Review by By Hannah Lewis Dalby
The wait was over – Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes were finally back with a five night tour showcasing their 2019 album End of Suffering.
The follow up album certainly introduces us to a different side to this band – with more melodies and lyrics – it’s clear that Frank has a lot more to say.
The gig was at The Roundhouse at UNSW with its smooth curves and sci-fi-esque circular ceiling lighting rig, a venue much smaller than the bands last escapade to Sydney, supporting Bring Me The Horizon. Perfect for the night – and a band that Frank says, can get away with doing things a bit differently…slow dancing to Love Games anyone?
First up was local Newcastle band Eat Your Heart Out, opening the show with a set packed with short emo-punky songs from their debut album Florescence. The lead singer Caitlin Henry got the small but perfectly formed crowd moving as they listened to a sound that has evolved for the band after 3EPs and major international tours supporting US giants like Sum 41.
A. Swayze and the Ghosts brought the charisma and swagger to the stage with their ‘garage-punk’ sounds – lead singer A. Swayze dishing out all the moves. We were treated to cocky but real punk beats and hip thrusts throughout the set until the 10 minute long Reciprocation offered a change of pace and sentiment to the evening. It was worth every minute as the audience hung onto every word, riding the relatable rollercoaster highs and lows of unreciprocated romantic feelings.
Finally it was time for Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes to take to the stage – the audience were ready – there were young kids on parents shoulders, and what seemed to be a good mix of new and old fans. The new looking forward to hearing the music live for the first time, the old waiting to see at which point Frank would jump into the crowd and demand ‘LIFT ME UP’ – a classic move now expected at every gig. And he didn’t disappoint – by the second song he was out with the people, up in the air, phones everywhere filming his every move. Frank is the real deal on stage. Yes, you get a performance, but you could imagine what you see is what you get. He demands respect from the audience, kicking someone out for continued rude behaviour, creating a safe space for a ladies only mosh pit (the ladies went HARD!) and dedicating a song to his 5 year old daughter…that you better appreciate! But he also wears his heart on his sleeve. It’s his storytelling and sharing of personal experiences between songs that keeps the audience together with him throughout the gig.
Grateful to be supported by the audience while so far away from home, the band recalled how very sorry they had been when stepping off the plane in Sydney to the smell of bushfire smoke. Finishing with the song ‘I hate you’, dedicated to all those in leadership positons making bad decisions in these recent crucial times.
Photos by By Sergio Martin