The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world


With Hailmary, Mantl, Bad Shannon
Rocket Room, Perth
Friday 3rd August, 2012


By Shane Pinnegar

Some nights, you just HAD to be there – even if not everyone else was.


You know how it is. A band is road-hardened and energetic, and determined to deliver the best goddamn show they can, no matter whether there are 5 or 500 people in the joint. EMPRA were that band tonight, and didn’t give a rat’s arse that The Rocket Room was only edging towards half full – they delivered in spades, ensuring that everyone who was present went away knowing they’d seen something special.



For appetisers Bad Shannon and Mantl played solid sets that showed a lot of promise with some catchy hard rocking tunes. We’ll have to make sure we catch both of these bands again soon… and it’s always a pleasure to hear DJ Perry’s eclectic journey through his hard, heavy and twisted music collection.


EMPRA are at the tail end of a 24 date Australian tour, and 9 weeks playing 3 gigs a weekend have paid off – the songs from their debut album are raucous and hook-laden, energetic and bouncy and delivered with charisma, oomph and such a joie de vivre that there is little doubt they will go on to bigger and better things quickly.




Opening with Like A Runaway, the band had the crowd on side from the get-go. An irresistible number that perfectly blends the band’s hard rock-meets-pop punk modus operandi. Through Hand Me A Livewire, Charity Song and Foster The People cover Pumped Up Kicks, Sanny & the three Matts never let up for a moment. The frontman is a force of nature – all teeth and curls as he runs through the crowd, jumps around on stage and delivers hook after hook and riff after riff.


By set closer I Won’t Give Up, the 4 guys on stage are drenched in sweat and the dancing, headbanging, screaming crowd are exhausted. Job done!



HAILMARY had a helluva job following a set like this, but they showed all the class and talent they are reknowned for, with an impressive 40 minutes of hard rockers spiked with a sinister Alice In Chains edge. The Empra boys shook hands, signed CDs and posed for photos through the crowd as Kevin Curran & Co belted out favourites and newies from their forthcoming album, including a couple of great turns in Bringing Out The Best and climactic closer Good To Go.



An epic night that proves yet again that you can’t beat a live gig for the time of your life.


Empra Setlist:-
Like A Runaway
Hand Me A Livewire
Charity Song
Pumped Up Kicks (Foster The People cover)
Only Love
Doesn’t Make Much Sense
I Won’t Give Up


Hailmary Setlist:-
You Ain’t The Man
Yesterday’s Friend
Live It And Breathe
Self (Destructive) Made Man
She's So Heavy (Beatles Interlude)
Bringing Out The Best
Wake Up
Drag In Drag Out
Yellow Light Of Death
Good To Go



Review posted 05 August 2012