Regurgitator – Gig Review & Photo Gallery 13th May @ The Forum, Melbourne, VIC
The Forum, Melbourne, VIC
May 13th, 2023
Supports: DZ Deathrays, Custard, Butterfingers and Glitoris
I have always said that the inside of The Forum is like being in a jewellery box, so it seems only fitting that it’s a live music venue. One of the larger venues in Melbourne, The Forum has seen it’s fair share of great gigs, and Saturday was no exception. More of a mini festival than your average gig, with 5 bands including the headliners, and a start time of 5.30, Regurgitator brought some of the best Aussie 90’s alternative/rock bands with them on their 25 Years Of UNIT tour.
The night kicked off with Brisbane outfit Glitoris, who were all dressed in the same outfit of grey camo pants and fluoro yellow shirts. My immediate thoughts about Glitoris were a band of mums, but in a cool way not a ‘my-mum-thinks-she’s-cooler-than-she-actually-is’ kind of way. If I had to name a few bands that Glitoris made me think of, it would definitely have to be a cross between Bikini Kill, Letters To Cleo, and weirdly in some places, The Bedroom Philosopher. The downside to this show having a mammoth lineup, is that the show kicked off at 5.30pm, which meant that Glitoris only had a barebones crowd inside the venue, BUT, the crowd was really responsive to the four-piece. They urged us to make ‘smart but sustainable choices’ before launching into a song about capitalism, and the best moment was their closing song, ‘Slut Power’, which involved the crowd chanting the lyric “Slut Power” along with the band, and it was more of a spoken song than one including singing, but it was fire!
Next up, the band that has the best name in the business, Butterfingers. The crowd was slowly starting to build up again when the three-piece took to the stage, and they came out with energy right from the off. They’re a super synthy rap rock band who give off vibes like You Am I, Hilltop Hoods and Area 7. The crowd was still on the smaller side, but everyone was cheering and supportive and spent most of the band’s set dancing. It’s always satisfying to see an Australian band sing with their Australian accents, especially when they’re singing a song called ‘Evil Eddie‘, which is basically a song about shaking your “Gluteus Maximus” in the band’s direction. Some people did but vocalist Eddie Jacobson was disappointed and asked us after the song “Thought some of you would at least show your back to us and shake your gluteus maximus, Melbourne is a party town, right?”. Whilst performing their track ‘Hook Up’ they brought out Melbourne/Naarm local, Fresh Violet, to do guest vocals.
Self-Proclaimed ‘stupid stars’ Custard were the mid-point of the set, and they’re the epitome of ‘Dad-Rock’ in both the vibe from the band members themselves, and musically. Jokingly in my notes from the evening, about Custard, I made the comment of ‘I felt like I was at my best friend’s Dad’s birthday party, and he and his mates suddenly became the band performing at the party and absolutely slayed it’. The venue was definitely fuller by this point, and the audience were very into Custard and their set. The band came on with an incredibly upbeat and happy energy, and that flowed through for the duration of the set. Vocalist Dave McCormack (you know, Bandit from Bluey!) took a few moments to acknowledge his band members, specifically drummer Glenn Thompson and “The Glenn Thompson Ankle” that holds the whole band together musically and keeps it all tight during their performances. Glenn also came out from behind the drums to take lead vocals from one of the tracks, and the little shake-up definitely made it a bit different. Custard flew through their setlist, interacting and talking to the crowd between songs to make it last a little longer, including a cover of ‘Video Killed The Radio Star’ by 80’s synth-poppers, The Buggles; their version was a little slower than the original, but still super enjoyable.
