Bring Me The Horizon's Melbourne show was a stadium-sized spectacular

The Sheffield rock band know how to put on a show.

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Image source: 
Dylan Martin

Back in 2006, few people who hit play on Bring Me The Horizon's debut album Count Your Blessings would have thought a group blasting deathcore from the speakers would one day headline Rod Laver. But it's 2019; reality TV stars are presidents, people are rich from selfies and, now, deathcore fills arenas.

To be fair though, Bring Me The Horizon have come a long way from the guttural screams and blast beats that introduced them to the world. They are now a stadium rock band with hits on the radio and a legion of fans from kids to the mature. Love it or hate it, the group has progressed to significant heights, and the First Love tour was a great example of that.

Speaking of a band who have progressed and pissed off a few purists in the process, Trophy Eyes opened the night with a set full of rock anthems from their new album The American Dream. In a similar story to that of BMTH, Trophy Eyes have traded their early hardcore sound for something a little more accessible, and far more catchy. Opening with the gang vocal hook of ‘You Can Count On Me’, Trophy Eyes have clearly been refining their live show, positioning themselves to be very comfortable on stages of this ilk. While the crowd for the opener was modest, it was clear from the singing of every word that they were fans. Expect to see Trophy Eyes move higher up the order on these bills soon.

The first of the English assault came with You Me At Six, the most radio-friendly band on a lineup that really drilled home the idea that mainstream rock'n'roll is cool again. With the new album VI under their belt, the band cracked out dance songs that significantly built crowd size and the energy of the room, with new single ‘3AM’ the standout.

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Frank Carter may be one of the best frontmen in rock right now. Backed with his band The Rattlesnakes, Carter opened the set with a handstand in the crowd before taking the stage and placing the stadium in the palm of his hand. His long between-song speeches about struggling with anxiety and love for his daughter had every ear locked in before showing his impressive vocal range with classic love songs like ‘I Hate You’.

The production value of the show stepped up a notch to make it clear that it was time for the headliners. Bring Me The Horizon walked on stage to smoke guns, streamer drops, huge LED screens with colourful graphics and a frenzied crowd for the opener ‘MANTRA’.

Circle pits began to form as the band continued their assault with ‘The House of Wolves’ and energetic singalong ‘Happy Song’. To really drill home the fact that genre is no longer a consideration for the group, the set paused slightly for a club breakdown that turned the mosh pit into a rave as a lead into ‘Shadow Moses’.

"If you stand still you're a fucking dickhead," proclaimed frontman Oli Sykes before bursting through ‘Can You Feel My Heart’, complete with the customary wall of death before another switch-up, an acoustic rendition of ‘Drown’.

At this point, something a little unexpected happened. A crowd surfer made his way to the front with a sign that read "play the deathcore medley" – a sign that annoyed Sykes for which his reply was to snatch it and use it as toilet paper. It was all in good fun and the band obliged their fans, returning to the days of blast beats with ‘The Comedown’.

The set closed with a blistering version of ‘Throne’ leaving a clear message that Bring Me The Horizon will make any sounds they like, and the pit will obey.

Highlight: The circle pit that included a considerable rowboat.

Lowlight: The circle pit that turned into a selfie pit for Frank Carter.

Crowd favourite: As annoyed as it made the band – the deathcore medley.

By Luke Carlino