When the ticketing information for a tour is labelled as a “victory lap” for a debut album, you can’t help but set your standards high. The bar is raised even higher when its local turf, so come Friday night, I was truly relying on Northeast Party House to pull me out of my uni assignment funk. As The Hi-Fi rapidly filled up on March 20th, I wanted to know what made these local favourites a national treasure. Everything I needed to know was about to unfold before me.
The Pretty Littles kicked things off with their couldn’t-give-two-shits, shut-up-mom mix of fuzzy punk and Wavves surf – but not before dedicating their set to Jesus. With songs such as ‘Dingo The Lady’s Man’ (a song about a man who had a wart on his penis) and ‘Religon is My Favourite’, they are a laugh a minute. Their front man can’t sing, but there was enough reverb to make up for this small technicality. It was a shame it took the duration of their set to lure a crowd to the main floor, as they were a lot of fun and I believe as a headliner, these guys would be absolutely raucous. They finished with a kickass cover of TV On The Radio’s ‘Wolf Like Me’. Also, I am fairly sure that Zayn Malik quit the One Direction world tour to drum for The Pretty Littles. Just saying.*
Next up were Food Court, picking up the energy where The Pretty Littles left off. Whilst high intensity, Food Court didn’t quite match the surprise factor of The Pretty Littles, nor did their front man have the same slightly gross but strangely appealing charm. I mean, I am sure he is just as gross yet appealing but it didn’t shine through. However, they nailed repressed teen angst to a tee and got the crowd moving along to their chugging garage tunes.
With the raw sound of the supports and the positive responses from the crowd, I inferred that perhaps Northeast Party House erred towards the rock genre. Much to my surprise, Northeast Party House are more of an electronic group with a punk following. Things went off. No, things went OOORRRRRRFFFFFFF.
NPH’s music is undeniably danceable. Slick vocals lock lips with synth goodness, before being roughened around the edges by brittle guitar riffs and deep channels of bass. It became obvious why the crowd had been frothing. Zach Hamilton-Reeves, a front man of few words, threw himself the set with ‘Coming Down’. Fuelled both by a powerful formula of grooves, a cohesive live sound and crazy energy stores from the band, the crowd went nuts. It is genuinely a great feeling to pause, mid-gig, and to see the majority having a great time, beer or no beer.
Rolling through with the bulk of Any Given Weekend – including crowd favourite ‘Youth Allowance’ and the slow-brewing magic of ‘You and I’ – there was nary a still moment during the night. It all sailed out on an incredible high with ‘The Haunted’, sending everyone bonkers. The encore, however, was a little bit of a disappointment for everyone but Hamilton-Reeves, who threw himself into the crowd for some gentle surfing whilst the support’s front men jumped onstage for a cover of Blink 182’s ‘What’s My Age Again’ before the band ditched. Despite this, I don’t think a Friday night could get much better than bouncing around to Northeast Party House.
*Not actually Zayn Malik. Was hoping it would be like the time where Matt Corby was the keyboardist for Jarryd James.