Not long now until Sydney bears witness to the birth of a new All Ages event that’s going to kickstart the city’s much-needed rebirth of the local alternative scene…
In Peril Festival kicks off this weekend featuring a stack of the scene’s best upcoming acts, ready to show you what they’ve been working on and, hopefully, draw in a new crowd of mini-moshers who up until recently only associated the term ‘pit’ with their sandpit!
Having already spoken with headliners Bloom about their involvement and early roots, we reached out to Alt.‘s Dan Richards, Belle Haven‘s David De La Hoz, The Last Martyr‘s Monica Strut and Ghost Complex‘s Jackson Kingsmill for a communal look back at their history of attending all ages shows, the bands they saw at their earliest conception (who have gone onto bigger things), and why you shouldn’t be sitting on the fence about attending…
What initially drew you in to play In Peril Festival?
Alt. – This will only be our third time playing in Sydney and being able to do a more intimate show with bands like Bloom, Belle Haven, Harroway & Wolf & Chain after our run with Northlane is exciting.
Ghost Complex – The lineup! Getting to play with so many friends and bands we admire was an opportunity we couldn’t pass up.
Belle Haven – What isn’t there to love? I’m very much looking forward to watching Bloom and Alt. tear it up, but the lineup in general is outstanding. So many up-and-coming artists all in one place. Additionally, it’s an all-ages event, of which we definitely do not see enough of anymore.
The Last Martyr – How could you say no to that lineup! We haven’t done an AA show in Sydney before either so it’s always nice to be able to do those. Plus Sydney is my hometown so I’m always going to be excited to play there!
What do you remember about your first All Ages show and what significant impact did it have on your career?
Ghost Complex – It was seeing Linkin Park in 2007 and it completely changed my perspective on live music and is what made me want to become a musician in the first place.
Belle Haven – It depends if you mean the first all-ages show Belle Haven played, or the first all-ages show that I attended. But the first AA show that Belle Haven played was a fundraising community-run event in Diamond Creek (small town North East of Melbourne) with 6 or so bands on it. It was our third show ever I think, and I remember being dumbstruck by how many kids my age were there. I felt very awakened and welcomed into the alternative community that day.
The Last Martyr – I remember a guy in the year above at my high school standing out the front of the school gates at home time handing out flyers to the next AA show happening. It was always screamo and hardcore bands – peak MySpace days – and my friends and I would travel to the most random community halls around Sydney to catch a show. Most of my memories involve moshing and losing shoes in the pit and getting stranded at train stations late at night. One time my friend and I were waiting for her older brother to pick us up from some remote station as there were no more trains, and there were some dubious characters about. We’d just watched Outsiders for school so thought we were so ‘tuff’ for smashing beer bottles and holding onto them for protection in case anyone should try something.
Alt. – This will actually be our first AA show so really looking forward to being able to play for people who may not be able to come to our gigs normally. As for my first AA gig as a punter, I was just so excited to be able to see my favourite band which unfortunately is hard to do under 18 these days.
In Peril Fest is the first AA festival in Sydney since Gladys put an end to fun… Why do more events like this need to cater to AA audiences?
The Last Martyr – The memories you build as a teenager are those you’ll have for life. I have so many from AA shows. Plus, I think it’s really important to have representation in the heavy scene at AA events. I never saw any women in local bands when I was young and I’m so grateful when girls come up to me at the AA gigs The Last Martyr have played and say that I’ve inspired them and that they want to start a band too. To me, that is one of the greatest feelings in the world.
Alt. – Younger kids are our future, if we don’t invest in getting kids into our scene it won’t last. It can’t continue without getting the next generation excited and wanting to contribute themselves down the track.
Ghost Complex – Sydney’s live music scene has had it rough since we had not only lockout laws but following that, some pretty serious covid restrictions too. So after about 7 years, Sydney is finally starting to recover and get back to its old self again, even already soaring past Melbourne’s current music scene who previously held the torch for Aussie music. I think the more festivals like this we have in not just Sydney, but the country as a whole, the sooner we can be back to our former glory as a country of top-tier live music.
Belle Haven – Not everyone goes to school with a bunch of friends who also listen to the same music. I know I sure didn’t, not exactly anyway. These AA shows are so important because it opens the door for younger generations to feel welcomed into the alternative community. It’s also an opportunity for those of us who aren’t underage anymore to help encourage a safe space and community for those younger generations to feel comfortable in.
