17 Dec 2018

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Sticky Filth - Gig Review: Sticky Filth @ Galatos, Auckland

14 Oct 2018 // A review by Alex Moulton

Walking into Galatos, the sight looked rather grim; 40 minutes after the doors had opened, and less than 20 people were in the venue. Fingers were crossed that it wouldn’t be a poor turnout, and everyone was turning up fashionably late. With the Studio venue pumping across the road with the Lagered Twenty, the competition was on to see who would draw the better crowd.

Slumbug were the first to grace the stage of the main room at Galatos, and this Auckland three-piece didn’t care whether they were performing to a crowd of 5 or a crowd of 500; they just played. Known for their post-rock, grungy/sludge/stoner punk amalgam of a music style, they were heavy, they were thick, and they were aggressive.

Incorporating actual screams into their vocals in some songs, the energy and big sound started to draw people into the venue and away from the bar right up to the front of stage; a huge accomplishment for any opening band.

Yelling out asking the crowd whether they “want anal?” and singing songs that “stab your fucking eyes out!”, the attitude is visceral and authentic. The reverberating and revolving bass and drum variations, along with such antagonistic and angsty vocals sent me straight to their Facebook page to click “Like”.

Just shy of 10:00pm and the second opening act have hit the stage. The venue is starting to get packed as people are getting in position for the headlining act. Creatures are the second act for the evening and a relatively off-the-grid group that have come together from the ashes of Missing Teeth, Markdown, Shitripper, and Poisoners.

The three-piece smashed out a 15-song set, which included their recent March 2018 album Special Powers in its entirety, along with additional tracks Mucus, War Against Th’ World, and Where’d We Go Wrong. With an almost power punk vibe, their sound is reminiscent of very early days Pennywise and The Offspring, encapsulating that fast-paced, melodic punk sound with both the guitarist and bassist taking up the role of vocalist. Creatures have a sharp defined sound, that involves some nice technical guitar pieces along with the usual simple chord progressions, but it sticks well to the genre. As a member of the crowd quite rightly yelled out for no reason, “Three Chords! Short! And Fast!”.

While Slumbug elicited applause after each track and some cheers, Creatures managed to get some movement from the crowd, and a start to the moshing that would undoubtedly increase as the night progressed. With an average song length of under 2 minutes, the set was short, but high intensity.

Sticky Filth were the final band on the line-up, and as the crowd started to compact towards the stage, the band’s experience showed through, with a quick transition of equipment, minimal sound-checking necessary, and jumping straight into their set.

With around 30 tracks to perform Sticky Filth have garnered a heck of a back catalogue since the band’s inception back in 1985, and they were not there to f*ck around. Starting off with Prologue and Dig You Up, the crowd was instantly jumping and shoving as pink spiked mohawks and shaved heads headbanged across the main floor.

The relentless kick and snare combo from drummer Mark “Boot” Hill kept the energy high as the floor began to heave and bend under the force of the crowds’ movements. With slight pauses providing respite before jumping straight back into the set and getting physically hit by the soundwaves from the stacks on the side of stage, Sticky Filth played with every fibre of their being. Craig Radford played furiously left-handed, on his upside-down right-handed bass guitar, and would often forego the microphone, simply yelling at the crowd until they yelled the lyrics back at him. The energy was infectious.

Guitarist Chris Snowdon performed as if he wasn’t even on stage, wandering around leisurely as his churned out the riffs, and occasionally contributed to the vocals. Radford’s vocals are as punk as they get, with a British accent to his vocal style, which is reminiscent of the likes of the Sex Pistols and The Clash; bands that brought punk out from the underground. There was minimal banter; just the odd “Thank You” directed at the crowd, and occasional “This is a new song” thrown in.

The intense hardcore punk session lasted nearly two full hours, and surprisingly the band came through it better than the crowd. Radford was frequently spraying the audience as the perspiration ran over his lips as he sang, whilst dust and debris slowly fluttered down as the heavy bass dislodged them from the ceiling. Finishing their main set with Weep Woman Weep, Radford dropped his bass to the floor, exited the stage and immediately jumped back up to smash through the final four songs; 30 Days, The Girl With The Lugger, Mary – Mary, and The Burning. The night ended well past midnight, both the crowd and the band thoroughly exhausted.


About Sticky Filth

Veteran is a term bandied about rather freely these days, almost as much as legendary but if any one band deserves that title in this country it is hardcore punk pioneers Sticky Filth. After all not many bands in New Zealand can claim a continuous existence of twenty-six years (1985-2011).

2010 was a tough year for Sticky Filth with founding members Craig Radford and Chris Snowdon both involved in separate serious accidents which saw the originally scheduled 25th anniversary release of Fourth Domain to be put on hold.

With both Craig and Chris back on the road to recovery, the release of Fourth Domain is now the perfect comeback for these hardcore punk legends.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Sticky Filth


Fourth Domain
Year: 2011
Type: Album
Buy Online @ Mightyape
Year: 2005
Type: Album
Year: 2001
Type: Album
Year: 1997
Type: Album

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