After recently announcing their imminent split, Augustines returned to Berlin for their biggest headline show to date. Berlin has been a home away from home for Augustines. As soon as their debut album Rise Ye Sunken Ship was released, it was supported by local radio station Flux FM who would frequently invited the band to play secret gigs at their on-site club Fluxbau by the Spree.
Within the four years I’ve known the band, I was able to see them 14 times (including festival appearances). In all honesty, this says more about the band than it says about me. Augustines have been touring relentlessly which makes it so hard to believe that this tour will be their last.
Augustines delivered a full blown rock show with a packed setlist containing material from all three albums as well as a covers of Waiting On The Stairs from their previous band Pela and the traditional Waltzing Mathilda.
One of the shows many highlights was when frontman Billy McCarthy, armed with a cigarette and based in a ray of light, sang a capella versions of Philadelphia and Running In Place.
Video: Augustines – This Is Your Life
The show was only let down by the mostly indifferent audience. While at all previous Augustines gigs I’d been to people sang and danced their hearts out, most were just standing there apparently unmoved by the band’s farewell.
Rob Allen frequently left his drum kit to join his bandmates and heat up the crowd at the front of the stage. Augustines did their best to remedy the situation but it seems the shock of the band’s breakup was profound and rendered everyone silent.
Augustines have stated time and again that the split was amicable and seeing them on stage giving their all one last time proved that indeed, this was no empty phrase. The music industry is a ruthless business strong enough to crush a band at their pinnacle. The fact that a band as good as this is forced to quit because of financial reasons shows everything that is wrong with the music industry.
Augustines are without a doubt one of the best live acts I’ve ever seen. Better catch them while you still can! With UK dates starting in Brighton on 16th October and including a show at London’s O2 Forum Kentish Town on 18th October, the upcoming tour caps off a brilliant six year run for the band. Dates can be found below.
Also published on Medium.