The hardcore and metal scene has to be one of the most dedicated group of people in the world, people showing up on a school night is great commitment to live music, overhearing in the line up outside “I just come from work straight down” or even the band commenting on how they are playing tonight then going home to get up and go to work, it just shows that we all do what we do for the love of the music and scene.

Starting off this intimate night are Melbourne’s RUN, a heavy hardcore act that came out swinging from the get-go even though there were minimal people at the very start. I feel like dedication and heart is the theme for tonight, for these guys, they had a banner playing behind them of a brain scan, this was in fact an actual scan of the singer’s brain from a couple of years ago after being diagnosed with brain cancer. It was a touching story that gives light into the reasons he does what he does. Back story aside, these guys played their hearts out with one of the guitarists first shows with the band, you wouldn’t have been able to tell, showing off their tight riffs and melodies giving their drummer plenty of room to be a highlight of their set with some unreal drum fills and great energy.

Following up was Primitive, an up-and-coming metal band with the style like Machine Head or Chimaira, heavy and melodic, great twin lead work and solid precision! Yet again with a slow filling room, these guys came out and played like it was a full house, getting people to move in closer and enjoy the show. Primitive played the stage like they owned it and the front man getting down to fist bump crowd in between riffs is a humbling sight, it’s always a good idea to interact with the people who show up and support. The band looked like they had a blast playing off each other’s energies and even from the middle of the venue you could see that the drummer had a massive grin on his face loving every moment.

Finishing up the local supports are The Ascended, bringing in their brand of melodic death influenced syncopated riffage. These guys make great use of their 3 completely different vocal styles with a clean and a more typical death growl style as opposed to the metalcore scream of the other supports. Following along in the melodic sense of the night, The Ascended show off their musical prowess with some unreal leadwork and big sounding choruses with some of the crowd singing along, they’ve got some killer songs. The thing about metalheads is that they are pretty damn humble, “Thank you for coming out and spending your Thursday night with us, we appreciate it!”. They appreciate the chance to support and play live, all bands playing tonight have shown that being humble is also apart of the scene lifestyle, we appreciate the chances we have to play live music once again and have international bands back.

All of these bands have shown aspects of a Darkest Hour influence or at least the scene they represent. Its unreal to see how bands influence a play style throughout generations. 10 years since Darkest Hour have been to Australia, and while their fanbase maybe smaller tonight they make up for in energy and heart for seeing these guys do what they do! From the beginning of the intro music to the final chords the crowds energy is relentless and feeding the band, showing it’s always worth while and amazing to be apart of the live music scene.

Darkest Hour come out showing why they are still doing what they do twenty odd years later, with incredible energy and clearly enjoying how excited the crowd are. The guitarists are fantastic to watch as they bounce of each other’s melodies and solos and I couldn’t help but notice the drummer having an ambidextrous looking set up of his drum kit, it was nearly identical for each hand, watching how he played was unreal. Playing songs that cover their career, the singer stops about midway to ask if anyone was at their tour 10 years ago to a fair few of the crowd responding and then asking if anyone’s got their first record, a couple of people go berserk and the singer is just stoked that there are people here that have been listening for so long “This song is for you few”. 

I love seeing these types of shows, the bands that have only been here once or twice and finding that there are still fans around the world that get into their music and from seeing the age difference in this crowd, its covered a generation of Hardcore/Metal fans! That’s incredible. What is also incredible to see and hear is how bands unconsciously help shape a sound and in the Metalcore world, Darkest Hour would have to be one of them! If they come back on the next album cycle, get out and catch these guys!