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Gig Review: Sydney – Architects + Stick To Your Guns + Supports

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Architects + Stick To Your Guns + Being As An Ocean + Stories
UNSW Roundhouse, Sydney
16 April  2015
Review and photo by Melissa Rochfort

The Roundhouse saw an epic evening of international hardcore heavyweights on Thursday night, led by Brighton’s own Architects, with international support from Californians Stick To Your Guns and Being As An Ocean, and local support from Sydney-siders Stories.

It was sweltering inside the Roundhouse from the beginning with a mixture of humidity and sweat, but that didn’t stop a hefty sized crowd show up early to show their support for Stories, who were a perfect pick to open the night’s proceedings with their unique mix of eerie heaviness. By the end of their set, the whole floor was clapping and cheering for them.

Being As An Ocean were up next with their comparatively more melodic mix of deep and heavy screams with spoken word lyrics. Despite quite a number of the crowd having not previously heard of the band, more and more people emerged from the back towards the front as their set progressed, clearly converting fans with each song. Vocalist Joel Quartuccio created a communal atmosphere with the crowd early on in their set when he jumped down to the barricades during The Hardest Part Is Forgetting Those You Swore You Would Never Forget, where he walked the length of the barricade screaming the lyrics alongside avid fans, before diving into the crowd for a surf. The absolute highlight of their set came in the form of This Loneliness Won’t Be The Death of Me, where Joel launched into the crowd and walked from the front of the floor all the way to the back, with the crowd screaming and scrambling along and giving their longest and loudest claps and cheers at the close of the song.

The pace picked up when Stick To Your Guns burst onto the stage starting with Nobody, which got the crowd rowdy with fans tumbling over the barricade in quick succession. The biggest circle pit of their set started up during What Choice Did You Give Us? with the majority of the back half of the floor circulating some much needed air around the venue. Midway through the set, vocalist Jesse Barnett paused to share some words with the crowd, beginning with the all-too relatable tale of parents not understanding the appeal of hardcore music when you can’t understand the words through the screaming. Uproarious cheers and claps erupted when he emphasised how it’s not necessarily about the words, but about the feeling it gives you. The definite crowd favourite of the set was I Choose Nothing, with fans at the back scrambling towards the front to get amongst the action, belting out the words as fists were thrown into the air.

With the stage lighting creating an oceanic feel by the illuminated dark blue fog, Architects stepped out on stage for their biggest show of their tour to huge cheers from the crowd. They launched straight into Broken Crosses, with the second part of the opening line being screamed solely by the crowd with enormous volume, and from the first ‘blegh’ their phenomenal stage presence surged through the crowd. Devil’s Island, Early Grave and Naysayer followed, all of which were performed flawlessly with an incredible amount of energy from both band and crowd. C.A.N.C.E.R. generated the biggest circle pit of the evening, which contrasted nicely with the clean vocal part of the song where Sam Carter was illuminated at his microphone stand by slow moving streams of white light. These Colours Don’t Run closed the main set on a high note, with Jon Green of Deez Nuts providing guest vocals and both band and crowd were head banging in unison during the heaviest breakdown of the night. The highlight of the entire night came with Gravedigger, which was dedicated to both Sea Shepherd – who had a booth set up next to the merch table – and local legends Northlane. It was clearly the song everyone had been waiting all evening to hear, with the loudest crowd vocals and the most involved moshing of the night.

Every band on the bill gave their all on stage, and as the exhausted yet ecstatic crowd exited the venue at the end of the night, it was evident the crowd also gave all they had. Overall, this was one of the best gigs I’ve ever experienced, and will no doubt go down as one of the biggest and best hardcore gigs of the year!

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