| Article By Benny Ball on Jun 11, 2004 |
An impressive turnout of over 100 dark bodies ensured local favourites Inside the Exterior felt welcome when they opened the night with their edgy brand of metal. It’s this design of powerful hard rock and gutteral noise that has garnered them support slots for fellow Canberrans Random and Yeti. Given to whirlwind screams and doom growls, singer/guitarist Toddy gave an appreciative ANU audience a pretty clear indication of what Inside The Exterior are all about – violent fucking metal.
Lagosta entered the diminutive ANU stage with an identical air of confidence. Thankfully, competent playing and a well rounded sound is what gave the four piece first-place tonight. Playing material from their 2002 debut EP and from a catalogue of older songs, I waited in anticipation for the hooks that never came. Undeniably, Lagosta have an emotionally charged and at times captivating hard rock sound, but it never seems to get off the ground and reach higher orbit. I found myself straying from my usual tact of writing off bands like Lagosta as ‘samey’ or unremarkable. “Where has the devouring cynic gone?” I asked myself. Why am I still bopping my head and tapping my foot?
I guess the answer is that sometimes, you don’t want to think too hard about the music your hearing. Lagosta’s set proved that occasionally it is a band’s ‘feel’ that propels them into welcome territory. I couldn’t even pigeonhole them. For a reviewer - that HURTS.
With my tail between my legs I ruled Lagosta champions of the evening. Just don’t expect to see them at the top of the charts anytime soon.
The Mighty Few just didn’t seem up to the task of headlining tonight’s show. ‘Tired’ is the word that springs to mind. Maybe it was the insane cold, or the drive down that did them in, but it just wasn’t their night. Starting their set late didn’t help their cause, as most of the crowd had thought better of getting pneumonia, and gone home to warm, snuggly beds. Not this reviewer! Through the thick and thin of the Cinema EP and 1999’s Self Titled EP material, I stuck it out.
Giving a fairly blunt set didn’t detract from what was a fairly pleasant array of tunes. Technical difficulties involving the bass player really slowed things down beyond bearable limits. More music you don’t have to think about, which was good, because I was too busy thinking about how I was going to defrost my ice-encrusted digits.
Comfortable tunes, a warm-shared vibe by all in attendance and spotless behaviour (the odd drunken loony dancer doesn’t count) gave much to marking the evening as ‘good times’. And after all, that’s what live music is supposed to be.