GIG REVIEW: Northeast Party House @ The Croxton

Northeast

The up-tempo and ever-energised music of Northeast Party House shook Melbourne to bring in the Winter. Indie-rock loving people of all ages filled The Croxton Bandroom in Thornbury on Saturday the 3rd of June, flocking to hear the Melbourne based boys play, and Northeast Party House did not disappoint.

The Croxton Bandroom is a beautiful venue, with a very reasonably priced bar and a great space, hence so perfect for a sold-out show full of predominantly broke university students like myself. The venue was so great that after selling out one, the band booked a second gig at The Croxton for this Sunday, which proved to sell out almost just as quickly.

CROXTON SIGN

The venue’s doors opened at 8pm, and myself among few other fans eager to hit up the bar and get a good spot for the opening bands shuffled in. At the doors, we were given a pair of cardboard/plastic glasses, and told to keep them for the show; intriguing, and as I will later detail, effective. For a sold-out gig, no one was in a rush to head up to the barrier to hear the first support band, Smoke Rings. At 8:30 they came on, guns blazing and ready to start a huge night, and they gave a gorgeous live rendition of their latest single, “Go to Hell” and pumped up the crowd. As they brought on their set, these boys showed amazing chemistry and even better quality of music. Their set gave a gifted mix of The Beatles’ stylistic choices, aesthetically and musically, and new wave indie-rock. Definitely an up-and-coming band to be watched, and they’ve definitely gained a few fans in Melbourne on the weekend.

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Mosquito Coast took to stage after Smoke Rings had wrapped up, and took the crowd to another level. A girl next to me even commented that she’d only turned up because Mosquito Coast were “so f***ing dope to watch. I mean look at them. I reckon they’re high as f***” and she didn’t seem to be wrong. The two artists and their touring band were such an interesting live performance to watch; their dynamic on stage was so individual, swapping instruments with each other between songs, feeling their lyrics, in their own world. The drummer/keyboardist that joined them appeared to be so absorbed in the performance, or his inebriation, that he forgot he was actually performing in front of hundreds. ‘Let’s Be Friends’ lit the crowd on fire, with so many people recognising it and singing along, whether they knew the band well or not.

AScreen Shot 2017-06-07 at 10.59.08 pmfter what seemed like an eternity of waiting, smoke started emerging from behind the closed curtains of the Croxton stage, and the entire crowd went completely insane. Instantly, the front rows were being pushed and shoved without end, and the bustle amongst the crowd was so excitedly vivacious. Through every speaker, the sound of Elvis Presley’s ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love with You’ sang out, soon getting every audience member singing along loudly to welcome the band onto the smoke-filled stage as the curtains were drawn back. Beaming smiles shone from the stage and the crowd alike, none quite as bright as that of the dynamic Zach Hamilton-Reeves, Northeast Party House’s front man and lead singer.

 

From the band starting their set, until the last moment of the encore, every fan in the audience was swooning and singing and loving every second of their eclectic, never-boring style. Every song they played created the atmosphere of a house party to rule all house parties, dancefloor anthems with singalong choruses that can be picked up by the first line, getting everyone involved and amped for the night ahead. Heads were banging, hands were in the air, feet barely touched the ground, and Snapchat stories were endless for the whole night. Eventually, Hamilton-Reeves called through the room for everyone to put on their glasses, which would create a kaleidoscope effect with the psychedelic yet still smoky and ambient lightshow throughout the following songs; later he added a huge (and well deserved) thank you to the tour’s light designer and technician, who did an amazing job of creating such an intoxicating display. It was a gimmicky trick, but aside from that, did create an amazing show of the talent behind the scenes of this tour.

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The highlight of the show for me would have to be the performance of the acclaimed song ‘Your House’, getting everyone off the ground, jumping and screaming like no other song. Seeing that many people in unison, screaming praises along with the lyrics with such enthusiasm for a simple young local band, was so exciting. The talent we have in this city and this country is incredible, and it’s always such a pleasure to see it being appreciated by so many others.

Northeast Party House are an extensively diverse group of guys, so able to create an amazing feeling in the mind, heart and soul of every fan, with an elegant sleight of hand. This gig was a seemingly effortless, yet energising and invigorating performance. The Melbourne boys created an amazing night.

 

 

Alice Curtis

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