Published on May 18th, 2018 | by voxx0
Lower Than Atlantis – Welly Club, Hull
Welly Club, Hull, 12/05/2018
Tonight touring workhorses Lower Than Atlantis skip the stadiums for the more intimate Welly Club, with support from Boston Manor and The Faim – and what a night it was!
2007 saw a massive period of change in alternative music; the Nu metal era was coming to a close and punk split into its many now more recognisable forms, either retreating back to the underground with hardcore, post hardcore and beyond, or going mainstream with radio-friendly pop-punk, alt rock and emo – Billy Joe Armstrong was part of Christina Aguilera’s “coaching team” on The Voice, ‘The Black Parade’ was marching on sulkily at number one in the charts, anarchy was a bank rolled commodity – nothing made sense. From the ashes rose a small group of bands that seemed to ask the question, “Why not do both?”
Lower Than Atlantis was one of these bands.
Tonight the boys from Watford will truly dominate a crammed Welly with their blend of pop-punk, hardcore and post rock angst – but more on that shortly.
First to the stage are The Faim from Australia. The Faim have recently signed a global deal and are still flying high after the immensely positive reception of their debut single, ‘Saints Of The Sinners’, co-written with Pete Wentz (Fall Out Boy). Offering a mixture of epic alternative rock, pop-punk, indie electro and more, it’s not difficult to see why these guys are rocketing to success. I get the feeling this may be the last tour they play in these intimate venues for a while as chart success surely beckons. I found The Faim really enjoyable radio-friendly rock, with a bit of depth and a drummer that puts Animal to shame. I really wish we could have seen more of them tonight.
Next, Boston Manor. Hailing from Blackpool and with a number of large shows already under their belt, including local favourite Slam Dunk Fest in Leeds, Boston Manor are another band to keep an eye on over the next 12 months. The sound here is closer to the purer forms of modern punk people will instantly recognise. Full of attitude, angst and grit, Boston Manor push the thrashier, heavier edge of hardcore with the big chorus and bounce of pop-punk to create something which is richer and fuller in sound while not relenting to the radio-friendly presentation of similar acts. It’s raw, heartfelt and honest.
Finally, Lower Than Atlantis take the stage, with pulsing lights, big riffs and bigger choruses for ‘Had Enough’. The band skilfully dance across their five solid releases, taking us on an adventure across the many genres they’ve danced with over the years – a big heavy post rock/hardcore track sits comfortable after a pop-punk track. As the night progresses the banter is strong with frontman Mike Duce owning the show, chugging a beer from a tiny wellington boot, sharing shots with the crowd and being an all around entertainer… Well, maybe co-owning the show… Out of nowhere a giant inflatable slice of pizza emerges from the circle pit. Chants fill the air led by the charismatic Duce: “PIZZA PIZZA PIZZA” – but don’t be fooled, this is not a gig of gimmicks. Mike climbs out into the crowd to play acoustically – no mic, no backline, everyone sits and sings along; what a vibe. It takes real guts to be able to carry it off with such poise. The gig continues, crowd surfers pile to the front, some taking turns riding the pizza like some wacky raft. Big shout out to the security staff at Welly on their fantastic handling of what can only be described as a writhing wave of limbs descending upon them.
Lower Than Atlantis are a force to be reckoned with live. Engaging, exciting and most importantly entertaining, they offer something beyond just the clever lyrics, big riffs and posing of sound-alikes and imitators. They are honest, fun and very accessible. I walked away feeling like I’d shared in something truly unique that would never be repeated.
- Words by Luke Goodhand | Photography by Rowan Zynoni