This show was always going to be an interesting one. The Ending Is Just the Beginning Repeating is The Living End‘s most recent album – and, tellingly, it’s the only show this week that wasn’t sold out.
The result: a tiny bit more breathing room on the dancefloor, and interestingly, a few older folk in the crowd too. But they were as enthusiastic as most of the punters there. You just had to look at the guy with grey hair in his late 40s or early 50s who bounced up and down with all the young-uns up the front to Bohemian Rhapsody prior to the intro video. Mind you, the singalong for that song is getting rowdier as the nights go by.
In the said video, Cheney mentions how The Ending Is Just the Beginning Repeating “could never have been our second or third album” – and it shows. While the record wasn’t exactly an instant-hitting, runaway fan favourite, it was by far the most mature and depth-filled album The Living End have produced.
This depth transferred fittingly onto the stage. The heavier songs had an extra punch (Machine Gun, Heatwave and the single that should have been but never was – Away From the City) with punters bouncing up and down to them as if they were timeless tracks, much older than 2011. This was done despite a tall party-pooper guarding one of the poles opposite Cheney, threatening to knock out anyone who came near him.
The more majestic-sounding tracks – Ride the Wave, Boy, and Resist – were belted out in style, and showcased just how diverse the band’s catalogue is. Prior to the later track, an abruptly organised cover of The Wiggles’ Hot Potato, caused a mini riot, while the choruses to singles Song for the Lonely, For Another Day and the title track were hearty singalongs from the band and fans alike.
And, for an extra Saturday night special, Cheney kept the party going immediately after playing the final note of the title track, pulling out a VB for his infamous solo and skull montage that is E-Boogie. It’s a fantastically frothy showman’s act, and was a fitting way to finish off a show dedicated to the band’s most showman-like album.
Kiel Egging is covering six consecutive shows in the Melbourne leg of The Living End’s Retrospective Tour for Music Feeds. Check out his reviews of other shows here.