Good things come in threes, or so it is said, and tonight I am making my way to Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion for a ménage a tróis of Pop Punk goodness. Yes, the always ‘Life of The Party” band that is All Time Low, have landed on our shores and are making their way across all capital cities for their biggest tour of Australia yet. Accompanying them for the ride are Welsh pop punk sensations Neck Deep and the ‘Lovely, Little, Lonely’ band The Maine.
The Maine have been around a few years now and have an impressive back catalogue of hits and it’s a pity they have just the opening slot to hit us with them. They open with their ‘get your heart racing track’ Black Butterflies and Déjà Vu, the latest single of the new Album. The Maine quickly set the tempo for the rest of the night and even though it is the start of things to come, the crowd inside the Hordern is swelling and on the track Girls Do What They Want they made their voices heard as the chorus is sung back to the band loud and proud. Ending the short and sweet set with the feel good Bad Behaviour, I really would like to have seen more of The Maine, and hopefully I will get my chance real soon.
Next up in tonight’s massive triple-head extravaganza are the Welsh pop punks, Neck Deep. These guys come out blistering onto the stage much like they have blisteringly emerged onto the music scene. They waste no time kicking it off with the bone crushing Gold Steps which created an instant mosh. Follow that up with a dash of Lime Street you have kids and bodies everywhere almost Losing Teeth, but hey What Did You Expect.
This 5-piece group are tight, as the dual guitar work just gets one’s heart and mind racing. Frontman Ben Barlow, really knows how to work the crowd and interact as he encourages back flips for cash. His vocals sound great off the Hordern’s walls especially on the haunting Serpents. Bassist/back up vocalist, Fil Thorpe-Evans, really got his time to shine on Kali Ma. I swear these guys can do no wrong as the crowd was loving every second of having them on stage. Our time was heading to its end but not before they gave us December which was very well loved indeed.You just know this is every fans’ favourite song from the album Life’s Not Out to Get You, as we filled in on the part sang by Blink 182’s Mark Hoppus, it was one of those sweet moments you can only get by seeing live music. Giving it up for every band on tonight’s bill, Neck Deep decide to depart and give us one last chance to kick things up and have the whole place bounce up and down with Can’t Kick Up the Roots, Fuck Yea!!
After two stellar warm up acts I am on an all-time high as I eagerly await All Time Low to take to the stage. And when those stage lights dim the crowd’s screams go up, and out walk the boys looking ready to get things started as they play three tracks back to back, Weightlessness, Somewhere in Neverland and Cinderblock Garden. One of my fav tracks has always been Weightlessness and it is such a fitting opening track as I feel my feet become lifted like I am floating above the ground. It turns out I was just being swept up into the mosh as a surge came from the back to the front, kids eager to express their love for these Baltimore pop punks.
There is no denying Australia’s love for All Time Low, with them consistently having sold out shows whenever they tour. It comes as no great shock to us, but to them they are in awe of how big the crowd is tonight and are really feeling the love in the room. So they thank us for our support, and tell us the next track they will play has sold more copies in our great land than anywhere else in the world, Life of the Party. It is an instant fan favourite as we begin clapping, singing and dancing along.
Not only known for their music playing ability, an All Time Low show comes equipped with witty band banter and according to them the most handsome drummer of any band ever. The bras thrown on stage are draped over guitarist Jack Barakat’s microphone stand and at one point in the set a fan made it up on stage and clang to him like a Koala, he would later apologize for the smell. It is seeing this sort of passion on stage and in the pit that make you see just how special this band are to their fans. So when the stage light fades and the spotlight falls onto frontman Alex Gaskarth alone with his acoustic, and he plays for us Therapy, the cell phones come out and light up the whole Hordern. His lyrics just reach inside all of us and bring out our inner voice as we all sing along. After this touching sweet live music moment, he takes the time to welcome any new fans alongside the old ones and says, ‘you are family, you are here, and you are loved‘. With this sentiment, he alone starts to play Misery for us. By the songs second verse, the lights come back on and the drum beat kicks in and they are all back out to help make us one big loving family.
The main set would end with Take Cover. However, by the end of tonight it was the encore that would steal the spotlight and just become the perfect way to cap off the night. Jasey Rae was sensational to hear, plus another cover in Journey’s Don’t Stop Believing, which guitarist Jack was forced to do some improvisation whilst fully admitting he only really knows up to the guitar solo. It didn’t matter because we loved it any way, perhaps not as much as we loved the cover we got earlier in the main set, Lorde’s Green Light. It was shows end and dear reader you can count me in as things closed with our hands held high, clapping in time to Dear Maria Count Me In, Confetti would shower us in red and white pieces and the smoke machines would bellow out all they had left in them as we would let out all we had left in us.
Wow! This was more than just my awesome weekend, this just could be the gig of the year. So, if you’re wasting time thinking of getting tickets, stop, or live the regret of not seeing one of the finest triple-head pop punk extravaganza’s our country will have all year. Get out of the house and get to a live music show and catch All Time Low playing their biggest ever Australian shows to date with Neck Deep and The Maine as supports. Need I write more? Why are you still here reading this? Go on get out of here.
Review – Chad
Photo Gallery – Christian Ross