LIVE REVIEW: SPIT SYNDICATE Bring the Swagger to Howler


Spit Syndicate performed as part of their One Good Shirt Had Us All Fly Tour – with support act Jackie Onassis, at the Howler venue in Melbourne, on Saturday 1st July.

Spit syndicate

There’s something about those boys from the One Day crew. You get the sense that they’re tapped into something special, riding a board of talent on a wave of cool. The ability to instantly create this sense of the party, where everyone’s invited and there’s fun for all involved.

The interesting thing about seeing them at work on their own craft is it allows that slight degree of separation, a chance to really see the personality of each member and the maths they add to the whole. Check the maths behind the whole.

To start, Howler was already well-full for Jackie Onassis, who enlivened the crowd with crafty beats on a frigid Brunswick night. The engagement was relentless from the start, with enough energy flying about to ensure nobody was left still. The crowd was treated to a joy-ride feature as he came on stage to support the Beyonce ‘Drunk In Love’ cover.

“Joy-Ride said he’d man the decks before the next act, queue the funky intermission.”

When Spit Syndicate hit the stage it was pure swagger and energy. Case in point was the track ‘Emperor’s New Flows’, an arrangement equal parts ruthless bravado as class n’ style. In other words, sharp words delivered so smooth you’d barely notice it was an insult.

There’s a special kind of effortlessness to the pace and rhythm of Nick Lupi and Jimmy Nice weaving in and out of each other’s lyrics, snapping into songs with a zen like precision. They were completely at ease during the show, fist bumping crowd members, sharing anecdotes between songs and giving props to crowd members who’d been fans since it all started.

Credit also has to be given to the curation of the set. They allowed the crescendo to build and never lost track of tempo. Tender track ‘Mum’ for instance came off the back of a heavier number, allowing that inch of respite before they exited stage left, only to come back to roars of “one-more-song” and drop ‘Know Better’.

This gig had an overwhelming sense of celebration to it. Although most album tours intend that, rarely do they convey that raw sense of elation and energy, you get the sense something’s been achieved here. Shows like this breed fans for life, Spit Syndicate on that point can count one more amongst the ranks.

Words by Matthew Toohey.

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