15th December 2021
Review and photos by Rebecca Bush
I am a relatively new Creeper fan, they have been on the periphery of my radar for some time however, their beautiful images on the feed of several photographer friends and then, having finally listened to their music (and kicking myself for taking so long to do so) I caught their performance at Slam Dunk South and knew I HAD to see their headline show. Although it was unfortunate they had to reschedule it worked in my favour, tonight being my birthday!
Tonight’s line up is a slight deviation from the original bill as due to a musician falling ill and having no time to rehearse with a replacement, Wargasm sadly had to remove themselves from the show.
Openers ‘Static Dress’ certainly get the room warmed up with crowd surfers almost instantly throwing themselves into the fray as they blast out their brand of energetic post-hardcore.
They are chaotic but it’s not a bad chaotic, it’s fierce and has real substance. Without actually emulating the many influences at play they have managed to take them and simultaneously create nostalgia and exciting new music. Definitely ones to watch and I highly recommend seeing them live!
Next up main support Holding Absence take the stage to rapturous applause. These guys are on a huge upwards trajectory right now and are gaining momentum with every show they play.
With the release of their latest album ‘The Greatest Mistake Of My Life’ (an ironic title given the success it has garnered) they have become seemingly unstoppable. Despite this rise in popularity they radiate humility and gratitude. Singer Lucas Woodland quips that just a few years earlier he was in this very venue watching Fightstar play and now he is in front of us in his own right, and he is thankful for it.
Their energetic and enthusiastic performance elevates the mood even more paving the way perfectly for tonight’s headliners.
Looking around the venue tonight is a little like time travelling: Creeper appeal to quite the demographic and their influences shine out through their fans, from the big teased hair and dark make up of those 80’s goths evolving into horror punk fashion in all its glory with a dash of emo for good measure, I’m here for it. Creeper bring so much to the table and fully pull you into their world from the very instant the lights fall. A curtain stands between band and crowd and as the intro music plays a striking silhouette of a winged Will Gould appears and an awestruck audience goes wild!
I love that heart-pounding moment where the curtain drops and you catch that first glimpse of the band there’s nothing like it and this certainly did not disappoint, Will stands before us framed by beautiful white wings and briefly we get to view this vision before the wings are removed and first song ‘Hiding With Boys’ erupts into the air.
From that moment on the whole room is united and completely immersed in Creeper’s new romantic, gothic, horror punk delicious universe. I am ecstatic to be in the pit tonight; one of my absolute favourite tracks ‘Cyanide’ is their third track and I almost completely forget myself as I sing along elated. During this song there is a woman on the front row who has vowed at age 54 to crowd surf for the first time ever and check it off her bucket list – as she flies over the barrier, a huge smile on her face, and lands in front of Will, the singer comes forward to greet her, no doubt making her year!
It’s a real life affirming brilliant performance, Gould has such a velvety smooth, crooning voice, it’s hypnotising and beautiful. Every band member has such a commanding presence there isn’t a moment between them that isn’t wonderful. Will is every bit the charismatic front man , connecting with his audience , strutting across the stage and owning every inch of it. Engulfed in a purple haze of smoke injected with firework flashes of pyro and billowing jets of smoke they weave their magic over a room of raised hands and united voices.
We are treated to so many great moments tonight as songs such as ‘Thorns of Love’, ‘Paradise’ and ‘Damned and Doomed’ get their live debuts. The latter sees vocalist and keyboard player Hannah Greenwood take centre stage under an arch of fairy lights dressed in a wedding gown: it’s stunningly executed and even in these slower moments the atmosphere is electric.
For the next few songs we are graced with both Will and Hannah dominating the stage together clad in a leather jacket and sparkly little black dress respectively. Somehow the energy levels never dwindle. There is just beautiful moment after beautiful moment, for ‘Misery’ the lights dim to a moody blue and snow falls and drifts down onto Will stood in a single spotlight and the room is still and in total awe.
Understandably no one is ready to say goodbye just yet and chants of Creeper! Creeper! CREEPER! erupt until finally our wish is granted and we are treated to an encore ending in the incredible ‘Annabelle’ for which the whole room jumps as more smoke and fireworks fill the stage bringing the night to a perfect end.
Creeper are an absolute must see live they are just mesmerising.
Creeper Set List
- Hiding With Boys
- Born Cold
- Poison Pens
- Be My End
- Thorns Of Love
- Napalm Girls
- Black Rain
- Winona Forever
- Down Below
- Poisoned Heart
- Damned and Doomed
- Ghosts Over Calvary
- Astral Projection