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Words by Kyra-Jade Coombs

Pix by JD Punisher Photography

It was a raining and miserable night in Brisbane, perfect conditions for a sold-out open-air gig, right?

Anyone who lives in Brisbane knows that the M1 is a freaking nightmare at the best of times and a mix of terrible drivers and weather resulted in a late start to the gig for us.

Luckily our photographer JD was there front and centre to report that even though Daine addressed that she was unwell, she still put on one hell of a show and the crowd really enjoyed her performance. As for Make Them Suffer, they were ‘fucking amazing’. Perfect musicianship teamed with visuals to complete the performance. A great opportunity for our Aussie artists to shine and share the stage with international artists on a major sold-out tour.

You could hear the crowd at Riverstage from over a few kilometres away and it set the tone for the night. As I walked into the venue you could see balloons gently floating over the crowd and fans eagerly awaiting Sleep Token. It is a weak spot for me seeing kids with their parents at gigs and there were plenty running around with their tiny little band shirts on ready to soak up their first concert and blossom their love for this genre.

The lights went down, and you could hear the ‘Sleep Token siren’ sound. Phones immediately came up to record for what felt like forever which begs the question… how long are people willing to record for before something happens?

As the stage lights came on the crowd went absolutely mental as the band appeared, clapping along in time with the lights. Now, I’ve never claimed to be a Sleep Token fan, but I was certainly keen to see why people are so devoted to them.

It was a lot to take in, I appreciate the cohesive outfits and stage layout first and foremost. One thing I really enjoyed seeing were the backup singers serving beautiful harmonies. It added a really nice touch to their show.

Sleep Token deliver a different energy to what I’m used to. You could see the bass player III trying to move the audience, but it wasn’t happening. I always hear and read about the Vessel being an alluring enigma, however this is something I just didn’t connect with. There was a nice moment when they played Rain, starting off with Vessel playing a keyboard to the audience in an intimate setting, and you could almost hear a pin drop. The song slowly builds and adds more elements with the band joining in and that was really cool to watch.

Sleep Token really are a genre-bending band who do have a lot to offer, I just don’t know where it sits for me. I get that they are going for a different approach to music, but I would have loved to see them address the crowd. I missed that connection you feel from the crowd interactions and found myself waiting for some kind of window into their personalities. The show was over, and they just left, no goodbyes/ thank you/ encores. Wham, bam, thank you ma’am.

I’ve been lucky enough to see Bring Me The Horizon play a few times now. Only briefly at Good Things 2022 and before that, in 2011 on their There is a Hell tour with Cancer Bats and Bullet for My Valentine and there was a Soundwave in there somewhere too. It’s safe to say I was so excited to see what they have transformed into, they have grown and morphed so much over the years.

As soon as the screens turned on, the whole mood went into overdrive. It was really clever how they started the show. Both screens displayed Post Human – PRESS THE START BUTTON. In true Aussie ‘occa’ fashion, some fella behind us screamed, ‘press the fuckin’ start button then would ya’.

AI Eve presented herself on the screen describing our impending doom and demanding to see mosh pits after detecting zero. I loved how they had that crowd interaction by scanning and zooming in on a live camera, making hilarious accusations.

After being vetted by Eve and she called us all “weak as fuck”, it was Bring Me The Horizon’s turn to whip the crowd into a frenzy. As the backdrop, they had church-stained windows with stunning colours, that would turn out to be an integral part to the night’s back story. As the rain started to pick up, they exploded into Darkside with confetti string cannons to boot and it was glorious!

The energy of the crowd didn’t dull down as they turned through hits like MANTRA and Teardrops, the sing-alongs were mesmerizing. During AmEN they pulled out the big guns with pyros and honestly, it was just nice to have the warmth after getting wet and freezing our fucking arses off! They got to Kool-Aid and they had this Cyborg wanting to break out through the screens, building as the song got more intense with strong lasers going over the crowd, and it was fucking sick! It reminded me of Excisions visuals, IYKYK!

I wondered if they would have a nod to their past music, and I was happy that they indulged my teenage self by playing Diamonds Aren’t Forever from their 2008 album Suicide Season. Full circle moment completed.

This show was really special. A huge testament to Bring Me The Horizon for being able to morph and grow as a band and accommodate all walks of life. You don’t have to be a token emo kid to enjoy their music. I had a lady in front of me dancing like Stevie Nicks with a flower headband, head banging in between and having the time of her life. This is what music is all about, right? What a great show!

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