Review: CERES don’t drag it down, but uplift as they bring second album through Adelaide for afternoon show

If you’ve hung around me and talked new music in any capacity since September, chances are, I’ve chewed your ear off with CERES talk. Their sophomore album Drag It Down On You fast became a favourite of mine – channelling angst, heartbreak and grief all into 42 minutes of music, the Melbourne group landed well in my batch of ‘Must See Bands of 2016’.

And here we found ourselves on a sunny Saturday afternoon in Adelaide, in the midst of a Violent Soho recovery session at The Exeter Hotel. The beer garden had been turned into an outdoorsy live music venue for the afternoon, playing host to CERES’ album launch show, supported by two Adelaide locals. Beers a-flowin’, sun glaring down – perfect conditions for it.

Roadhouse are a band I’d never heard of before the show, though I was solidly impressed by their show. Only catching a few songs, the lead vocalist oozed Jesse Lacey vibes without being too pastiche-y about it, while the rest of the band were clearly comfortable bouncing back and forth off one another. Definitely a group to keep an eye on.

Sincerely, Grizzly have only recently begun their re-emergence to the Adelaide live music scene; since the departure of their original bass player, the band retreated to reassess, reinvigorate and start working on some new music. This show was the first time I’d seen the band play in quite a while but with new bass player Alex Ciavarolo now in the fold, I was keen.

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The older material I hadn’t heard in around a year brought back some memories of my favourite shows gone by, while the way the band performed indicated that they were indeed well entering a new and exciting chapter of their career. Sincerely, Grizzly and CERES kinda go hand in hand, so their support slot on this bill was perfect – can’t wait to see more of them in 2017.

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By the time CERES took to the stage, the beer garden was solidly full up and ready for Tom Lanyon‘s banter. The set was full of Drag It Down On You material (“What would I know? I wrote ’em…”, Lanyon remarks, favouring them over some of their older stuff), resonating well with the crowd. “Choke”, “91, Your House”, “Spinning Wheel” and “Laundry Echo” and oldie “I Feel Fine, I Feel Sick” had rousing sing alongs – even though the band had been on the road for a few shows by this point, the set still felt fresh.

Considering how much expectation I’d put on this show since throwing myself well and truly down the CERES rabbit hole at BIGSOUND this year, the boys really came through and delivered. When you leave a show that prompts this type cathartic type of euphoria feeling de-stressed and happy, it’s all you could want.

The reviewer attended the show on November 5th.

CERES finish the Drag It Down On You tour in Sydney this weekend on Saturday, November 12th.