Twelve Foot Ninja
Bald Faced Stag, Sydney NSW
3rd September, 2016
Supported by Toxicon and Acolyte
Choosing the opening bands for the likes of Twelve Foot Ninja must be a hard ask. What genres do you choose? Djent? Electronic? Funk? Progressive? The answer this time was somewhere between good ol’ sounding heavy metal band Toxicon, and progressive rock label mates Acolyte. It’s an eclectic bill, for sure, but does it complement the main act? Well read on!
Toxicon, as mentioned are what the 90s (to me) sound like. Hard and fast heavy metal that continues to pound and pound like a jackhammer until you can’t help but bang your head. Adorned in “not jumpsuits, but battle onesies” the band kicked the night off with a complete shredder of a song, the groove laden riffs and thundering drums not only shook the walls of the venue, but the crowd as well. Progressing through their set felt like I had just gone through a car crash on a carnival ride, major whiplash. Every song felt like an ode to the gods of groove and death metal, with a side of hardcore thrown in for good measure. Definitely a good start to what was expected to be a brilliant night.
Next band Acolyte took to the stage in a bid to keep the energy flowing with a flourish of guitars and the operatic harmony of front woman Morgan Leigh-Brown, the amazing timbre of her voice carried through to every corner of the venue shocking almost every punter on the floor. As the smoke rolled across the room, so to did the slow, proggy melodies of Van Pelt and Borzęta, captivating and ensnaring all in their wake.Despite this, the band as a whole failed to really grab me, but I think that is explicitly just a me problem, as the cohesion that the band showcased captivated the whole room and brought earsplitting applause and cheers at the close of every song.
The time of the evening that the sold out crowd at the Bald Faced Stag had been waiting for continued to creep into frution, minute after minute dragging on excruciatingly slowly until finally… A flashing of green lights. The sound of static electronics. The time had come.
New single ‘Invincible’ erupts throughout the room as lights flash and rove over the awestruck faces of those in the foremost rows, a moshpit instantly opening up behind them. The powerful voice of Kin Etik resonates in almost visible waves as the lights played out their brilliance, adding another extra layer of professionalism to the show that is a wonder to behold. Fan favourite ‘Mother Sky’ transitions into the new hit ‘Sick’, without the band losing an iota of the energy that they brought with them to the stage, which is a marvel in and of itself, as I didn’t think they could be more active or explosive.
Each transition between heavy, pounding, down tuned riffs to the funky upbeat sections are not lost on the crowd, who rarely miss a beat and often flawlessly go from losing their minds to slowly swaying in time with the smooth melodies of the guitars. However, the stylings of drummer Shane Russell deserve a special mention; perfectly technical and complementing every groovy, funky instrumentation, but heavy and unstoppable as a malfunctioning freight train when needed. No more was this more on display than the set enders ‘Coming for You’ and ‘One Hand Killing’, sending the whole room in a flurry of banging heads and airborne bodies.
Every aspect of Twelve Foot Ninja’s live performance is so much more than their albums; little vocal differences, extra drum fills or guitar tweaks. It all coalesces into one amazing, personal feeling that rewards one and all who attend. Seeing Twelve Foot Ninja is an imperative for everyone, not just metalheads, because it is an experience unlike any other.
- Mother Sky
- Post Mortem
- Portait #1
- Child With No Enemy
- Coming for You
- One Hand Killing