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Live Review: Everclear – 10th May 2015 – The Metro Theatre, Sydney, Australia

5 min read

As one of the biggest bands of the 90’s alternative rock scene, Everclear emerged from Portland, Oregon back in 1991 and took the world by complete surprise with a string of commercially vibrant hits that marked the rise of the 90’s alternative scene and helped pave the way for countless alternative acts that soon followed.

Over the course of 24 years, Everclear have churned out 9 studio albums and the release of Sparkle and Fade, the bands breakthrough album, and the mainstream success that was found following its release helped the band find a unique sound and an enormous fan-base who helped push later singles like Everything to Everyone, I Will Buy You A New Life, Wonderful and AM Radio into the music charts around the world.

While not the most commercially successful release for the band, Sparkle and Fade was a record that nudged Everclear from being a predominantly underground and emerging outfit into promising waters of major commercial success thanks to tracks like Santa Monica.

Alexakis and co are also currently celebrating the release of their brand new album, Black Is The New Black so with the release of album number 9 and the 20th anniversary of the outfits international breakthrough record falling within the space of a month, they are taking to the road to perform Sparkle and Fade in its entirely and order to fans throughout Australia along with a handful of the bands other enormously successful hit offerings and a token cut from the new LP.

With the Metro Theatre feeling pretty tight last night as fans poured into the intimate venue for a night of 90’s alternative reminiscing, the show kicked off a little after 9.30pm with the band lighting the wick on the show with their Sparkle and Fade LP which offered the equally energetic crowd some of the bands most famous start-up singles including the mainstream oozing Santa Monica, which gave the crowd their first opportunity to sing-along with the band, and Heroine Girl which found an early spot in the set and was met with thunderous applause as soon as the distinctive guitar riff filled the venue although a brief spat between Alexakis and an audience member who informed the front-man that he could not be heard and resulting in a dismissive remark from the musician who sharply stated “I’ve been doing this for 25 years” gave Electra Made Me Blind a slightly awkward appearance and didn’t exactly start the show off on a positive note.

While I would have preferred to have attended an anniversary tour of one of the bands less grunge/more pop-oriented records like Songs from an American Movie Vol. One: Learning How to Smile, the band seemed to feel quite at home with the celebratory expedition through an album that made the collective one of the most successful acts in the 90’s alternative scene and that has stood up quite remarkably over the last couple of decades since its release.  Despite Spark and Fade proving to be more of an introductory record for Everclear back in the early 90’s, the ureleased tracks from the LP like Pale Green Stars were met with as much enthusiasm from the crowd as with some of the bands more recognizable numbers. A lot can be said about nostalgia, that’s for sure.

The set hit a bit of a lull during the anti-climactic Strawberry although the audience were still eager at points to provide the band with some encouragingly bolshy backing vocals. Heartspark Dollarsign brought some strength to the set and provided the performance with one of Sparkle and Fades four singles.

While Her Brand New Skin, Nehalem and a Queen Of The Air slipped into the set almost unnoticed around the wall of guitars blaring through the venue and their exceptionally short running time, The Twistinside brought forth the shows most full throttle guitar shredding moment as the bands guitarist and bassist tore through the number with confidence and authority.

Despite the tour being a predominant celebration of the bands landmark 1995 studio album, they also managed to fit in a number of singles from their renowned catalogue and tracks that were certainly much more mainstream recognized than their earlier material. Dedicating a 2 part encore to later career highlights we got to hear brand new penning The Man Who Broke His Own Heart before Everything to Everyone, complete with the band bassist dropping his instrument and strings on Alexakis guitar breaking, Father of Mine and Wonderful were ushered into the set with a meaty run through I Will Buy You A New Life and a capella chorus of Santa Monica capping the night off.

Australian audiences may not be the most deserving of an Everclear gig given the bands turbulent touring days with audiences Down Under during the late 90’s which led the band to nearly break up after some Australian shows where items were thrown at the collective, but there were no chips on shoulders to be seen. Despite appearing tired and uninterested in performing some of the songs that found their way into the set, Alexakis, in particular, seemed appreciative to the crowd who packed the Metro Theatre for a trek down memory lane with one of the finest acts in 90’s alternative rock!

Setlist:
Electra Made Me Blind
Heroin Girl
You Make Me Feel Like a Whore
Santa Monica
Summerland
Strawberry
Heartspark Dollarsign
The Twistinside
Her Brand New Skin
Nehalem
Queen of the Air
Pale Green Stars
Chemical Smile
My Sexual Life

Encore:
So Much for the Afterglow
Everything to Everyone
Father of Mine
The Man Who Broke His Own Heart
Wonderful
Local God

Encore 2:
I Will Buy You a New Life

1 thought on “Live Review: Everclear – 10th May 2015 – The Metro Theatre, Sydney, Australia

  1. Interesting review, I think Art said he had been ‘in the business for 20 years’ and it did not detract nor was it a non-positive start ? I did not detect any ‘Lull’ from where I was on the floor. Full on excellent concert, at 53 Art Alexakis did not look ‘tired and uninterested’ . Your review is a bit inaccurate in my opinion.

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