‘Carnage’: the word frontman, Mike Duce used to describe Lower Than Atlantis’s Wednesday night show at the Lemon Grove. It was a night of inflatable pizzas, copious crowd surfing and a serious amount of blood from Mosh Pit related injuries. It was a night to shake off those early week blues, and get over the hump day to be one step closer to the weekend.
The line up consisted of Australian band The Faim, the relatively local band Milk Teeth and of course, Lower Than Atlantis so the liveliness kicked-off from the very beginning. It was worth getting down early to catch The Faim relish in the fact that they were on their first tour ever, and had the energy to prove it. You wouldn’t have thought for a second that the quartet were new to the game: there was no sign of nervousness, and with no hint of inexperience, these Aussie boys came out and smashed it. They deserved to be in the lineup and are one of the best opening support acts I’ve seen. Rarely does a band show so much enthusiasm and remain vocally intact even with high kicks and raging stage jumping, as frontman Josh busted his lip open with the mic, paying no attention to the blood seeping from his lip. By the time they got to the end of their short set playing single “Saints of the Sinners”, the crowd were well and truly invested.
It was a night of inflatable pizzas, copious crowd surfing and a serious amount of blood
After The Faim’s ramped-up set I was surprised at the crowd’s lack of enthusiasm for the second support act of the evening, Milk Teeth, who have a sizeable following on Twitter and Instagram. Unfortunately, vocalist Becky called for a break last Friday to deal with some mental health issues, a brave decision supported by the rest of the band. Nonetheless, the boys rocked out and put on a cracking show even if the crowd didn’t appreciate it quite as much as they should have. Billy did his best to fill in the vocals and guitar tech Rhys was on the side to help the lads along but, drummer Oli Holbrook stole the show with his goofy facial expressions while he hammered away on the drums.
With the success of the supporting acts, I almost forgot about the main event, that was until they started their set off with Safe in Sound’s opener, “Had Enough” introducing an electric dynamic indicative of the rest of the night. Admittedly, at times it was hard not to notice Duce forgetting some of the lyrics and passing it off to the audience. Still, this tour was all about getting up close and personal with the fans and that it most certainly did, ensuring entertainment all throughout the evening. As the crowd raced round and began to form a pit, exposed to the hands of the audience, Duce played out the riffs of much beloved song, “Far Q” in the midst of it all, making it back up on stage just in time to belt out “FATHER YOU NEVER BOTHERED” and the pit resumed. One of the notable moments of the night was when Duce joined the fans on the floor, but this time to do a mellow acoustic version of “Another Sad Song”; no mic, no backing music just him and his guitar. Taking a break from the madness, there were three rules 1. Everyone was to remain silent, and 2. People were to crouch so others could see and, 3. Contrary to rule number one, if you knew the words you were encouraged to sing-along sing. With the lights up and Duce jokingly shouting “Shut Up Dicked” it almost seemed like you were watching your mate show you a couple of their songs in the living room.
the quality of vocals was sometimes sacrificed for fun
Once this finished, Duce re-joined the stage and chaos ensued. After asking the fans to crowd surf for the entire of “Love Someone Else” Duce shouts: “Everyone give it up for security” before saying “cause it’s only going to get worse…just kidding”. Later on, the famous inflatable pizza slice took centre stage, with a brief hesitation and extra assistance from the band, a daring fan got up on the slice and sailed their way through the crowd. This being quite a sight to behold, encouraged Duce to have a go at the end. At this moment, the lads rounded up their set with no other than “Here we go” a classic finisher, generally rated as one of the band’s best singles the from self-titled fourth album, Lower Than Atlantis. Overall, it was so much more than a night of music, although the quality of vocals and timing was sometimes sacrificed for fun; a treat for eclectic music listeners, and for those who, squashed at the very core of the pits, were in for a wild night.