The rock duo known simply as ’68 made the long trek to Australia this week for a run of shows as part of their tour in support of “Two Parts Viper” which was released last month. Adelaide was first on the hit list and our photographer Lindsay was on hand to witness the show.
It was all Adelaide rockers at the start with A Ghost Orchestra and melodic outfit Coves warming the evening up along with punk hardcore act Grenadiers who are touring alongside ’68 for the Australias run. Yet another reason why supporting the local music scene is important as it sets the tone for what’s to come.
’68 are a 2 piece rock outfit, Josh Scogin of Norma Jean and The Chariot fame and drummer Michael McClellan, who have a real energetic and sweaty live show. Or so we heard which we saw first hand for ourselves. Energetic only begins to describe the kind of show these two put on and what’s more, there’s a sense of intimacy that while experienced in any club show, is examplified even further here with the small amount of band members on stage. Regardless it was a fun fest filled with contrasting moments of real heaviness and sheer distorted guitars balanced out with mellower passages but all with a sense of urgency and a wildness to it all.
Landing in Adelaide, Australia for midweek gig direct from a month long jaunt in Russia, ’68 must have wondered what had hit them. A small but enthusiastic crowd ventured out to Enigma bar on a bitterly cold evening (by Adelaide standards), greeting the hard rock duo on their first stop on their Australian tour. The audience was evenly split, with the half sporting an eccentric mix of beanies and cardigans, standing alongside the black jeans crowd. This gave the uninitiated (such as myself) a preview of what was about to be unleashed in the dark corner of the enigma bar stage.
With drum kit perched at the front of the stage, shadowed by the mic stand, the US duo took to the stage delivering a sound I can only describe as an experimental mix of garage rock, punk, metalcore and noise. The howling anthem driven vocals were accompanied by a wall of vicious drums and reverberating guitars, regularly interspersed with guitars drenched in psychedelic experimentation and loping. At times reeking of incoherence (we all suffer from jetlag… or maybe it was due to the month long stay in Russia), the stage banter was also infused with an equal measure intelligent quick wit. With song titles such as “Track 2”, it appears that the “don’t give a fuck attitude” is almost orchestrated in an attempt to stick it to “the man”… and the crowd lapped it up with numerous songs generating a vigorous, aggressive response. However 40 minutes after hitting the stage, the band called an end to the show .. .. giving fans only 10-or-so songs for their $35, leaving half the crowd content and the other half wanting more.
It may have been a bit different compared to their last tour here with Bring Me The Horizon where the setting was more in much larger capacities but the dark and smaller Engigma Bar could not be more perfect for ’68 to lay down their grungy style of rock.
Photos by Lindsay at Rock Tsar Photography