Australian pop-punk fans it is time to rejoice as for Say Anything’s In Defense Anniversary Tour has
landed on our shores and tonight down at the Factory Theatre Sydney, it is the first night of a two-night set. Tonight’s set will see the band perform … Is A Real Boy and In Defense Of The Genre Disc 1.

In a recent review I wrote for a We The Kings show in Sydney I said, ‘look forward to seeing more of these guys throughout the year’ about a local Sydney band called Yours Truly and lord behold here I am tonight seeing them again as the only support band for tonight’s show. Once again lead singer Mikaila wowed us with her powerhouse vocals evident on crowd pleaser When the Sky Falls, guitarists Teddie and Lachlan let things rip and kept up crowd interaction before they ended the set with awesome new single High Hopes. These guys are so on their way so make sure you keep turning up to catch them as they keep popping up and playing shows.

In Defense of the Genre is quite literally a genre-defining album and there was no doubt in my mind Say Anything was going to play this album show by the book, from track one to track thirteen all tracks specifically from disc 1 it’s just the sort of band they are and from the moment they step on stage they open things up with Skinny Mean Man. One thing this album is well known for is the number of guest vocalists it features, and whilst it was just the band on stage tonight we the crowd became the guest vocalist as we filled in for every part on every song the entire set. It was just one big sing-along, tracks like Shiksa (Girlfriend) and Baby I’m A Blur being the biggest highlights. The crowd was having so much fun and you could see this led the band into having fun too, frontman Max Bemis made us laugh between songs and musically Parker Case gave us the somewhat sonic twists and sounds that this album features. For an album that Max admitted was written in parts when things weren’t going great for him, when played live tonight was nothing but fun and filled the room with love.

Right about now is when disc 2 would kick in on my cd player at home but not tonight, the band take a short break emerge back out and kick things off with Belt and just like before they play Is a Real Boy from start to finish. The energy in the room seems bigger than before, more lifted, the crowd even more vocal, shit I even saw crowd surfers going over the barrier. Album shows always give a moment for us to hear songs live we might not normally get to hear at a show, and I really hope they play well tonight, that moment for me came with Retarded in Love. During this set, guitarist Kenny Bridges from Moneen amped things up as he let rip covers of Nirvana. Played from the front barrier and the mosh pit and then as the set ended on the albums last track, Admit It, he stays back and shreds things up before he mounts the drum kit and while seated on it he puts down a beat while still playing the guitar aided by Parker. This duo gives us a cover of Rage Against Machine’s Bulls on Parade followed by Green Days’ Basket Case which is sung by a random audience member pulled up on the stage Wow, what a set I thought to myself.

We chant for one more song and refuse to leave but eventually the house lights are flicked on and it is time to I go. I for one and not disappointed as for before departing the stage Max told the room this is the most fun he has ever had in Australia. I know it certainly was the most fun Say Anything show I had ever been to. The band are working on a new album and say they will be back but before then you should go out and catch tonight’s show if you’re in Sydney or Fridays and Saturdays if you’re in Brisbane.

Review – Chad

Photo Gallery – Christian Ross 

Read our pre-tour interview with frontman Max Bemis 

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