Review: Horror My Friend & SIAMESE at Ancient World

Words by Isaac Selby
Photos by Morgan Sette

With new singles for both bands in tow and a string of interstate dates under their belts, the anticipation for Horror My Friend and SIAMESE's sold-out performance at Ancient World last Friday was understandably high. Having spent the past weeks playing East Coast shows, including key support slots with internationals White Lung and Sydney shred-trio Step Panther, Horror My Friend arrived brandishing a tight brand of indie rock that was well suited to the tone of the night kicked off by openers SIAMESE. Having to initially push through the inconvenience of a blown-out bass amp, the relative newcomers (est. 2016) to the local scene treated the audience to a strong showing of what they have to offer as a band with an introspective blend of emotive fuzz. 

Having just released their latest single, 'Computer Patient', SIAMESE called to mind presumed points of influence, Sonic Youth and the Smashing Pumpkins, as they held the packed venue's attention with gnarled extended jams propelled by tight drums and guitar interplay to match. Their sprawling sound kicked off the night superbly and even provided the soundtrack for a small yet high-energy mosh halfway through their set.

Now usually when people speak about a show tearing the roof off a building they're speaking figuratively, however during the beginning of HMF's raucous performance this is precisely what happened. The regular aesthetic of Ancient World had received a slight face lift with giant bed sheets draped over the walls and ceilings (presumably for the Fringe) that fell down at the beginning of their headlining set. As the attendees deliberated over whether to dance with it or have a few select people reach up and hold the sheets in place like tent poles, the Adelaide trio were delivering a visceral and immediate showing of the great material they assembled for last year's excellent debut Stay In, Do Nothing

With guitarists Josh Battersby and Tom Gordon sharing split vocal duties over the course of the night, HMF brought jangly guitar-fare like 'Stay In' and 'Mazes' to life with introspective lyrics and angst-inducing pummeling post-rock sounds perfect for the basement party feel of the night. Stand out set highlights came in the form of 'Same Minds' and 'PB Remains', with a warm reception also being offered for new single 'DIYS' (Drowning In Your Sea).

Seriously though, 'PB Remains' is an anthem. The scintillating finale performance piece coming replete with guest scream vocals and further eyes-closed choruses of appreciative head banging from the crowd. 

It was a perfect intimate show from a band you wouldn't be surprised to see playing plenty more open-air big stages in the years to come.