Since forming in 2003, The Amity Affliction have gone from humble beginnings playing youth centres in Queensland to being one of Australia’s biggest musical exports, playing arenas and some of the biggest music festivals the world has to offer alongside the likes of Architects, A Day To Remember and Underoath. We sat down with vocalist Joel Birch to dive into a few of the key bands that shaped The Amity Affliction in their early days.
Poison The Well
“From Metalcore, they’re for sure my favourite band. Tear From The Red was amazing but I feel like it didn’t really top The Opposite Of December musically but it built on it. Then You Come Before You came out and I was like “What the fuck? This is insane and the best shit I’ve ever heard.” The lyrics are just so insane and I loved that he didn’t discuss them. He completely opened himself up and refused to speak about them. It was clear that he had gone through some very fucked up shit like family issues and trauma but you never knew the whole story. Unfortunately they were the band’s band and never got that big, but they heavily influenced me. I saw them three times I think, and every single time I was thinking “this is the best band on the planet.” They’re still a band I can go back and listen to be absolutely blown away.”
“I remember when That Within Blood Ill-Tempered and it fucked me up. I’d already been listening to them but when that album came out, it blew me away. The singer sounded like the angriest singer I’d ever heard in my life and Matt Fox’s lyrics were insane. I actually wrote an essay about that album for University. Sometimes people will contact me via social media about assignments they’ve done on my lyrics and say it’s really nerdy but I understand it because I did the exact same thing growing up. Graham from Resist Records actually put us on a Shai Hulud tour just because he knew how much of a sweater I was back then.”
“I’d say that the biggest album for our band at the time was Alexisonfire’s Self-Titled album. Watch Out came out when I joined the band, but we were all just smashing the first one. When Watch Out came out we all were thinking “we can do that”. It was super melodic and it had a huge impact on the band.”
“Norma Jean didn’t have a direct impact on us but when O God, The Aftermath came out, it made a lot of people go “Oh wow, we can do that now”. There were all these moments where music was coming out and all of these things started to click within the Australian music scene. I Killed The Prom Queen were smashing it at the time and when Parkway Drive came out it was huge. It was a really amazing and exciting time in music.”
The Amity Affliction kick off their huge Australian tour with Underoath, Crossfaith and Pagan tonight in Sydney at the Hordern Pavilion. Find all of the details over at Live Nation.