Though regrettably it would be the last chance that Singapore would get to experience Funeral for a Friend, their farewell gig at the Scape Ground Theatre was a fitting closure to their 15 year long journey in our history.
The band opened aptly with “Streetcar”, setting fans on a high for a setlist full of numerous hits from both albums Casually Dressed and Deep in Conversation and Hours. In an almost packed hall, what had etched a heartfelt and lasting impression in my memory was foremost the earnestness and honesty from the captain of the band, Matt Davies-Kreye. The years had certainly been quite the adventure for five friends with their hearts forged to a single cause of making connections and inspiring listeners. Evidently the cumulative lineup changes had seen the band replace iconic members Gareth Ellis-Davies, Darran Smith and Ryan Richards, and it was as momentous as it was a beautiful memorial when Matt paid a befitting impromptu tribute to his comrades of old whilst honouring Gavin Burrough (Guitars), Richard Boucher (Bass), and Casey McHale (Drums).
As a fan of the band since Seven Ways to Scream Your Name, I could tell that everyone in the hall that night was taken a decade back. The energy in the mosh pit to numbers like “This Year’s Most Open Heartbreak”, “Bend Your Arms to Look Like Wings”, “The Art of American Football”, “Hospitality”, and closing songs, “Juneau” and “Escape Artists Never Die”, was hysteria. And of course, there was no better way to end than with a final encore of the beginning, “10:45 Amsterdam Conversations”, the very first song that Funeral For a Friend wrote.
Thank you Angry Dinosaur.
All photographs by Aloysius Lim, courtesy of LAMC Productions.