The Sydney metallers returned for a second Melbourne gig at The Forum on Sunday, June 19.
Following a sold-out show on the Saturday night, Northlane returned to the stage at the Forum to round out their impressive Obsidian album tour on Sunday.
Opening as the main support act for the tour was Plini Roessler-Holgate, who performs under the moniker of Plini. As one of Australia’s most unique multi-instrumentalist projects, Plini had the crowd absolutely in awe as they watched his on-stage band perform the musicians’ incredibly tech djent stylings.
With the crowd mesmerised, it came as a big disappointment for many when the group’s set was cut short, but based on the commotion it seems like Plini just gained 1,000 new fans.
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If you’ve never come across Northlane, you’ve clearly been living in isolation for a lot longer than the last two years. Having transcended the barriers of the ‘heavy scene’ to become one of the most bonafide and well-respected touring acts in the country, Northlane are now setting their sights on more of an EDM rooted approach. As seen on their latest album Obsidian, drum and bass and trip-hop-inspired soundscapes have become more at the forefront of the band’s sound, leading to the big question…how will this go down live?
The answer? Immaculately.
With a clear focus on the delivery on the set, EDM interludes and outros were added to ensure a flow akin to a DJ set, with pyrotechnics and a mesmerising large scale on stage production added for extra good measure.
Opening with ‘Clarity’, it was evident how well-received Obsidian was as an album. From the opening twangs of guitar to the final breaks at the end, the crowd was in a frenzy, with singalongs and moshes immediately breaking out. ‘Xen’ was a standout with Marcus Bridges’ crooning vocals adding such an enchanting feeling to the song’s powerfully ambient bridge.
‘Quantum Flux’ made a surprise appearance which was clearly adorned by fans of the group’s earlier material, as was the industrial heavy ‘Is This A Test?’, which saw Nic Petterson’s drums delivered with a powerful tone that felt like it was shaking the room whenever his kick drums hit. 4D saw guitarist On Deiley utilise a MIDI pad controller to add impressive soundscapes alongside Jon Deiley’s slacked bassnotes.
Highlighting one of the most impressive additions to the group’s new sound was hit single ‘Carbonized’, which saw Bridge’s vocal cadence take on a rapping approach that creates such an evocative tone that’ll hopefully find its way into the group’s songs in future.
Finishing with ‘Obsidian’ it felt clear that the crowd was incredibly satisfied, people weren’t hounding for excessive encores or berating the band for playing songs that didn’t make their way into the set, they were content. Because it wasn’t just a set, it was a performance that was not only spectacular in its soundscapes but in its visuals and execution; realistically, what more could fans ask for?
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