Sam Hales, lead guitarist and vocalist for Brisbane-native indie rock band The Jungle Giants, triumphantly raised his guitar and proclaimed to the sold-out crowd at last Saturday’s gig in the UC Refectory that “this is the biggest show we’ve ever played,” before diving headlong into the band’s closing track.
The electric crowd rose and fell with the thumping bass of The Jungle Giants persistent rock beat as the band played out their final track, before being dragged out for an even more energised and enthralling encore performance of ‘Feel The Way I Do’.
Central to any Jungle Giants track is movement – ludicrous and irresistible movement – a fact not lost on the ecstatic crowd. Their tracks are a workout, albeit in the best sort of way. Their energy is relentless. It possess you like some hoodoo witch craft played over loudspeaker as you dance to what feels like an unending musical high. It maybe sound hyperbolic, but witchcraft might be the only way to describe the fathomless energy of Saturday night’s crowd.
The stop off in Canberra for the four-piece indie rock maestros marks the latest leg of their ‘Used To Be in Love’ tour, which celebrates the release of the band’s latest single of the same name. The Giants are hardly newcomers to the Aussie music scene, nor are they lacking in fans. The Refectory was justifiably packed on Saturday night. Many of the attendees also saw the band when they toured their most recent album last year.
The band’s hit third record, ‘Quiet Ferocity’, was released last June and entered the Australian music charts at number 11 upon its release.
Curieux’s Fionnuala Grey sat down with Giants’ front-man Hales earlier this month to discuss their ongoing tour and continued creative and commercial successes.
Speaking of his creative evolution, Hales told Curieux that the latest record had its own identity, distinct from the band’s previous discography. The album, Hale says, is self-assured, a sentimentality which reflects in the band’s live performances of the new record.
“It [the album] was just like ‘I’m here, this is what I like’, Hale said. “And it was very sure of itself. That kind of came full swing around to playing live again. Its super easy to play Quiet Ferocity live because it is what it is.”
Ben Madden of ‘Beat Magazine’ praised the albums energy, which is transcribed without fault into the band’s bombastic live performances.
“You don’t get a choice as to whether you dance along,” Madden said in his review. “You’re compelled to.”
Hardly short of acclaim, the band’s previous record, ‘Speakazoid’, also spoke to critics, garnering a 4/5 from Rolling Stones magazine.
The night before their gig at UC, the band played an equally enthralling set at the Metro Theatre in Sydney. Before that, the band played a set at the Commonwealth Games stage on Thursday. The next stop in their tour has them returning to Brisbane, before playing shows in Perth and Adelaide.