Headliner: Hands Like Houses
Venue: Paradox Frezza, 86 Derrimut Rd, Hoppers Crossing, Victoria 3029
Presented By: Paradox Freeza & New World Artists
It’s has been while since I have seen Hands Like Houses and I thought it was time to go see them again, what a way to spend a Saturday night, sitting back and see some local bands put on a killer show, Never again will Hands Like Houses play such a small and intimate venue again.
Photo: Brendan Weibrecht
The night kicked off with doors opening at 6pm and The Liliacs on at 6:20pm, now I had never seen or heard of The Liliacs before Saturday night but I truly was surprised how good this local support act where, usually for the opening act not many patrons would come out early to check out but these boys brought a crowd, there was an estimated 30-40 patrons there for these guys which is unheard of for an opening band. Their overall live performance as an up and coming band was tight, the combination of distorted rhythm guitar and clean lead guitar blended really well, unfortunately there was far to much bass in the overall mix, this ended up drowning out the lead guitar parts which was very unfortunate. Oh my, the vocals sounded amazing when they were present but once again the lead vocals were drowned out by the bass guitar and were non existent in the overall live mix. The fella’s in The Liliacs are defiantly a band to check out, through their sound they have created a cross breed between Violent Soho and Aburden.
Whilst waiting for waiting for White Crows to hit the stage I decided I would check out the rest of the venue, the overall layout of the venue was set out very well, they had the band room for the live music then their was another section of the building allocated for mercy sales, now in this room their was not only march sales their were also old arcade games for free use, which in my books is pretty sick, there were also coach for patrons to sit back and relax and rest their feet whilst they wait for the next band to go on.
After relaxing for a bit, White Crows hit the stage at 7:10pm and holy shit once again another local band that I had never heard of or checked out before Saturday and I was blown away, the display of local on the night was unreal. The overall mix for White Crows was much better than the previous band as all elements were mixed well and nothing clashed or drowned out any other elements of the 5 piece band, The font man Jon Rhodes brought what seemed to be an endless amount of energy to the bands live performance, jumping in and out of the crowd and the pit with each song, encouraging the audience to move, although most of the audience just moved out of his way their were some patrons including myself who decided to join in. On the night the band had a fill in rhythm guitarist and this did not seem to have any noticeable negative impact on the band and their live performance, Overall I was very impressed with the lead vocalist for his performance even though he had lost his voice. Mid way through White Crows a young little boy was moshing harder than anyone else in the pit, constantly displaying his devil horns and cheering and singing along on the shoulders of an older man. White Crows are another band that if you haven’t checked out yet you really should.
Photo: Jon Rhodes
The next band to hit the stage was Above All, Local 4 piece rock band, these guys where not what I expected to be on the same lineup as Hands Like Houses, but these fellas proved that they deserved to be on this lineup, All their songs were catchy and anybody could pick up the lyrical content quickly and easily. The mix between distorted fuzzy guitar tone and a rock solid bass worked quite well, these guys actually reminded me of Sound Garden, especially the vocalist he sounded a lot like Chris Cornel (RIP). Although the band sounded great I would have liked a lot more of a stage presence from each member, they were all confined to their section on stage and for most of the time they didn't leave their spots. (Here is some footage from their previous shows)
When Stuck Out hit the stage the whole room went off, everyone was getting into them, screaming lyrics, moving and jumping around, never before had I seen Stuck Out but now that I have I would highly recommend checking them out and I would go see them again any day of the week. Their songs were catchy as fuck and never before have I seen a local band put so much energy into their live performance, they commanded the crowd as a band should, each member had an amazing stage presence commanding all sections of both the audience and the stage. The overall mix of the band sounded great but once again the bass was far too loud in the mix, it didn’t drown out any other element of the band but still was far, far to loud. If you haven’t checked out Stuck Out they are a must, you will not be disappointed, they deliver the same quality live as they do on their recordings.
Now for the band that we had all been waiting for, Hands Like Houses. Now I had only seen HLH once before Saturday night and they were amazing the last time I saw them so I had high expectations, let me tell you once again they raised the bar since I last saw them, HLH did not disappoint. All members giving it their all not leaving any energy unused, this energy flowed on from the band to the crowd and then the energy that the crowd produced went on to flow back to band, this created a very intimate connection between the band and the audience. The overall mix of the band was the best of the night, all elements mixed well and nothing clashed, and for the first time of the night the bass wasn’t dominating the mix, thank god. HLH use of clean and distorted is cleverly used to create their signature sound that makes HLH stand out from other bands. Their front man has to be one of the best front men that I personally have ever seen.
Overall the night was well worth the $15 tickets, never again will I be able to see Hands Like Houses in such a small and intimate venue, if you haven’t checked out the local support acts for this show ’Stuck Out, Above All, White Crows and Liliacs’ I would highly recommend that you do.
Bassy McBassist of Stuck Out, doing his thing!
On one final note remember to go out and support your local music scene, let’s keep music alive and roaring within Australia.