Evelyn Hotel, Melbourne VIC
July 7th, 2017
Supports: Phoenix Day, Colibrium and A Gazillion Angry Mexicans
Fitzroy, it’s a bloody long way from Perth.
After getting an earful of Figures latest release Chronos I couldn’t think of a better way to spend a Friday night in Melbourne than at a gig for the EP’s launch. With that in mind, I’m using distance, time difference and wayward taxi drivers as an excuse for missing opening act Phoenix Day. Sorry guys, I heard you did a great job but I left my run from South Yarra to Fitzroy a bit late. I promise to make it up to you soon.
My tardiness aside I did turn up in time to grab a Fat Yak and witness South Australians Colibrium kick things off with a few truly awful dad jokes. It wasn’t clear what the reason for the attempts at humour was. But as soon as the jokes finished and the first note sounded it was clear what they do better than comic relief – play bloody good music! The room was only about half full, what a shame. The many who turned up later missed out on a set worthy of attention. Lead singer Chris Gard has a real Chris Cornell vibe, smooth and strong. Vocally he was hard to fault. In fact, the whole band were tight as fuck and put on a hell of a set of good solid rock n roll.
A Gazillon Angry Mexicans were up next. Much to my dismay not only did they not number in the Gazillion, they didn’t seem to be the slightest bit Mexican. Not a sombrero or dirty taco to be seen. That said, the four noisy Caucasians on the stage had the crowd on their feet and everyone facing stage-ward. Their set was dirty, grungy and a hell of a lot of fun. They sound and look like the bastard sons of Nirvana, Queens Of The Stone Age and Tim Minchin.
As good as the support acts were, and there was some quality music played in the opening hours, there was no doubt who punters braved the freezing Melbourne weather for. Headline act Figures.
The five-piece hit the stage with a sonic boom that punched through your chest. The crowd surge was immediate with punters jostling for a good spot. To be honest anywhere in the ‘EV’ was a good spot to hear, and see Figures. Vocalist Mark Tronson’s voice easily cutting through the maelstrom the other four band members were creating. It’s hard to pigeonhole Figures, there are elements of metal-core screams combined with smooth powerful vocals and the off-kilter time signatures of prog rock. Finding out they played with Aussie prog rock masters Caligula’s Horse came as no surprise. There are similarities between Jim Grey and Tronson. One thing the front man does have is a certain amount of stage presence, although he was at times almost overshadowed by bass player Jen Fletcher. She moved around the stage with the ease of a seasoned professional and led the boys in some serious headbanging action.
The boys, and girl mixed it up with a swag of familiar tracks off the Chronos EP, well familiar for me as this was my first time seeing them live. They also with a few older tracks, including ‘Desolate’ off their first, self-titled release. According to Tronson it’s a track they don’t play very often. Hearing the song for the first time I have to wonder why it isn’t a staple of their set list. Following a song they don’t play very often was one they’ve never played before. With us, lucky punters treated to the soon to be released single ‘Cannonball’. I don’t want to harp on about fruity prog rock, but fuck me, if that song is as good as any prog rock as I’ve heard.
Combating freezing conditions and taxi drivers with no sense of direction, this West Australian, like the packed bar full of locals got to experience a hell of a good rock show, and a perfect way to kick off the weekend.
Point Of Doubt
Home To Nothing
Army Of Me