Last night, Sydney was the first in Australia to witness the extraordinarily anticipated Big Ass Tour featuring A Day to Remember and Australia’s own The Amity Affliction headlining. Hundreds of fans lined the Qantas Credit Union Arena for a night of screams, jumps and to hear the songs that possibly changed a life.
The Ghost Insides replacements for the Big Ass tour- Hands like Houses who hail from Canberra (whom the singer Trenton Woodley reminded us about around 6 times during their short 30 minute set) started the show off with an energetically infused performance. HLH reminded us of a Johnny Craig era Emarosa. We felt they needed more versatility within their set as it just started to turn into one long song. Their tune New Romantics seemed to pump the early crowd up.
Whilst waiting for Motionless in White to debut their first time playing in Australia, not on Soundwave, the soundtrack from The Nightmare before Christmas bellowed through the space- which felt rather fitting. With a haunting track to introduce them to the stage Motionless In White jumped right into it with singer Chris Motionless’ hair staying perfectly straight without a stray in sight and the theatrics of masks and cloaks entertained the crowd. Singing through their songs, they gave themselves a short minute break with the theme from American Horror Story as an interlude in-between playing through songs such as Abigail, Immaculate Misconception,Devil’s Night and A M E R I C A which seemed to be a bit of a spelling lesson but the band had the crowd screaming fuck in the chorus. It seemed they were aware that some punters may not be sure about “what they were watching” as Chris put it and thanked them for coming out early anyway, as well as having an ode to their good friends TGI. After a Linkin Park cover of the hit song One Step Closer they ended their set. MIW played an absolutely killer set which left for quite high standards for the rest of the night!
Running reasonably on time, the stage was being set up for the ever entertaining A Day To Remember and the room was buzzing in wonder what antics ADTR would have in store for us this show, and did they deliver! Within the opening song The Downfall of Us All, accompanied by a live stream on the screens, confetti guns sprayed colour all throughout the arena. As usual singer Jeremy McKinnon was charming and happy and smiling along with making the stage his own and making sure to acknowledge each part of the venue. We wondered what antics, and boy, did we get antics with ADTR living up to their cheeky nature with circle pits in their newer songs Right Back At It Again and City of Ocala, rolls of toilet paper thrown out in All Signs Point to Lauderdale as well as crowd surfers on top of crowd surfers which began in 2nd sucks and strayed throughout the night. Have Faith in Me, as usual was an absolute crowd killer with a confusing sense of sadness and happiness throughout the fans, as well as bringing back an older song which they haven’t played for years – My Life For Hire. Towards the end of the set the acoustics came out and an amazing rendition of Oasis’ Champagne Supernova started a wave of emotion throughout the crowd, which continued throughout If It Means A Lot To You, that is always a crowd favourite, was accompanied by a firefly effect of phones and lighters throughout. To close their set ADTR threw it back to the old days and played The Plot to Bomb the Panhandle which was a perfect end to a flawless set.
At around 10pm the lights dimmed and the ear piercingly loud roar of the crowd began as our own hardcore legends The Amity Affliction came to stage and just owned the whole atmosphere. Knowing TAA don’t need any form of introduction, they started with Open Letter where confetti which seemed like silver raindrops, which was followed by a plethora of white “Amity” balloons later in the show, showered all over the crowd who were bellowing the lyrics out as hard as they could. Throughout the set they played their beloved hits Chasing Ghosts, Youngblood’s, I Hate Hartley, Anchors, The Weigh Down, Forest Fire, and Bondi St Blues along with new song Shine On. Within the whole set it’s impossible to pick what was a true fan favourite because there seemed to be a constant plateau of pure energy between the band and the fans, as if they were feeding off each other. The only quam that we seemed to have was how pitchy and off clean vocalist’s Ahren Stringers were, whereas the rest of the band where almost too perfect- but with the amount of touring that TAA do, it’s not surprising for either of those statements.
Amity know how to hold a crowd in their palm and finished the show with Pittsburgh and Don’t Lean on Me. After such a long line up and show, no one stopped for one second as moshing, circle pits and lost voices were prominent throughout.
The Big Ass Tour was one of the hardcore shows that Sydney needed for a long time and we’d be surprised if this tour isn’t the best way to end the year within the countries Metalcore scene.