Back the Night

Sun 29th May, 2022
Various venues
Gang of Youths will play in the intimate surrounds of Oxford Art Factory. Plus, gigs by Boy & Bear, Alex Lahey and more, in venues that might surprise you.

Sydney's live music scene has been gradually broken down by lockout laws, noise complaints and the pandemic. Now, however, the lockouts are abolished, new regulations are making it easier for venues to host gigs and it looks like no more pandemic-related capped audiences or lockdowns in the foreseeable future.

To help get the live music industry back on its feet, American Express is hosting a one-night-only music festival, with 17 acts performing at a number of venues across Sydney. All ticket sales will go to Support Act, a charity that helps those in the music industry (musos, crew, managers, etc) experiencing hardship. And while the names on the bill are big, the venues they'll be playing at are much smaller than where you'd usually find them.

Headlining the festival is Gang of Youths. Far from the usual thousands-strong rooms it typically fills, the band will perform in the intimate surrounds of Oxford Art Factory. It'll be its first Aussie show since 2017.

Also on the bill is Sydney act Boy & Bear, who'll take to the stage at Surly's American Tavern. At 2pm Delta Riggs will play a DJ set on the rooftop of legendary gay boozer The Colombian, while at 4pm pop muso Jess Kent will perform downstairs, followed by singer-songwriter Alex Lahey at 6pm.

Other acts include Bakers Eddy, Bec Sandridge (DJ set), Odette, Didirri and Brendan Maclean. As well as the above, there'll also be gigs at Italian cafe and diner Bill & Toni's and Hyde Park House.

The event has been designed so you can catch just one act, or bundle together shows to curate your own festival experience.

Pre-sale tickets for American Express cardholders go on sale at 9am on April 29, general public tickets on sale 9am May 2.

More information here.

This article was updated on May 17, 2022, to reflect a change in headline act.