Live gig review by Alan Daly
© Olga Kuzmenko
Photos by Olga Kuzmenko
Formed almost thirty years ago, New York hardcore legends Sick Of It All have drawn a formidable fanbase to the Voodoo Lounge in Dublin for their first Irish gig since 2006, and anybody with more than a fleeting interest in crossover hardcore, punk and metal is sure to enjoy tonight’s show.
Taking the stage before them are the Tullamore Three-piece noise makers Murdock; a band that have been steadily making a name for themselves here at home and overseas. Building up to the release of their new album Dead Lung later this year, they play a selection of new and old tracks, full of vehemence and vigour. The audience are hesitant to engage at first, but gradually begin to loosen up, moving closer to the trio and their aural assault. Drummer Ronan Nolan is impossible to overlook, and is without doubt the pummelling piston in the Murdock machine. Like the unnatural love child of the Duracell bunny and Animal from the Muppets, he beats the shit out of his drum kit, perfecting irregular rhythms and tempo changes without breaking a sweat. Well, ok, maybe he a little sweat… but still hypnotizing to watch. Despite a muddy sound mix and a lacklustre response from the crowd who are obviously saving their energy for the headline act, Murdock give it everything they’ve got and undoubtedly earn a few more fans for their efforts.
Now everybody’s heard about the bird; the bird is the word… The comical intro track for Sick of it All makes it clear that tonight is not going to be a deadly serious affair. The opening track ‘Good Lookin’ Out’ from Built To Last is an instant explosion of energy, both on and off the stage as a heaving crowd surges forward in the small venue, showing their appreciation and eagerness to participate. Fans sing along to the lyrics from the outset while brothers Lou and Pete Koller jump around the podium like kangaroos on springs. Turbulent mosh pits form and persist throughout the majority of the high intensity set, spanning their eleven studio album catalogue but weighted in favour of their 2014 release The Last Act of Defiance and their debut 1989 album Blood, Sweat and No Tears. The tracks are unsurprisingly short and to the point, and they cram in more than twenty tracks into little over an hour. A bit of banter between Lou Koller and the audience, and some light-hearted taunting over the encore break up the performance, but not so much as to lose the momentum. An incredibly high-energy performance that leaves fans hungry for more.