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Twelve Foot Ninja // Acolyte // Toxicon @ The Bald Faced Stag 3rd September 2016 - ROGUE REVIEW & GALLERY

It was a trifecta of Melbourne's finest heavy hitters last night at The Bald Faced Stag.

The crowd were in early for the final show of Twelve Foot Ninja's "Outlier" album tour, and judging by the excitement that was buzzing in the line up of eager punters outside of the venue, we were all in for a great night of metal madness.

And there is absolutely nothing better in Sydney's live music scene than a SOLD OUT show at the stag.


The hardest task of the night had to go to the boys from TOXICON.

Opening for Twelve Foot Ninja will never be an easy task.

To their credit, they grabbed the bull by the horns and commanded the full attention of the early birds that were within earshot of the stage and before the first song was down, the room was three quarters full of headbanging mayhem.

These guys can play!

They were made to feel at home by the crowd from the get go, and by midway through their set and you could almost see the intensity and vibe lift from each individual member of Toxicon as they fed off the energy that was thrown upon them by the crowd. It really was a pleasure to watch.

There is no doubt about it...Sydney needs to see more of Toxicon. Hurry up and come back!



ACOLYTE, the next big thing in the magical world of prog, were next to entertain the capacity crowd, and the most enjoyable part of my night was seeing the collective jaws drop to the floor when the uber talented lead vocalist Morgan-Leigh Brown's harmonic voice echoed around the room in the opening "Monolith".

Such a powerful voice commands a near perfect soundtrack, and Jason, Chris, David & Pete delivered a ten out of ten performance that was amazing from start to finish.

It was like taking a serene journey into prog heaven.

Acolyte are a one of a kind band, and their energy on stage was epic.

They were in sync with each other, not just musically, but on a whole other level. It was almost trance like.

Acolyte were born to be headliners. It won't be long until that will be a reality.

I was truly blown away.



Usually, it's the supports that need to bring their "A" game to attempt to keep up with the headline act of any gig. But tonight, the roles were reversed.

The Twelve Foot boys had better be on point.

And lucky for the Stag crowd, they were fucking flawless.


With a light show that would rival any arena production, the Melbourne fusion-metal gods TWELVE FOOT NINJA burst onto the stage with their openers "Invincible" and "Mother Sky", leaving nothing on the table.

I must admit that I was extremely skeptical that they would not be able to keep up the vigor and ferocity of the first few songs throughout their career spanning set, but the more the crowd gave, the harder they went. I was speechless.



Fuse the funk laden basslines of Damon McKinnon, and the tightest drumming that I have heard in ages by Shane Russell, they laid the perfect the foundation for the technical guitar brilliance both of Steve MacKay and Rohan Hayes. Throw in Australia's version of Mike Patton in vocalist Kin Etic, and you have one of the most diverse metal bands on the planet. And probably the only metal band on the planet to don shinobi shozoko and tabi boots.

The energy in the room tonight was something special.

And everyone knew it.

Finishing with an encore of "One Hand Killing" and the crowd favorite "Shuriken", the Twelve Foot boys had put on a performance of a lifetime.

Lucky for them it was the final show of this tour...as I really don't know how they could top a show like this one tonight.


All photography taken by & © Copyright of Matt Bartolo / Mattvayne Photography exclusively for Rogue Inc.

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