Photography by David Harris
Ceres brought out their biggest team yet to launch their epic new album, We Are a Team.
Five years ago I reviewed a record of a small unknown band for a punk website and gave it a perfect 10. The album was called I Don’t Want To Be Anywhere But Here by a Melbourne band named Ceres, who just sold out the Corner Hotel. A sense of pride came from this, and the group were just as ecstatic based on their giant grins and shocked glances to one another between songs.
To help celebrate this achievement, the five-piece brought out some high-quality support acts starting with Eaglemont. A three-piece led by emphatically powerful vocals and socially conscious lyrics, Eaglemont offered up some driving alternative rock that was laidback yet energetic, especially in the standout track ‘Hound’. They closed their set with some helpful lyrical advice, “Try not to be a dick”.
Next up was Ro, predominantly a solo artist; however, backed by a live drummer, she stopped the room the second she began to sing. Ro’s vocals are something to witness, and her songwriting is on the same level. The most beautiful moment of the set was when she held the stage by herself singing, “You took my heart like it was a pill”, with a near silent, and packed, Corner watching in awe.
A little ‘Pressure Down’ by John Farnham cranking out the speakers led to Ceres triumphantly taking the stage for the moment they have worked hard to attain. With their third album, We Are a Team, the band has cemented their headline status in what has been a very natural progression. Opening with the album’s first track, ‘Marriage’, it was clear that the crowd were well-versed in the latest music, singing along to every word.
The singalongs would continue all night. From ‘Laundry Echo’ to ‘Happy In Your Head’, the start of every song made audience members turn to their friends and nod. The band’s new lineup, featuring an extra member on keys, offered a much fuller sound and more relaxed vibe on stage as the team smiled their way through ‘91, Your House’ – the most significant crowd participation moment of the night. The main set ended with the powerful ‘Baby’s Breath’ before the group returned for the first live performance of ‘Stay Awake’, and the closer, ‘Viv in the Front Seat’, a song that has great energy live when compared to its lo-fi recorded self.
As the recordings continue to evolve and frontman Tom Lanyon continues to strengthen his voice, there isn’t much to stop Ceres’ upward trajectory. Spurred from the release of their most introspective and candid album yet, this humble five-piece are poised for better and bigger things.
Highlight: The many, loud, singalongs.
Lowlight: Ceres now have too many songs to fit into one setlist.
Crowd favourite: ‘Viv in the Front Seat’, which is a surprisingly danceable song.