Bluejuice kicked off their national tour in support of their new single ‘S.O.S’ at The Corner on Friday night with special guests Sures and Lurch and Chief. It was their first Melbourne gig since their hiatus and they proved to the sold out crowd that they could still make them dance and sweat.

I arrived in time to catch the end of Lurch and Chief’s set and they were great as always. They seem to be getting very familiar with The Corner, just 3 weeks ago they were there supporting Deep Sea Arcade. They seemed a bit stronger, the drums were tighter and the bass a bit more prominent but Hayden Somerville and Lili Hall’s vocals were still as impressive as ever. The early-comers were definitely getting into it, while it may have been too early for dancing for most, quite a bit of head nodding and toe tapping was to be seen around the dancefloor. I’m sure they’ll be around again soon and after my second time seeing them I can confidently say they’re definitely worth catching.

Sydney 4-piece Sures were up next, their surf rock guitars and pop hooks winning the crowd over quite quickly. Technical difficulties meant that their first song became an instrumental but the crowd didn’t seem to mind as the song still sounded great sans vocals. Once the mic issue was sorted Jonas Nicholls showed off his impressive pipes and made it easy to see why Sures are quickly becoming one of the most talked about up and coming indie bands. They played an amazing cover of Kylie Minogue’s 2001 hit ‘Can’t Get You Out Of My Head’ which garnered a mixed response from the crowd, many enjoying it but many others just standing confused.

All eyes were on new keyboardist Alex Gooden at the start of the set as he nailed regular opener ‘Can’t Keep Up’ and the boys from Bluejuice instantly got the crowd dancing. Jake wasted no time getting into the crowd and throughout the night he spent almost as much time surfing the sea of fans as he did on stage, expressing his love for the sold out crowd both physically and verbally many times. Third song of the set ‘Vitriol’ was not only the oldest song they played but also pushed the crowd from excited to insane nice and early. Latest single ‘S.O.S.’ got a great audience response, proving that – even without keyboard wizard Jerry Craib – Jake, Stav and co. can still write songs that people love and will dance to. Alex on keys may not quite have the same impossible skills as Jerry, but he (along with a bucketload of samples and sequences) definitely made the majority of the show as good as any pre-hiatus Bluejuice show.

Jake and Stav’s onstage banter was hilarious and even more bizarre than ever, at one point Stav complimented the crowd by saying “You look like a bunch of crazed paedophiles and we’re the kids”. The majority of the set was made up of songs from Company and Head of the Hawk but their cover of Lana Del Rey’s ‘Video Games’ definitely got the crowd singing along, and at least one guy crowdsurfing – much to Jake and Stav’s amusement. Cheers erupted as Jake helped undress Stav who had somehow managed to keep his #Douchebusters jacket on, despite the sweltering heat, all the way up to their second last song ‘Act Yr Age’. They said earlier that they wouldn’t be playing an encore because they had already played all their songs and they’d rather “fuck hard and finish” so it was no surprise to anyone when they introduced ‘Broken Leg’ as their last song and the entire crowd erupted into a frenzy.

They seemed genuinely humbled by selling out The Corner, given their tumultuous relationship with Melbourne after they spent a few years just trying to break into the scene. You would hardly believe that if you saw this crowd though, dancing, singing and generally loving every second of the utterly entertaining show.

Wes Fahey

FULL GALLERY HERE

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