Melbourne was showcasing some beer drinking weather as this interviewer made his way to The Forum; coming in at a nice 27 degrees, it meant that those in the pit at the SOLD OUT Pennywise show were in for a sweatfest!
Doors opened just after 7:30 and those who came down early were treated to Pagan, who put on a high energy and frantic set. The four-piece blew their way through seven songs, which showcased the ferocious scream that their female vocalist contained in her small frame! The rest of the band absolutely shredded their instruments as they most definitely got those in attendance prepared for the high energy that was yet to come.
Coming off their own headline show the night before, The Bronx only made fans wait twenty minutes before gracing the stage. From the get go, The Bronx was getting the pit moving; during the second song of the set, front man Matt Caughthran jumped down into the mosh and joined the pit whilst singing. This was the first of multiple occasions that Caughthran joined the most appreciative Melbourne crowd, which only got the pit more frantic as bodies were flying and the sway in insane. Security were kept on their toes throughout the set, as they were also having to deal with people trying to get up on stage and stage dive; this reviewer was dislodged from the rail by a stage-diver who completely caught him off guard! Pennywise most definitely had to come out with their A-Game to even match the furious stage show and energy that The Bronx put on during their hour long, seventeen song set.
The sold-out crowd of 2,000 people had most definitely already received their monies worth, even before the headline act graced the stage; Pennywise came out and not only made sure those in attendance got the most bang for their buck, but that those in the mosh were going to be feeling quite sore over the weekend! The energy was high from the opening note as Jim Lindburg, Fletcher Dragge, Randy Bradbury and Byron McMackin graced the stage and got the show started with ‘Fight Till You Die’; the Melbourne crowd were sent into a frenzy which remained constant throughout the rest of the night. ‘Date With Destiny’ and ‘Get A Life’ came and went in a blur of flying bodies and security earning their money tonight. Even though ‘Society’ was written 20 years ago, unfortunately it Is still a good representation of the current state of affairs in the USA, so Pennywise showed the same passion as when they recorded it!
‘Final Day’, ‘Broken’ and ‘Running Out Of Time’ sounded as clean and crisp as when they were recorded; you could really see the time and dedication that Pennywise have placed into re-learning this album for the tour. ‘Every Time’, ‘Nowhere Fast’, ‘What If I’ and ‘Go Away’ showcased that the end of Full Circle was fast approaching, as there was only two songs yet to come; ‘Did You Really’ and ‘Bro Hymn’. After ‘Did You Really’ Lindburg announced that they were going to be saving ‘Bro Hymn’ until the end of the set, which meant that the 20th Anniversary of Full Circle portion of the set had drawn to a close. Pennywise took this time to play a couple of cover songs and let their hair down; the first cover was of Circle Jerk’s ‘Wild In The Streets’, which was followed by Black Flag’s ‘Gimme Gimme Gimme’.
‘Pennywise’ and ‘Same Old Story’ were the last two songs that Pennywise bought out of their back catalogue, before inciting a 2000 strong vocal singalong of Ben E. King’s ‘Stand By Me’; before launching into their cover of Men At Work’s ‘Land Down Under’, Lindburg made a comment about how Frenzal Rhomb always give them a hard time for performing it, but “we love to play it so let’s go!”.
The long waited for ‘Bro Hymn’ rounded out the set; not only were Pennywise joined on stage by their family, they were also swamped by adoring fans as the entire Forum stage was full of people remembering long lost brother Jason Thirsk. The stage exploded from being empty to full so quickly that security had to get up on stage and prevent more people from getting up there. Those left in the crowd were subjected to more flying bodies and perfect harmonization as ‘Bro Hymn’ drew to a close, signalling for those in attendance to gingerly make their way outside to attend to their injuries!
CHECK OUT THE FULL PHOTO GALLERY BY VANESSA JARVIS BELOW:
Fight Till You Die
Date With Destiny
Get a Life
Running Out of Time
You’ll Never Make It
What If I
Did You Really
Wild In The Streets (Circle Jerks Cover)
Gimme Gimme Gimme (Black Flag Cover)
Same Old Story
Stand By Me (Ben E King Cover)
Land Down Under (Men At Work Cover)
Photos by Vanessa Jarvis.