moments of alarm/urgency, and edge of sanity chaos. “Hellebore” as one example made for a strong slice of music, and I appreciated the sick bass tone, the pull into the song’s story courtesy of vocals, and huge spaciousness left for pit action. [Death in Bloom on Spotify]
Sydney heavies Heists have been hand-picked to join She Cries Wolf on their tour! The quintet came barrelling out of the gate as their set kicked off, sparking a practically immediate mosh, and dropped drinks. Continuing their pummeling pace, searching guitar melodies wove through their set, including “Defeated”, the most recent single released by the band.
I wondered (again) how this much fierceness could fit on the tiny stage as “Disquiet” poured out at us. Seemingly designed to be emotionally moving (well, it was for me!), the gradual downward slide of the song was punctuated by a ‘fuck it’ level of breakdown. Constant movement and plenty of energy kept the Heists set enthralling, despite my unfamiliarity with them. [Heists’ Spotify]
“I’ve tried to live as an honest man, but everyone fucking loves the liar”
The moment we’d been waiting for had arrived with She Cries Wolf taking to the stage. From the opening stirrings of “Perjury” playing, I was hooked. The fact that I was reviewing and needed to somehow remember facts and figures of the experience for that purpose was forgotten as I watched the Brisbane band rip out the first four tracks of Liar. And impressively so. I found myself stunned and speechless at how great it was, and all my past self has given me in my notes of the set is “How to word?”. Gee, thanks for that.
As incredible as the recorded album, She Cries Wolf’s sound was full, moving, and hard-hitting. The drum punctuated roars of “Perjury” ran into the breakneck pace of “Magdalene”, showing the ridiculous vocal skill of frontman Luke Harriss in the meantime, and the eye-grabbing theatrics of guitarist Daniel Belic.
Instrumentally awesome, these songs and how they were being shared was blowing me away. You couldn’t have asked for the band to sound any better, and each of the Liar tracks were nailed in their full dynamic brilliance. As a band, She Cries Wolf are hard to look away from in action, especially when they’re coming at you with something so all-immersing as “Love Trader” (one of my favourites, so I was stoked that it appeared on the setlist). I just stood there and took it all in, probably with a smile on my face, gobsmacked and starry eyed, with magic made on stage via overlapping vocals and ridiculous drumming.
Even music aside, the quartet’s stage presence, energy, and eye contact was drawing and mesmerising. It was all a bit of a ‘pinch me, I’m dreaming’ moment for me, and I had to look at other people there (shout out to Nick Brown of Backbone Sunday Sessions podcast!) to make sure I was experiencing what I was experiencing for real. People still clearly had their wits about them in this waking dream enough to grab the mic at times, adding their voices to lines like “FEAR IS TRADING LOVE FOR MEANINGLESS SEX!”.
Though the setlist was Liar heavy, She Cries Wolf made a stop in older material, sharing “Baal” from their self-titled EP. They also later played the thick and hectic standalone single “Cultist” whose controlled aggression paved the way for pitting, and let guitarist Daniel continue his signature (impressive) intensity, including eyes rolled back in his head as he became lost to the song, or staring intimidatingly out at us.
Briefly sharing about Liar, Luke spoke about how the album came after a period of the band feeling creatively blocked for some time. He came across as grateful for the album to have come to life, as well as appreciative of its reception. But it wasn’t a chatty set and we were quickly back into the music with “Pine”, another favourite of mine. With “Pine”‘s sense of reverence with what’s being lyrically delivered (“How could they laugh? It was only last night”), its moments of wildness, and its amazing bridge, I couldn’t help but tear up a little. How does it get any better than this kind of song being powerfully and skillfully delivered in a live setting?!
Though I could happily watch She Cries Wolf for hours and hours, good things have to come to an end and their set was soon over. I found myself wondering how drummer Luke Gallows keeps up with “After Death” when it kicks in at its most ridiculous. It was “Moments (After Death Pt. II)” that ended the night; a suitably full and impactful piece of music to round out the ride of the set, with Luke (Harriss) intensely immersed into the song.
Hands down, this was one of my favourite shows of the year so far, and the crowd that squeezed into Last Chance were a fortunate bunch to soak up something so special. Anyone who loves Liar would be crazy to miss this experience! Canberra, Sydney, Brisbane, and Perth, you still have a chance!