Project Description

Superheist / Frankenbok / Dreadnaught / Rival Fire

@ The Stag Leichhardt

30/06/2017

(Live Review)

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Superheist

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Entering the Stag Hotel in Leichhardt for the first time since their recent well-documented renovations, it was a reassuring sign to see many people out braving a chilly Friday night in Sydney to catch 90s stalwarts Superheist, along with Frankenbok, Dreadnaught and Rival Fire. Having removed all the pokie machines from the venue to focus solely on music, it is definitely a step in the right direction in this somewhat sombre music scene Sydney is faced with currently. The purpose-built band room is large and has good sound, a perfect mid-sized venue for bands to perform at. But, we’re here to review the music!

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Rival Fire

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Catching the majority of Rival Fire’s set, it was evident why they were selected to support Superheist. The energetic four piece presented a heavy rock sound, sprinkled with synth tones for contrast; giving them an ‘alt rock’ style. Hailing from Melbourne, (yes, the singer is Farnsy’s son) Rival Fire played to a modest crowd, and belted out songs from their debut EP Riot, as well as their recently released album War with vigour and honesty. In fact, title track War was released this very day! Their sound was groovy, if at times a little rough, but overall did a respectable job of the tough opening spot, warming the crowd up nicely.

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Dreadnaught

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Following on, Melbourne’s Dreadnaught hit the stage to meet the growing crowd. Having been on the heavy music scene since 1992, these guys certainly knew what they were doing, and didn’t disappoint the die-hard fans at the front of the crowd. Passionately, singer Greg Trull (think a lower octave Matt Young) screamed and growled his way through some old classics such as The Gobbler, whilst also throwing in some songs from their latest release Caught The Vulture Sleeping (due out later this month). Even through several line up changes, the band’s cohesiveness was evident, and they played a solid set with some scathing guitar solos which were super enjoyable to watch. It’s testament to the band that they still rock hard, with their music remaining pertinent.

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Frankenbok

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Fellow Melbournites Frankenbok then took to the stage, eerily appearing through plumes of smoke to the tune of the Universal Studios theme song. Immediately, singer Dan McDougall snarled his way through Stalker Stalker, a track off their new release Vicious, Lawless. Their music was super fast, reminiscent to early Pantera, with bassist Tim interspersing his fierce metal screams during the set for good measure. The crowd sang along to favourite God’s Gift To No One, with Dan and his endless energy and enthusiasm even jumping into the crowd to get some backing vocals from the pumped up crowd. Having been on the scene for 20 years now, the set from these guys was as solid and entertaining as they come, the only blight a cover of a Madison Avenue track. Regardless, the guys performed well and played the shit out of their instruments. Most enjoyable!

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Superheist

Superheist

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Suitably pumped, the crowd were more than ready for the mighty Superheist. Flashing lights, sirens and House of Pain’s Jump Around indicated the start of their searing set. “Fuck yeah Sydney” new vocalist Ezekiel Ox stated, and cracked straight into it, playing songs old and new from their extensive back catalogue. They played songs like Deliverance and The Ghost impeccably, Ezekiel constantly pumping up the crowd to clap their hands and get involved (of course, they did). Grins from ear to ear from newly recruited drummer John Sankey demonstrated just how much fun the guys were having up there tonight, happy to be back in the circuit. They’ve played a few shows recently, but this tour, the Raise Hell tour, was a celebration of the ‘official’ return of Superheist, as well as the release of Raise Hell AAA Side – a three track EP to Raise Hell on unsuspecting punters! Playing Got The Bounce, with its’ surprising Cypress-Hill inspired rap in amongst the heaviness, contrasted Fully Loaded, which was more melodic; all the while Ezekiel bounced around the pit, with requests to “smash more beers”!!

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Superheist

Superheist

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Drawing all the way back to 2000, they played Karma from their EP 8 Miles High, to delighted cheers from fans in the crowd, who commenced a solid jumping mosh pit to demonstrate their gratitude. Back to Bullet, Ezekiel then left the stage briefly so bass player Si Durrant could sing Perfect World, a hidden demo track off Apocalypse (allegedly only released on cassette!), from 1994. Flick the Switch was next, a song about telling haters to “eat a bag of dicks”, with Ezekiel briefly hopping up on Si’s shoulders in the pit to growl out the words. Rounding out the set with classic Pulse, and the latest offering Raise Hell, the guys thanked the crowd – filled with both old school and new-found fans – for coming along, and was met with rapturous applause and cheers, along with chants for more. Verdict for tonight’s performance? A super-solid set filled with riffage, growls, comedy and great music; as relevant today as it was back in the 90s.

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Superheist

Superheist

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The theme of the night was definitely retrospective, nostalgic if you will, given three of the four bands have been in the Australian heavy metal scene since the early 90s. It just goes to show, even with several line up changes, that there is still a place for old school rockers who continue to do what they love doing, and do it well. Young bands today could learn a thing or two, that’s for sure!! Funnily, there would’ve been a decent portion of the crowd that weren’t even born when these guys started, but that’s where music prevails. When it’s good, it stands the test of time – which tonight was proof of this.

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AMNPLIFY – DB

My nickname is “The Amnplifier”. Why? Because around here my focus is on being a conduit for providing greater outcomes that people come here for. My day to day “work” is living in the moment, and I love helping others concentrate on finding their connection to themselves through their experiences.

Why start a music environment? The truth is I love music, I love writing, and I love life. I work with musicians every day, and I feel certain that I will be until they put me in the ground. I have been managing people in businesses of some sort for over thirty five years so along the way I have developed some “wisdom” from my regular and constant “observations”.

Amnplify your experience. That is what we want you to do here, and if you want to let me know why you do, or don’t, shoot me a message on Facebook.

Hope you enjoy yourself here and find something that hits you somewhere.