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In 2009, Karnivool released their second album. Sound Awake has since become one of the most revered Australian rock albums of recent times, a direct influence on a generation of bands to have followed.
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The Decade of Sound Awake Tour should have been a well-deserved celebration of an achievement that was both an outstanding high watermark for the band and Australian music.
But we all know what happened, and the triumphant tour became a single event, live-streamed from the Heath Ledger Theatre. Any who saw it would agree that it was simply too monumental an event not to revisit. Six months on, with the world starting to open up again, The Decade of Sound Awake is now available on glorious Blu-Ray. With the gentle glockenspiel and cannoning drums of Steve Judd we are thrown into the intensity of a full 98-minute Karnivool set, a talented, tight and well-rehearsed band working through a brilliant and shimmering gem. Cinematic and theatrical, towering shadows play off the enormous curtain that cuts the band off from the cavernous empty theatre for the first three songs.
From the playing to the technical aspects—light design, sound, cinematography—this is a show for the ages from one of the country’s best bands. The Decade of Sound Awake is something not be missed.
Instead of the live rehearsal aspect other livestream events project, the absence of an audience doesn’t detract from Karnivool’s level of intensity or passion. Without the distraction of a crowd, it is easier to watch this articulate band investing every ounce of themselves into a performance. It’s almost an hour into the show before Ian Kenny acknowledges an audience at all, ahead of Deadman, paving the way for the sheer power of Change where Kenny climbs into the empty theatre and sings back at the band while Samuel-Yombich Pilot-Kickett adds live yidaki and the arena takes on the colours of the Aboriginal flag. It’s a crowning moment, but Karnivool still have more to do—a three piece brass section joins them for Roquefort and close with the latest and apparently final interpretation of All It Takes, wrapping up a massive set. From the playing to the technical aspects—light design, sound, cinematography—this is a show for the ages from one of the country’s best bands. The Decade of Sound Awake is something not be missed.