Review by Samantha Davies

Of Valleys and Mountains’ Album release tour Auckland finally moved back to alert level one and I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate other than seeing multiple talents perform one after the other. Ding Dong Lounge saw a night full of good tunes as Pull Down the Sun kicked off the third show of their nationwide album release tour. With support from Fall of Them, Coridian, and Crooked Royals, we all knew we were in for a good time.

Fall of Them were the first to take the stage, setting the mood for the night. With impressive raw vocals, and instrumentals you can’t resist moving along to. The group of four, originating from Christchurch, managed to draw in a crowd and spark up energy that would last the entire night.

Coridian kicked off their set with an instrumental piece as music lovers flooded the room. It wasn’t long before vocalist Dity Maharaj joined the band on stage to perform a fan favourite, “Rite of Passage”, which features a catchy chorus which fans in the room sang back to them. Coridians distinctive prog-rock sound complemented the vibe of the night as an entirety, and the energy and passion displayed in their set was a pleasure to watch. Their slick rock sounds kept the room buzzing as people continued to gravitate towards the stage. The four piece finished their set off strong, performing Seed II which earned them a room full of applause.

This meant it was time for Crooked Royals to take the stage, and there was no doubt several fans in the room who had been anticipating this set. The passion, coordination, and talent displayed by each member made for an impressive show, and the energy returned by the crowd was at an all-time high. With multiple moshes and continuous head-banging, the band created the atmosphere that every metal rock gig needs. It’s not often that you see a metal band with two lead vocalists, and one wouldn’t typically imagine this working very well, but this is possibly my favourite thing about Crooked Royals. Despite the “jokes” of kicking one or the other out of the band, Lee Mackley and Christian Carstensen have a chemistry on stage that makes the band all the more enjoyable to watch. This set was a highlight for me as the energy in the room was unmatched all night – with multiple moshes, people falling and helping each other back up, and fans screaming lyrics until their voices began breaking – all in the true Ding Dong style.

Tension in the audience grew as Pull Down the Sun made their way onto the stage, beginning their set with hypnotic tunes which gradually built up to become a stronger beat. My expectations had been set high by the three previous performances; Pull Down the Sun managed to meet the bar. Each member on stage put on an impressive show with seemingly no strenuous effort at all; they are naturals. The band performed “Turehu” which I found to be a well-crafted song with a catchy beat and strong vocals – the audience headbanged along passionately, really appreciating the music and atmosphere.

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