Live Review: Pennywise, Anti-Flag, Local Resident Failure

12 October 2015 | 4:34 pm | Will Oakeshott

"The party spirit was well and truly alive."

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Punk-loving beer enthusiasts from more of an adult age group (not necessarily reflected in their behaviour, however) flocked to HQ to fulfil their need for the soundtrack of '90s skate and surf culture. 

It was a pleasant surprise to see Newcastle's Local Resident Failure take to the slightly more narrow stage as it was not particularly well advertised they had earned this distinct support slot honour. Having been absent from Adelaide for over four years, the quartet had a challenge set before them to leave a lasting impression on the unsuspecting audience. There is certainly no doubting they gave it a red hot go, as an extensive set of short, sharp and clangy punk tunes echoed around the complex. Songs like the ska influenced but frenzied Fuck White Pride, Playing The Race Card, the love song Around The WorldOld Skool and closer Where The Bloody Hell Are Ya? were very noteworthy songs which introduced the four-piece — and indeed the night — rather exquisitely. While chaos didn't ensue during their performance, their impact was certainly felt; no doubt a few converted fans will be at their next show if they get back to Adelaide sooner rather than later.

Pennsylvania's Anti-Flag took the opener's political edge, doused it in acidic vinegar and injected it into a very willing crowd all within opening track The Press Corpse. The game was on and it was time to make a stand — or more accurately, jump like maniacs. Turncoat boosted the venomous rampage with a shouted chorus; Fabled World, All Of The Poison, All Of The Pain (which truth be told should have been recorded for a live album), 1 Trillion Dollar$, Should I Stay Or Should I Go (yes, a very apt cover of The Clash) and Brandenburg Gate all provoked stage dives and crowd surfs; but in turn it was all a lead up for the pinnacle of the performance. Die For Your Government created hysteria, drummer Pat Thetic, his kit, and bassist Chris Head (on top of the kit), all ending up in the crowd. This was going to be hard to beat.

In 1995, 12 short punk songs were to change the lives of five Californian struggling musicians forever. Pennywise's seminal third album About Time has been a staple record for the era and celebrated its 20th anniversary this year, and on this night the band played it in full to celebrate. Hits Peaceful Day, Same Old Story, Perfect People and Every Single Day are timeless punk tunes which are celebrated globally and deservedly so. The party spirit was well and truly alive, especially with mentions of beers and a showing of adoration for the excellent beverage.

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A cover of Bad Religion's Do What You Want was an excellent addition after About Time concluded, and Society boasted a singalong that vocalist Jim Lindberg orchestrated — he probably didn't have to sing a single word, though. Fuck Authority and Land Down Under (Men At Work cover) were thankfully obligatory, but it was closer Bro Hymn Tribute which incited the riot. They had to restart the song to a degree, due to a punter resisting security after climbing onto the stage and consequentially suffering an injury in unfortunate circumstances. However, that didn't detract from what the song was about — a tribute to late original bass player Jason Thirsk — which was everlasting and perfect. One of the only punk anthems which can create excitement, sorrow and triumph all in mere minutes, it was the only way to finish a Pennywise show.

So will Full Circle receive the same treatment in 2017?