Live Review: Hellions, Endless Heights, The Brave, Introvert

17 May 2017 | 12:51 pm | Carley Hall

"... By the time flagship single 'Quality Of Life' rolls around to round things out there's not a dry T-shirt to be had among the happy albeit sweaty punters."

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Being the drawcard venue for the area's heavy folk, things sure do get loose at Minimum Wage Club, more commonly and affectionately known as Miami's Shark Bar. There's always been a quiet appreciation for hardcore on the Gold Coast, a neat juxtaposition pitting the glitter strip against those that don't quite scrub up in the same slick way. The floor isn't thick with them yet but the early arrivals are already generating a buzz.

Newcastle's Introvert are obviously stoked to have found themselves in tonight's company, but the hard-working four-piece have earned it. Major tours and their arrhythmic heavy garage rock have tickled the right spots, with singles like Is It Too Late sending drummer Stephen Hopkins' mop flying and the poor goldfish on show behind the bar wondering how they got themselves stuck in this situation.

When Brisbane's The Brave amble on up there's a few more bodies ready to go skyward. Shredding guitars and Nathan Toussaint's brutal vocal help the metalcore five-piece whip up some circle-work down the front where bodies are starting to get thrown into the air and passed around by sweaty hands. Set closer Searchlights has a messy mix but the soaring distorted guitar lines peek through.

Things are a tad damp by the time Sydney quintet Endless Heights front the bedraggled crowd. Singer Joel Martorana lures everyone forward only to wallop them with some distorted guitars and steady rock in Mosaic. He's a shouty vocalist, though, and it's not long before the sounds of fatigue can be heard and things get a bit pitchy. But the physical antics show no signs of slowing down as some champ gets up in Martorana's grill during Drain.

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It's been a busy 12 months for Sydney's Hellions. The five melodic hardcore fiends struck gold with Opera Oblivia last year, giving long-term fans their piece de resistance and new listeners an assuring welcome. It's fleshed out their live persona, too. Despite the humble setting of the Miami venue, the boys greet the swollen crowd with a dramatic grand entrance in darkness surrounded by atmospheric noise. They kick off with their first track and even though the thrashy mix smothers a lot of the neat guitar work, it's a hit in the crowd's eyes. Bad Way, played fast and tight, 24's singalong chorus and feel-good Thresher are all standouts, but the intricacies of Lotus Eater and He Without Sin are lost in the mix once again. It's an issue tonight, but by the time flagship single Quality Of Life rolls around to round things out there's not a dry T-shirt to be had among the happy albeit sweaty punters.