Due to Custard finishing their set a little earlier than scheduled, it felt like an age before DZ Deathrays took to the stage. The cool thing about DZ is that they had an ever-changing and evolving backdrop throughout their set that was slowly revealed right at the start as the band took to the stage. Their red-heavy lighting while playing did make it a little difficult to be able to see the post-punkers at times (at least from where I was standing), but that didn’t really take anything away from their performance. The other big point of difference between DZ and the previous bands is that they’re a lot more ‘modern’, and were the heaviest band of the night. As with the previous bands, they powered through their set, not really interacting with the crowd between songs, but the crowd were eating up their performance and vibing from start to finish. About midway through their set, DZ had a bit of a jam session, which was a nice way to break up their almost hour-long slot, and there was a lot of moshing happening in the almost-capacity crowd on the main floor of The Forum. The band could see the crowd perfectly and this was demonstrated when drummer Simon Ridley threw a can of beer from behind the drum kit and into the crowd, targeting someone specifically enough that they could catch it mid-air and with one hand. New bassist for DZ, Luke Henery (ex-Violent Soho), also has the most glorious hair I’ve ever seen and he spent the majority of the time he was on stage windmilling while he was rocking out.
At around 10pm, The Forum was finally at complete capacity and ready for the main attraction, Regurgitator, to take the stage. As the intro to ‘Everybody Wants To Rule The World’ by Tears For Fears began over the loudspeakers, the lights went down and an almighty roar arose from the crowd as The Gurge, led by Quan Yeomans, literally ran onto the stage in some stylish, matching yellow tracksuits. There were some small technical difficulties in the opening part of the set, but Quan did take that as an opportunity to pull out his phone out and record the whole crowd to say Happy Birthday to his son, Bowie, who I’m sure will appreciate how cool that is! Drummer Peter Kostic was even using his drumsticks as binoculars at one point, and I’m not too sure how effective it would have been, but it looked pretty cool! Ben Ely took a moment to say that it had been The Gurge’s lifelong dream to play at The Forum, and they were finally getting their chance. Throughout the entire set of both some of their greatest hits, as well as UNIT in full, the band’s backdrop was a constantly changing and evolving, very 90’s themed, pop-art project, including some pretty iconic 90’s commercials. Whilst Quan was having his technical difficulties he told us both to ‘bounce like it’s the 90’s’ and we got some pretty good jokes too. I was only a kid when UNIT came out, but their backdrop reminded me of being a kid and sitting in my lounge room on a Sunday morning and watching Rage, and it was a great nostalgia trip.
After playing ‘Track 1′ the band ran off stage again, only to run back on in some fantastic, shiny silver jumpsuits, while keyboardist Shane Rudken came out in a bunny suit, which stayed on as the band played their way through the album in question. Quan repeatedly had to pull his jumpsuit from his crotch and apologised partway through the set for his ‘Moose Knuckle’, and blamed it on the jumpsuits having Chinese sizing. Shane was ridiculously interactive with the crowd throughout the whole set, running from one side to the other and bouncing around during songs. Whilst the entire night was a highlight, a few particularly memorable moments were everyone from the main floor, to the booths, to the raised standing area at the back of the venue dancing during ‘! (The Song Formerly Known As)‘, the ‘Enter Sandman’ outro to ‘Black Bugs’, and finally, the entire room singing ‘I Will Lick Your Arsehole‘. I also thoroughly enjoyed Quan’s lyric change in ‘Polyester Girl’ from “All I Want You To Do, Is Stare At The Wall” to “All I want you to do, is stare at my balls” which was hard not to do in the shiny silver ensemble. After finishing UNIT from start to finish, instead of leaving the stage before the encore, the boys had a quick band meeting before playing two final songs to close out the night.
The whole night was a wonderful trip down nostalgia and memory lane, with The Gurge’s set feeling a little like an acid trip without the negative side effects. I’m hoping the band continue to play shows for another album anniversary, and if not, I’ll be eagerly awaiting UNIT‘s 30th in 2027 to enjoy it all over again!
Gig Review by Kelsey Trevan @kelsey_139
I Sucked A Lot Of Cock To Get Where I Am
Blood and Spunk
Bong In My Eye
G7 Dick Electro Boogie
I Like Your Old Stuff Better Than Your New Stuff
! (The Song Formerly Known As)
Black Bugs w/ Enter Sandman Outro
The World Of Sleaze
I Piss Alone
I Will Lick Your Arsehole
Just Another Beautiful Story
I Wanna Be A Nudist
Kong Foo Sing
Photo Gallery by Clinton Hatfield. Insta: @ampd.agency.
Please credit Wall of Sound and Clinton Hatfield if you repost photos.
Regurgitator – UNIT 25th Anniversary Tour