1st March 2020
Crowbar, Brisbane QLD
Supports: Crystal Lake, Mirrors
While the biggest tour of the year wound up on Saturday night, US post-hardcore act Wage War decided to play their own headliner shows around their supporting slot for Polaris. Bringing along Japanese metalcore powerhouse Crystal Lake and upcoming Melbourne outfit Mirrors, this was bound to be a mini headliner worthy of attendance.
Mirrors got the full house venue off to a great start with their dark, toned down metalcore vibe, and I was definitely impressed and keen to hear more from them later in the year. The band’s theatrical stage presence definitely sets them apart amongst the plethora of heavy musical talent this country is experiencing right now.
Being such a small venue, and hearing of the hype surrounding Japan’s Crystal Lake on the Polaris tour over the weekend, I was a little wary if Crowbar would be able to handle this tiny sold out gig. But the anticipation for this next act was real alright, and you could feel it from every corner of the room. I was kinda predicting a similar insane, mind blowing performance to what I experienced with Crossfaith last year. I was half right. HOLY FUCK. Crystal Lake are on a completely different level of metalcore, all by themselves. The walls of Crowbar cracked that night, due to the Metalocalypse brought on by Crystal fuckin’ Lake and the multiple wall of deaths erupting in the mosh. From ‘Aeon’ to ‘Apollo’, the boys’ performance was truly out of this world, and I have never witnessed a live performance quite like it. Frontman Ryo is an absolute beast on the stage (and in the pit!).
I kind of feel for Wage War, being that it was their headliner, and they had to follow that insane performance just before. I don’t know how any band can match Crystal Lake, but the Floridian group took to the stage one final time in Australia to rock their absolute hardest for the fans. It was still a hot’n’ heavy mess for Wage War, and while tracks like ‘Prison’ and ‘Alive’ was a beast in the moshpit, a particular highlight of the evening for me was hearing the post-hardcore ballad ‘Me Against Myself’ live. This song is a standout for the band in their live performance, and allows guitarist/clean vocalist Cody Quistad the opportunity to shine. Wage War‘s ability to pen emotional, relatable lyrics is ever so evident right throughout their set, and they managed to rock the entire sold out venue into a state of upheaval.
While Wage War definitely made quite the impression on the crowd, it was Japan’s Crystal Lake that’ll have the entire Australian heavy music community talking for days, weeks, and even months about this tour following their debut performance down under, 18 years in the making… If you were one of the few people that missed out on the Polaris tour, I would absolutely recommend you study Crystal Lake‘s music until the inevitable headliner tour (it’s happening, alright, we all know it!) and get ready to experience the show of a lifetime!
Who I Am
Don’t Let Me Fade Away
Me Against Myself
Review by Tamara May (@citylightstam)