Live Review: The Dillinger Escape Plan, Closure In Moscow

23 October 2017 | 1:01 pm | Brendan Crabb

"A celebration, not a wake."

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Perhaps the square peg in the show's round hole - the nonplussed facial expressions of some punters reinforced this sentiment - Closure In Moscow's funk-laced, off-kilter progressive rock nonetheless garnered a respectable response from the growing gathering. The Melburnians were taut, applied themselves to the task and clearly wanted to be there, but the whole affair didn't quite connect, feeling stylistically unfocused at times.

The Dillinger Escape Plan's final Sydney show was a celebration, not a wake. A symbiotic union between band and fans of sheer energy and vigour, not a cynical last pay-day. This reviewer has been attending the quintet's shows for more than a decade, and the time signature-bending metal/hardcore crew remain a potent force. Perhaps recent tours have been marginally more subdued, sans some of the antics that have wowed both the faithful and uninitiated. However, in this instance that's a relative prospect for a band whose frantic live reputation precedes them.

Being their victory lap (aka final tour) and a sold-out occasion, this time around the intensity stakes had raised; led by Ben Weinman's manic riffage and boosted considerably by the brilliant Billy Rymer/Liam Wilson rhythm section. Crowdsurfers ensured security staff earned their pay while band members flailed limbs and instruments, ventured into the audience (frontman Greg Puciato leaping from the upper-level balcony to the floor) and hurled road cases and cymbals into the crowd at set's conclusion. Devotees revelled in it all; from explosive Panasonic Youth and Sugar Coated Sour to even the croon-a-long pop hooks of infectious Black Bubblegum, a track that divided the Americans' following its release.

The one-two encore parting shot of Sandbox Magician and 43% Burnt sent all and sundry home sweaty, with voices strained and sporting grins you'd have needed a sand-blaster to remove. Farewell The Dillinger Escape Plan - it's been real.

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