Live Review: City Calm Down + Middle Kids + Ali Barter – 170 Russell (28.09.16)

Supporting last year’s extremely successful debut LP In A Restless House, City Calm Down seem more at home than ever. Straight off the line up from Splendour in the Grass, the electronic-rock band excitably rounded out their month of touring with a string of homegrown gigs at Melbourne’s own 170 Russell.

Although a gradual crowd welcomed City Calm Down as they finally hit the stage, those who made the early trek for supporting acts Middle Kids and Ali Barter were heavily rewarded.

Middle Kids may still be appearing on the radar after their performance at BIGSOUND 2016, but after hearing  Hannah Joy‘s killer vocals on their most popular track, “Edge of Town”, (accompanied by drummer Harry Day‘s passionate loss of a symbol) it’s clear the Sydney three piece are set to sky rocket into regular play, and hopefully regular touring will follow.

Main support and fellow Melbournian Ali Barter was an exciting sight to see live, almost as equal to seeing the headliners herself. The former Triple J Unearthed winner performed her popular single “Hypercolour”, recent single “Far Away” and a few covers before confessing her next song was about her being “a crazy bitch” during a fling with an ex-boyfriend, even with such an angelic voice.

Finally as the lights dimmed once more, it was time for Jack Bourke to deliver his deep vocals into a now ravenous crowd – which unfortunately for the vertically challenged like myself, left me without seeing the band for their first song, “Wandering”. Although only second in their set, the band absolutely killed it with “Son”, a personal favourite of mine.

Passion ran through the mosh after a string of old and new songs, but the crowd became fully awake, even after a few glasses in, when “Rabbit Run” was played. Finishing off the night with their latest single, “Your Fix”, the band were extremely humbled to play such an electric show for a hometown venue. City Calm Down, along with incredible supports, have come full circle to a Melbourne crowd that proved that as the band increases in popularity, there is nothing that compares to a tour that ends back home.


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