One thing you can count on in Melbourne is that no matter what the weather is like, or what day of the week it is, they will always show up for a live gig. Last night was no exception when Canadian hardcore punk heavyweights Silverstein tore the house down at 170 Russell. They brought along with them fellow Canadian hardcore band Comeback Kid, and two of Melbourne’s up and coming post-hardcore outfits Belle Haven and Earth Caller.

First to take the stage was Earth Caller, who, despite there only being a small crowd put on a performance full of energy and enthusiasm. Vocalist and Birthday Boy Josh Collard was joined on stage by guitarist and backing vocalist Zac Noble, guitarist Justin Murphy bassist and backing vocalist Harley Hadden and drummer Joel Diver. There were influences and notes of nu-metal during the bands set and they received mixed reactions from the crowd. Some people were extremely into the band, whilst others not so much. Despite suffering from some technical difficulties, Earth Caller did a good job of warming up the crowd.

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With a crowd that was a little bigger than the one for Earth Caller, the boys of Belle Haven were high energy and octane right from the off. With vocalist David De La Hoz, guitarists Christopher Vernon and Daniel ‘Mara’ Marinakis, bassist Tom Mitchell and drummer Jake Zammit. There were definitely a few Belle Haven fans in the crowd and they were more than happy to sing along with Hoz and give back what they were getting from him in terms of energy and passion. There were hints of Parkway Drive, Asking Alexandria and Pierce The Veil in Belle Haven’s sound, and they are definitely one that you’re going to want to keep your eyes on. They made performing looking completely effortless and put absolutely everything into their set.

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Next, was Comeback Kid, who’s name is fitting considering they dropped their debut album back in 2003! These hardcore legends have been around for 15 years and with the performance they put on last night it is not very hard to see why. The current line-up of the band is Andrew Neufeld a.k.a. GOOSE, Jeremy Hiebert, Stu Ross a.k.a. TOAD, Ron Friesen and Jesse Labovitz. It was at this point that the crowd started to get really rowdy and GOOSE was more than happy to encourage crowd surfing, circle pits and moshing. Whilst there were a few times when the band stopped to talk and interact with the crowd, they spent most of their stage time putting on an absolutely killer performance. They were even joined on stage by Josh of Earth Caller for one song to celebrate his birthday! By the end of the set, there was not a silent member of the crowd, nor was there a still one as we all knew that the headliners were about to hit the stage.

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It was now for headliners, Canadian post-hardcore punk legends Silverstein. On April 30th Silverstein celebrated their 18th year together as a band with only 2 line-up changes since 2000. Currently Silverstein are vocalist Shane Told, guitarists Paul Marc Rousseau, bassist Billy Hamilton and drummer Paul Koehler. The band released their ninth studio album ‘Dead Reflections’ in July of last year and included several songs off the album in their setlist. Well known for the diversity of their sound, Silverstein also played songs from their impressive back catalogue. With an efficiently and acceptably hyped and warmed up crowd, it only took a few songs before there were crowdsurfers who Told was more than happy to encourage and high five as they were lifted over by security,

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Though the crowd was rowdy, lively and loud, when the acoustic guitar was pulled out you could have heard a pin drop in the packed venue. We were first treated to Arrivals, performed solo and acoustic by Rousseau, and then to My Heroine performed solo and acoustic to start off with by Told who was re-joined on stage by the rest of the band to finish it up. The crowd were still loudly singing along and there were even a few tears shed by the some of the crowd during My Heroine. What followed were another three high energy performances before the band left the stage, before there was an overwhelming chanting for ‘one more song’ and Silverstein returned to finish out their set with two more songs, Discovering The Waterfront and The Afterglow.

Despite it being a mid-week show, there was still an incredible turnout of dedicated and hardcore fans last night that made the night what it was. All four bands put on incredible performances full of passion and energy and even though it’s barely over, I personally cannot wait for Silverstein to return!

Setlist:

  1. Ghost
  2. Bleeds No More
  3. Massachusetts
  4. Whiplash
  5. Lost Positives
  6. Smashed into Pieces
  7. Smile in Your Sleep
  8. Sound of the Sun
  9. Sacrifice
  10. Arrivals
  11. My Heroine (Acoustic)
  12. Retrograde
  13. A Midwestern State of Emergency
  14. Broken Stars

Encore:

  1. Discovering the Waterfront
  2. The Afterglow

You can get your tickets to see Silverstein on their Australian tour HERE!

Photography by Matt Holliday, view more of his work HERE.