Mammal at The Rosemount Hotel, Perth, 28 July 2018
Mammal at the Rosemount Saturday night? Hell yeah!
After eight long years, and one false start as bass player Nick Adams addressed some minor technical issues, Mammal were back.
Opening with a brutal version of ‘Nagasaki In Flames’, Ezekiel Ox and the boys came out swinging and set the tone for the night. Ox, shirtless and adorned in bull-horned headdress, was as intense as ever and looked rapt to be back fronting this juggernaut. Three songs in and he had thrown on a t-shirt emblazoned with “I will never play in Mammal again, Ezekiel Ox”. He then proceeded to give the fans a performance that showed just why he should always and forever be, playing in Mammal.
Ox eyeballed every person in the room while singing from either the stage or the Rosemount’s bar; it didn’t matter. Dancing amongst the fans and drinking punters’ beers, he stalked the venue like he needed to physically engage every single person to force that connection. He was good fun too.
Guitarist Pete Williamson was sensational and cut loose on ‘Maker’, while Melbourne artist Fresh Violet was welcomed to stage to deliver some rap to the guitar driven rocker. Adams was awesome on the bass and never missed a beat, while shirtless drummer Zane Rosanoski beat the hell out of his kit in a powerful display of stick abuse.
Three new songs from the boys, ‘Virtue Signalling’, ‘Community’ and the 24-hour-old ‘Dead’ (released free on their Facebook account) were added to the set of favourites and highlighted the boys were still on their game when it comes to writing sharp, powerful songs that are impossible not to scream to. The biggest tragedy of Mammal’s eight-year hiatus is the missing three albums of music that fans could’ve expected.
Mammal’s live show is a must-see. Their music can be provocative, designed to awaken the masses, inspire change and if nothing else, make you think. Other bands with this much to say have regrettably strayed into the political field where the energy and power of the well-intentioned is slowly devoured and rendered impotent. Ox in full flight is Rollins-like, not only in appearance, but in his aggression and delivery. Hopefully these guys stay together for the long haul. The world needs bands like Mammal.