With the sudden onslaught of temperatures reminiscent of winter and intermittent chilling rain nobody was sticking around outside Auckland’s Powerstation last night to wait for friends. As always, the door staff – who were braving the elements – made entry as easy as possible and more importantly quick! However, I was more impressed to see them picking up rubbish during their not so busy periods. It’s the small things like that, that make me appreciative of the staff and the effort that they make.
While most venues won’t even open the doors before 8pm, this show was all ages and therefore had an earlier start time. It was only 7:30pm when the opening band made their way out onto the stage, but the Powerstation was already at 80% capacity.
That opening act came in the form of Armed in Advance, a hard rock trio that had gone on hiatus back in April. Reuniting for this one-off show, the bigger venue helped them create a very thick, full-bodied sound that I have never heard to this extent from the group before. While the sound was probably the best I’ve ever experienced from Armed In Advance, what was lacking was any sort of passion or enthusiasm from vocalist JP Carroll. Bassist Hugh Hokopaura and drummer Ryan Thomas made the most of their opportunity to rock out on a larger stage, Carroll however, was rather reclusive and disappointingly barely acknowledged the crowd at all.
Next up four-piece alt-rockers Coridian. What is immediately obvious is their vastly superior stage presence, and their ability to fill the space available to them. Guitarist Mike Raven’s tone did feel a little off at the beginning of their opening track ‘Nonetheless’, but they soon found their place and managed to wow the audience.
The mixing at the desk seemed off, with little to no mics on Kris Raven’s drum kit, and non-existent reverb on Dity’s vocals, which sadly led to a slightly empty feel vocally in such a large venue. That being said however, Dity’s lower register range was impeccable.
Despite the audience being rather static during the performance, the applause between songs was immense, and when vocalist Dity called upon the crowd to participate and cheer, they did so with an enthusiasm I haven’t seen for an opening band for several years,
By the end of the set, the first few rows were definitely animated, and the energy was high leading into the headliner.