Something has happened at Lower Than Atlantis HQ.
Since they formed, way back in 2007, Lower Than Atlantis have become recognisable by an air of preponderance. Their apparent laddish tendencies have been counteracted only by a detectable aloofness.
God only knows where all that’s gone.
The night was kicked off by Perth’s The Faim one of the newest and most promising names on the touring circuit. Garnering early support from King Pete Wentz, the four piece have embarked on this, their first UK tour, with a polished and infectious sound.
Live The Faim are finding their feet but are well on their way. Frontman, Josh Raven, already has the vocals to impress and the self-assurance to bounce off the stage and stretch over the barrier to connect with his newest fans. It won’t be long before this band explode.
Milk Teeth have done most of this tour without their vocalist, Becky Blomfield, who has stepped back to focus on her mental health.
This must have been a daunting prospect but the raw-punks tackled their new, temporary, line up impeccably. Guitarist, Billy Hutton, took on all of the sets vocals and together they brought all of the raucous energy that have made Milk Teeth one of THE breakthrough British acts.
The now well-warmed up crowd of Lower Than Atlantis fans felt that they were prepared for the headliners they’ve likely seen multiple times over the past eleven years. They thought they knew what to expect.
They did not.
Almost as soon as vocalist Mike Duce took to the stage at Brighton’s Concorde 2 he could barely be kept on it. The beauty of this venue is its shape and size which most bands can use to their advantage, interacting with their audience very closely.
But Duce took it to a whole new level.
Whilst the band thundered through Had Enough the frontman was already stretched over the barrier swinging his guitar directly above the crowd’s head.
It didn’t take long for him to figure out that with one step he could be standing on top of the barrier – a move that involved concentrated balancing and two security guards with exceptionally good grip.
Back up on the stage Duce demanded a mosh pit and then decided that the only place he could possibly be was directly in the middle of it.
He played faultlessly whilst the crowd literally ran rings around him but didn’t come away unscathed. His seemingly endless energy led him to smash his head into a photographer’s camera mid-jump, but the potential concussion did nothing to slow Duce down.
Through Ain’t No Friend, Work For It and Get Over It the high-octane bar was never lowered. The whole set list now seemed much more catchy, much more exciting, for some reason. It was like watching an entirely different band, or at least one with a whole new lease of life.
Another Sad Song seemed like an opportunity for some down time – but Duce was having none of it. With an unplugged acoustic guitar and no microphone he climbed back into the pit, had everybody sit down and shut up, and had an old fashioned sing-a-long.
The reverberating crowd participation was enough to give you the goosebumps, but underneath it all Duce’s vocals were on point.
Their English lad ‘charm’ was brought front and centre whilst Duce encouraged crowd beer chugging – but the amount of people drinking tonight was unsatisfactory so drummer Eddy Thrower was called upon.
When he realised it was his time to shine Thrower glanced over at guitarist Ben Sansom and mouthed: “me?” before taking a can, shrugging his shoulders and chugging away. This new Mike Duce looks to be as much of a surprise to Lower Than Atlantis as it does to the crowd.
The encore was Duce’s chance for another go round. He stated that “if I have to sing a single fucking lyric of this song I’m going to be pissed” before exploding into Here We Go and launching back up on the barrier, back down in the pit, crowd surfing to the back of the venue – he ripped through the entire building.
By the time they were done the whole of Concorde 2 felt like they’d just ran the Brighton Marathon. Tonight was an utterly exhausting, wholly unexpected, incredibly impressive gig.
To whoever picked Lower Than Atlantis up, dusted them off and told them to raise hell – kudos.
LOWER THAN ATLANTIS WILL CONTINUE THEIR UK TOUR IN OXFORD ON MAY 3RD. GET TICKETS HERE.
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