For those discovering your band for the first time prior to the show, what song should they get their mosh on for at In Peril Fest?
Alt. – ‘Insubordinate’ for sure, easily our most popular song, so if you want to give us a go start there and come have some fun!
Belle Haven – If you’re all for vibing with the crowd, we’ll have a good time during ‘Forget Me’. But on the slightly heavier side and room for plenty of moshing, ‘Burn The Witch‘ will go off, no doubt.
Ghost Complex – Our song ‘Deadbeat’ rarely fails to get the crowd moving. That or our newest and heaviest song ‘Mania’ but we have all sorts of dynamic ranges throughout our set for the audience to enjoy!
The Last Martyr – Get ready to throw down to our latest single ‘Sugar.’
In Peril offers the alternative scene a chance to play a festival alongside some great upcomers – who are you keen to watch on the day?
The Last Martyr – I’m keen to see Atlvs as well as hear Revoid play some filthy breakdowns. But how do you pick… It’s just going to be one giant mosh fest.
Belle Haven – As I said earlier, particularly keen to watch Bloom and Alt. But there are also a few bands I haven’t seen for a long time, or ever, like The Last Martyr and Wolf & Chain. Additionally, I am actively (vocal) coaching a couple of the singers on the line up so very eager to see them step up and nail it.
Alt. – Can’t wait to see our mates in Belle Haven and Wolf & Chain absolutely slay. But keen to see a Bloom & Harroway hometown show!
Ghost Complex – Harroway will be a standout for us considering Matt has been at the helm of organising this festival and has been a friend of ours in the scene. Along with that our drummer Natalie is a massive fan of Bloom and can’t wait to share a stage with them. And of course, Belle Haven because they’ve been such a staple of the alt music scene the past few years and their singer David is a good friend of mine and my vocal coach! So I’m keen to embarrass myself in front of him. But there is no weak link in the lineup and we can’t wait to see all the bands.
Seeing bands early into their careers is a milestone that us fans get to talk about for years to come – who do you recall seeing in their earliest conception, that have gone onto huge things later in their careers?
Belle Haven – Will always remember watching The Getaway Plan play a small AA outdoor show to about 40 people back in like 2008, and only played 3 songs because the outdoor stage was apparently at risk of collapsing. Things took off for them not long after that.
Alt. – Northlane is probably the biggest homegrown glow up I’ve seen. I remember seeing them at Riot! Nightclub in Adelaide to about 30 people. Then we got to support them at the Enmore Theatre. Can you really glow up more than that? Internationally; Seeing Twenty One Pilots open for Paramore and You Me At Six, to now see the global juggernaut they are. Pre-covid I got to see them headline the same arena they opened that show in. Unreal scenes.
The Last Martyr – I remember Spiritbox releasing their first tune with a video filmed on an iPhone that Mike edited himself I’m pretty sure. I always knew they’d blow up and am stoked for them they have.
Ghost Complex – I remember seeing Northlane in 2012 supporting Parkway on a basketball court and it blew my mind. And since then and to this day they have been my favourite band. On top of that, my favourite show I’ve ever been to was seeing stories, Polaris and Belle Haven in 2016 at the Red Rattler. Seems kinda poetic that In Peril will be held at the site of my favourite gig of all time with one of the bands that played that night.
Final thoughts for those on the fence?
Belle Haven – What are you doing on the fence? Looks uncomfortable. Come to In Peril Fest instead.
Ghost Complex – Sydney’s music scene has been dying for way too long, it’s starting to make its comeback so make sure you’re there to see it blossom once again. In Peril Fest will play a key part of that resurrection!
Alt. – It’s going to be such a fun show, come support at the grassroots and you may discover your new favourite band. We can’t wait!
The Last Martyr – AA shows are where memories and good friends are made. A chance to escape and be surrounded by like-minded legends. Can’t wait to see you there!
Follow your communal kings and queens on socials
In Peril Festival
feat. Bloom, Belle Haven.
Alt., Harroway, Wolf & Chain, The Last Martyr, ATLVS, Bury Me, Ghost Complex, Revoid, Catalyst and local opener, Blindsight
October 15th @ The Red Rattler, Sydney
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