Appearing in support of bands like 生 Conform 死, Thornhill, Alpha Wolf, and Polaris, Melbourne’s favourite conceptual metalcore band finally got to host their own party. In celebration of the recent release of “Villain”, The Gloom In The Corner drew fans to Stay Gold last night to throw down in the name of The Devil Of The Sect and The Queen Of Misanthropy. [Confused? More on that story HERE]
First up on stage were newcomers Starve, with this set their apparent first show. There were no awkward newbie vibes here at all, with hectic forces coming at us from the outset. Before I could fully come to grips with all that was happening, a wild Mikey Arthur appeared on stage to vocally feature on a track.
There was something really punishing and relentless with Starve, with a set carved out by punchy blink-and-you’ll-miss-it rapidfire songs, deep growls, irregular rhythms, and decelerations that seemed purpose built for intense moshing. A really strong stage presence and gripping pieces of music held interest of all of us present. For a first show, Starve were really great at directing focus and drawing us into their breakdowns, and the fierceness kept rolling out with two-steppable forces. Finishing their set with their debut single “Doomsayer”, Starve crafted plunging heaviness with unique rhythms and blast beats. Finishing with a bark was icing on this ridiculously good ‘cake’ courtesy of this band that seem like one to watch.
Parkwood came to my awareness with their Close To Home EP earlier in the year and it was a pleasure to get to see them live again. The Melbourne band seemed almost apologetic for their melodic hardcore selves in having to follow the impressively heavy beast that was Starve. “Lose Yourself” was their opener, and they fittingly lost themselves in the multilayered experience; visibly having a good time of it. Regardless of how much they raved about Starve, it was a pleasure to fall into ‘Parkwood land’ with great vocals on all fronts, tight rhythms, and hooking riffs. It was a lot of fun for such angsty music, enhanced by some grooving dance moves from vocalist Alec Wilson.
I spent a lot of time fixated by Sam Bianco’s efforts on vocals, and how those stunning cleans worked exceptionally well on their own or in tandem with Alec’s, and alongside atmospheric guitar. In my notes, I wrote “Goddamn unreal – blast beats plus this soaring and gritty expression – stunning.”
Playing “Hold”, I noticed the impressive way Parkwood manage to paint a really great tense and heavy ultimatum vibe. This (exceptionally underrated) band also pulled out a new track (coming soon 👀), featuring spoken word over dreamy and contemplative soundscape. They closed with the beautiful “Goodbye” which hurt my heart a little but was a perfect expansive ending for the set, blowing out into sweet severity.
Mirrors have been busy behind the scenes working on new music, as well as recently supporting Ocean Sleeper on tour. It was great to get to catch them on their last show of the year, implying that 2019 would see them no longer playing some songs from Fools Paradise EP. “Bring Me Home” opened the set with high energy, setting a strong tone to Mirrors’ metalcore precision and mammoth choruses. Their most recently released single “Circus” kept the high vibes going, with vocalist Patty Goodman bellowing out into oblivion, and drummer Rob Brens impressively setting the mood. Speaking of which, the drumming was a definite stand-out feature of this set for me.
Blending punishing breakdowns with thoughtful atmospheric moments, Mirrors created opportunities to either mosh or get lost in their music. It was a pleasure to watch bassist Jake Mackin do the latter, and also soak up Tyson Taifer’s intricate riffs rippling out under relentless savagery. Mirrors shared a new track too – one to look out for in 2019! It was punchy and punishing with impressive screams and a soaring chorus. Old favourites “F.Y.A.” and “Tie The Lace” wrapped up Mirrors’ set, with singalongs going down easily along with a respectable mosh.
It was then time for The Gloom In The Corner, who immediately set a tone of mystique and anticipation with a ticking clock/pulsing piano introduction. Ripping out “Rodent” and “Brother”, it was savage and hectic energy from the Melbourne band, with also a bit of ‘kid on Christmas’ excitement courtesy of grinning frontman Mikey Arthur; fierce and heavy, but also well and truly feeling like a party.
It was rowdy as fuck, both on stage and in the Stay Gold band room, with beats striking aggressively and smotheringly at times. An absolute treat, “War” came via a gritty and grungy rendition. It was hectic as hell and not at all pretty – with no complaints from fans of Homecoming. Guitarist Martin Wood joined vocal forces with Mikey, as did the audience, joining in with fingers passionately pointed in this PTSD-related epic. I was instantly hoarse.
It feels like words are too limited to capture the experience of this set. It was the Gloom show and we were all here for it, sweaty and high vibing. A new track to add to the unfolding story (“Survivor’s Guilt”?) brought punishing savagery to the two-step party, along with aching downstepping guitar and climbing anguish. Starve’s vocalist joined in on the lowwww lows and the blast beats joined in. Good fucking lord it was layer upon layer of fierceness.
The full and hype heavy set included the wall-to-wall hecticness of “Paramour”, the fiery insanity of “Witch Hunt”, and of course a tight performance of “Villain”. There was a lot of love in the room, and a buzz of excitement about future Gloom and more to come in the story. On this note, Mikey removed the shirt he was wearing to reveal another underneath that was emblazoned with text. I was at the rear of the venue at this point and couldn’t make out the text on it, so I sought some information from Mikey himself about the reveal, discovering that it was of key importance in The Gloom In The Corner story!
The text on the front: “My name is Sherlock Bones”
The text on the back: “Remember my name; the true killer of Rachel Barker”, and has a photo cap of Sherlock from the “Villain” music video with his alternate names lightly printed over the top “The Devil of the Sect Hellhound for the Devil’s Throne The Fist of Doom””
In Mikey’s words: “The shirt change was the name reveal of The Devil of the Sect. The back states that he was actually the one who killed Jay’s girlfriend in Fear Me, meaning that Jay (without his knowledge) was assisted by the very person he had his vendetta against in the first record. It’s always been stated that there were multiple people involved in Rachel’s death, and that the credit for the murder went to someone else (the person killed in Oxymoron). However, the shirt reveal was to indicate this isn’t the case.”
Leaving the stage, it was pretty cool for the guys to have an encore draw them back onto the stage. They looked to their earlier music and played “Heaven’s Collapse” and “Jay” from Fear Me. This felt like ‘bonus Gloom’ time and it was going down an absolute treat, with Stay Gold feeling hot and savage and brutal, but on a massive high too. If I were The Gloom In The Corner, I’d be pretty happy with this first headline show! See you next year, TGITC!
[Photos courtesy of Liam Davidson]