Ilgaz Reviews The Murlocs at Bowery Ballroom, NYC

Ilgaz Reviews The Murlocs at Bowery Ballroom, NYC

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Hailing from Geelong, Australia, the Murlocs are five fellas with an impressive ability to shake their crowds into a dance trance. RPM’s Ilgaz shares her first time account seeing the Murlocs and how they proved to be a “must see” band.

 

The Murlocs quintuplet consists of Matt Blach on drums, Cook Craig on bass guitar, Tim Karmouche on keyboards, Cal Shortal on guitar, and Ambrose Kenny Smith on vocals and harmonica. In support of their fourth studio album Manic Candid Episode, released on March 22, they have embarked on a tour of both the US and their native Australia – stopping by NYC’s Bowery Ballroom to boogie with a near sold out show. This was my first Murlocs show, and truthfully I went in half blind; ‘Noble Soldier’ and ‘Happy Face’ were enough to get me to venture into Manhattan and navigate through the subway shutdowns.

 

The Murlocs - Noble Soldier (Official Video)

 

Upon arrival, my friend and I made our way upstairs just enough to catch the last song of the opener, Moonwalks, as people began to trickle in and out, beers and joints in hands, waiting eagerly. After Moonwalks, The Murlocs began to set up and a tight crowd formed the first several rows of the audience. A few minutes late of start time, the band come on stage and delved right into ‘Noble Soldier.’ Instantly, a mosh pit erupted, feeding off the up tempo snares, guitar grooves, and Smith’s harmonica complimented vocal brawls. If you weren’t moshing, your brainwaves were transfixed to bopping alongside your neighbor. People were pushing forward from the back to try and get in on the action out front, and one girl handed me her drink to hold (I guess I looked the most trustable?); I lost count at the number of people who crowd surfed onto the stage and swan dived into the pit. One guy managed to do a back flip ON the crowd. You could see the pain on the security guard’s face.

 

The Murlocs - Loopholes

 

Their eclectic setlist pleased older fans and kept the crowd energized. In between fast paced songs Uncle Murl Ambrose checked in on us, making sure we’re staying careful and giving us a moment to breath with slower songs. I went in liking two songs, and left loving the entire set, especially Loopholes (that’s a proper tune!). With ties to King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard, as Smith and Craig wear multiple band hats, King Gizzard’s Stu Mackenzie and Eric Moore joined the stage for the encore cover of Hot Chocolate’s “Every 1’s a Winner.” Incredible. The Murlocs proved to be an exciting, energetic, garage rock bands to mosh to, and Smith is one of the most animated frontmen of modern music.

 

Photo credits: Jack McGraw

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