Augustines, Sheffield Plug

American indie rock band Augustines played at Sheffield on the 21st October as part of their farewell U.K. tour.

By Jane Howkins.

Indie rockers Augustines are currently performing across the U.K. on their final ever tour, and we managed to catch them perform at Plug in Sheffield last weekend.

The group announced their decision to split up at the beginning of September this year due to presumed financial issues, which is very disappointing considering how much of an inspiring band they have become since their inception in 2010. They’ve gained a reputation as an excellent live band and in Sheffield they certainly lived up to that. Sadly we missed support act Fatherson due to an early stage time, but apparently according to those in the audience they were pretty good, with a sound not too dissimilar to the headliners.

When Augustines took to the stage, the crowd went wild. Everyone there knew that this might be their last chance to see them perform live, and there was definitely an emotional feeling that was both triumphant and bittersweet in the air. The band seemed to know this too, and after the encore it even seemed like they were trying not to cry, which showed how much they cared about the fans and the music they had making.

They kicked things off with Headlong Into The Abyss (after their Highway 1 Interlude was played in the background), before running through an amazing setlist pulled from all three of their albums as well as a cover of Tom Waits’ Waltzing Matilda and Waiting On The Stairs by Pela – the band that members Eric Sanderson, Billy McCarthy were in before being in Augustines. Speaking of Pela, the drummer from that band (Tomoslav Zovich) joined them onstage, which was fantastic to see as well.

The band had great banter with the audience, with frontman Billy McCarthy at one point re-enacting part of a Zorro film and singing random pop songs from the eighties back at the crowd. They were also extremely passionate on stage, with McCarthy singing so hard and so strongly that you couldn’t help but to sing along with him. Particular stand out moments were Landmine, Chapel Song (performed with the most intensity we’ve ever seen a live band exude) and Strange Days, a song that the band don’t play much anymore that got the audience singing and dancing along as much as they could.

After the encore, McCarthy returned to the stage to play a few songs by himself such as 2014 single Weary Eyes and the aforementioned Waltzing Matilda, before the rest of the band rejoined him to run through a few more songs. Augustines played one of the most intense and beautiful sets we have ever seen from a live band and it is a crying shame that they’re having to split up. We hope that they have every success in their future endeavours (apparently they’re already working on new projects) and maybe in a few years they might be able to get back together for a few more shows!