The Hideaway Bar, Sydney VIC
April 19th, 2019
Supports: Black Knuckles, Wolf Creek and Weight of the World
Whether you jam on classic hard rock, punk, post-hardcore or metal – If you were in the crowd at The Hideaway Bar on Good Friday, it was all about celebrating rising local talent in the heavy community. Rose to the occasion they did.
It was expected that the venue would be packed out later on when the headliners showed up, but the early turnout was impressive. Heavy music fans assembled well before rockers Black Knuckles hit the tiny stage.
Excitement was building.
The energy displayed by the four-piece was palpable, underscored by dirty grunge vibes and a strong Motörhead influence that filled the room. While there wasn’t a whole lot of movement from the guys themselves, the crowd was still engaged. That kicked well up a notch when the band broke out into a blistering cover of Nirvana‘s ‘Breed’, sending gig-goers into an uproar.
Then, it was time for alt-metal group Wolf Creek, a band formed last year from the remnants of previous project Badge Of Honour.
The heaviness definitely dialled up with these guys, yet the melodic undercurrent running through their songs helped balance out the set. Vocalist Chase Bosward was often a blur, jumping around and getting close to the crowd. The man behind the kit, Hugh L Jones, was a standout, providing a razor-sharp edge to the short but sweet set.
Now post-hardcore boys Weight of the World had done a small string of gigging leading up to this one, tearing The Valve Bar and Bull N Bush Hotel loose a few weeks ago with tracks from debut EP Judgement. With a setlist change significantly shifting what they’ve done in previous years, it was interesting to see how that translated at The Hideaway, a venue they’ve been cutting their teeth on.
The tightness of the unit showed. A slightly unfamiliar crowd took a little while to warm up, however soon enough they were in the grip of compelling frontman Heath Gandy, who took the time out to thank the venue as well as the previous bands.
‘Look Alive’, driven by the dynamic drumming of Chris Goodie, caused much of the mosh to do exactly that, and a honed cover of Rage Against The Machine classic ‘Bulls On Parade’ was an absolute banger (the guy in the front row losing his shit the entire set was great to see too).
Although the flow of the show was affected by previous set delays and FANGZ needing to take the stage on time, that didn’t stop Weight of the World from delivering a raucous one.
It was certainly special on both ends when the punk rockers came on. Not only were they doing their third stint of a residency at the bar, but it was guitarist Sam Sheumack‘s birthday (bassist Jameel Majam counted four birthdays in total for the night).
The gig opened with Majam’s cheeky grin as he brought us in, the calm before the storm that was the entire band. Particularly prowling, jumping vocalist Josh Cottreau.
Stage dives. Singing from atop the bar. Beer cans everywhere.
The gig had it all, imbuing the venue with a transformative quality, and a feeling you only get at a dirty, sweaty punk rock show. Cottreau was animalistic and the crowd ate it up.
Getting down with the mosh, he handed the mic directly to diehard fans, all the while accepting beer cans from them – which he proceeded to bang into his head while still moving and singing at top speed. His individual dynamics with the stoic Sheumack and wild Majam also breathed huge life into the set.
About halfway through, the FANGZ tunes stopped for a few moments as cupcakes got handed around for Sheumack and the song was sung. A real family vibe enveloped the venue, a brief calm before the storm’s second wave.
As we left the bar that night, sweat-ridden and ears ringing, one dominant thought came to mind – FANGZ are going places.
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Be sure to catch the punk rockers when they hit the last night of their residency at The Hideaway Bar tomorrow, free entry – Event details here.
Review by Genevieve Gao
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