A Monday night in the middle of Adelaide’s Mad March could have been a disaster for a lesser acts, but with Millencolin and Goldfinger presenting a salacious double bill the punks were out in force. The new HQ is quickly becoming the venue of choice for touring punk acts, it’s a pity it was designed as a nightclub more so than a gig venue, but its in a great location and right in the middle of the Hindley action.
Opening the show was local punk outfit the Lizards, who were, as always, brilliant!! They have a strong local following and were received very well from the growing crowd. One headbanger in particular especially enjoyed them, much to the bemusement of those around him. Someone should have told him Slayer are playing next week!!
Next up were the legendary Goldfinger, who much to my surprise and delight included Chris Cheney and Mike Herrera in their line-up, unfortunately no Trav Barker, but that was expected. I later discovered that Mike has been with the band for a couple years now, but Cheney on guitar was a one-off occasion as schedules aligned following The Living End’s Adelaide 500 performance.
The boys hit the stage and launched into Spokesman, which has well received, but didn’t garner too big a crowd reaction. John Feldmann then grabbed the show by the balls, demanded the crowd lose their shit “I flew 27 hours to play some punk rock” and then preceded to put on one of the best front man performances I’ve ever seen, he turned the gig on its head and lit the place up!! And did the crowd respond? Oh shit yeah!! A Million Miles, Get Up, Here in Your Bedroom and Put the Knife Away had the whole place jumping and the floor spinning in a violent circle pit. John was in the crowd, crowd surfing, getting punters on and off stage, ad libbing a song about HQ and the surrounding strip joints and shisha bars it was brilliant. Finishing the set with Superman and their cover of 99 Red Balloons had the crowd pumping and not just warded up, but white hot ready for Millencolin.
Following Goldfinger, Millencolin had to bring their A game, and they did! Touring on the back of their new album SOS, the boys opened with the title track, which was surprisingly well known by the clearly “old school” crowd, but the clock was quickly wound back as they followed with Penguins and Polarbears which really got the place moving. New albums are great, but it’s a fine line touring them and finding the balance between playing old and new, Eric joking with the crowd “Do you want us to play a new one? Bad luck we are anyway”.
They knew the drill and walked the line perfectly. Fox, Twenty Two and Olympic in quick succession had the pit gasping for air, with respite coming in the form of Nikola grabbing an acoustic guitar for the emotion fuelled sing along The Ballad. I love Millencolin’s crowd interactions, there is something about their Swedish accent that has an innocent arrogance about it, perhaps it’s not that innocent… I’ve seen Millencolin many times over the years and they were as sharp tonight as I’ve ever seen them. Perhaps the only disappointment was the sound, you could barely hear the guitar, but I’m going to blame the venue for that!! Lozin Must was a rare treat, before the set was finished with one of my all-time favourites My Clean.
True to form, the boys returned to the stage to fire a great encore including Bullion, Duckpond, Ray and night was finished with No Cigar… or was it? The crowds deafening chant was enough to get the boys back on the stage for “one more song” and the second encore was just that, Black Eye closed the show.
The crowd was left in a sweaty but satisfied mess, a bit like what was happening at the venue next door.
Live Review By Tim Nicholas