I'd heard about Anthology as a new venue a couple of months back, and any new venues in Auckland that local artists can play after the demise of the legendary Kings Arms are always welcome. My buddy and I were greeted at the door by two friendly bearded characters that turned out to be the drummer and guitarist of the headline act.
It's always nice to get a friendly welcome when turning up to a local show, and as is the way of any underground scene, the band members are hands-on running their show.
Anthology, situated on K Rd, is a small to medium-sized venue where concrete, large metal pipes and chandeliers collide. It has a small but well-equipped bar and with friendly staff. The venue has a chic industrial vibe and I wondered how heavy bands were going to sound in this concrete/glass room and as predicted the sound was a little harsh/thin but nonetheless it was still better than some other comparable small venues I've been to.
To kick this evening's entertainment off are local five-piece Outside In. Lead singer Mikey Brown, rocking a demented accountant look before changing into a bathrobe, was very entertaining indeed. My first impressions of these guys are whilst technically proficient, they just need to work on song structures a little more, it was little hard to grasp onto any meaty choruses and unfortunately the vocals and guitars were a little thin in the mix which didn't help matters, but do I think this band have great potential, and I do like the psychedelic prog-rock direction which seems to translate better in their recorded material than live.
Next up were noisy three-piece Animalhead. I've played a couple of shows with these guys before so I knew what I was in for. These dudes seriously have enough energy between them to power a small town. I'm a big fan of the 90's sound and these guys bring the good parts of that era together in a very dynamic and energetic way, think Rage Against The Machine grooves mixed with Helmet type riffing and with a lashing of dessert rock thrown in for good measure and you'll get the cut of their gib. Drummer Dan hilariously rocking a large Panda head for the first track showcasing their humorous side, these guys kick into high gear right from the get-go. Highlights were Stoneface Killer and Rabbit Hole, a tight set with a tonne of energy, definitely check these guys out live if you haven't already, well worth it.
Crooked Royals were up next, and whilst I'm not a fan of this style of earnest screamo metal, I can see why people who dig this genre would like these guys. Their show featured two tag-teaming vocalists and technically these young guys were very proficient at their instruments, but I feel their music was lost a little with a thin mix, for some reason the guitars and bottom end were a little lost in that room.
Even though Crooked Royals are not my cup of tea they played with a lot of energy and were tight and focused. For fans of screamo math metal, this band will float your boat for sure.
Now for the main event. My band Hunt The Witch played a gig with Coridian back in 2015 and I have to say I didn't get them back then, but it's amazing what time and evolving your sound does to a band. What impressed me about these guys is that their songwriting has improved tenfold.
Live, they are a tight beast. Kraven and Ribs provide a solid bottom base to the cake for Mikee (Guitar) and Dity (Vocals) to throw their sweet icing over the top. Especially impressive was Dity's grasp of emotion and melody all the while smiling away, having the time of his life performing, you feel that he is passionate about what he's singing and believes in it and is not simply going through the motions.
Playing choices cuts from 2017's Caldera, including the excellent track Seed, Coridian also treated us to a cool new track called Redefine and a rousing rendition of 2018's Better Off before ending the set with this writer's favourite track Reflections; a song with a chorus that could easily fill any stadium. One final tune for the encore, we were treated to a sweet new track called Rite Of Passage, and it's a little ripper. Rite Of Passage is due to be released very soon, and it's sure to delight Coridian's fans.
In this genre of alt melodic hard rock these guys lead the way in New Zealand, and now that Blindspott has left the building these dudes could easily fill that void given the right opportunities. If their next album is as good as the songs debuted at this show then they can certainly reach the lofty heights they are seeking and deserve. Good luck to them I say!