For a Thursday night, the Adelaide CBD’s west-end was swarmed with more cars than usual. With Birds of Tokyo playing the Hit 107’s rooftop party, and people filling bars for pre-weekend work knock offs, there were plenty of people walking down Hindley Street. However, the Enigma Bar played host to a room of dedicated emo fans keen to see the Massachusetts band The Hotelier. Formed in 2009, this was the first time the band has ever toured Australia, as they embarked on a 14-date Australian tour featuring a long list of great Australian support acts in each city.
Describing themselves as an alternative indie, pop-rock and 90’s emo band, the Melbourne boys Ceres had the honour of filling the position of touring support for the Australian tour. Contenders for the band with both the tallest and shortest members, the group played a fun and entertaining set of solid Australian pop-punk indie tunes that had bodies swaying side to side. Channeling similarities to other Australian bands like Kisschasy, The Smith Street Band and Adelaide’s own The Hard Aches, it was hard not to crack a smile and bounce along to their songs that spoke like stories. Announcing to the guitarists in the room, “capo on 4th fret... for those of you playing along”, vocalist Tom Lanyon has a great voice that flawlessly transitioned between singing, falsetto and screaming. Track Middle Name and my personal favourite I Feel Fine, I Feel Sick were well received as the personal lyrics created a connection with the crowd. Struggling to keep his guitar in tune, Lanyon kept everyone entertained with exceptional banter and promised the next track was a “good one”, before checking his set list and letting out a sigh and “crap, no it’s not”. All in all, Ceres are a great package - good tunes, good banter, and that feel-good feeling that all bands should give you at a show. The boys make you feel at home, even when they’re away from home. 5 stars.
After last year’s success with the release of second album Home, Like Noplace Is There, The Hotelier drew their eager audience toward the stage before starting. Kicking off with In Framing, the happiness of fans within the room was almost tangible with smiles across faces, in awe of a never-seen-before performance by Adelaide eyes. Premiering material to be released in the new year, the melodic emo 4-piece outfit played hits from both their newly released album and 2011 album It Never Goes Out. Sadly, Adelaide, usually known for its participative audience, appeared to have many members unfamiliar with their tracks as they stood intently listening to a well-routined, well-executed and moving set. However, songs known like Life in Drag, got the audience moving. Closing with obvious crowd favourites - the ballad An Introduction to the Album and anthem The Scope of All This Rebuilding, the band had the small crowd joined in unison head-banging, fist punching and passionate sing-a-longs. Finishing in less than an hour without their usual encore, the Massachusetts band led the crowd on an emotional adventure with unusual and undeniable waves of nostalgia, ultimately leaving Adelaide wishing for more.
Header Image via The Hotelier
Live Images via This is Radelaide