12th October 1998 – The Living End released their debut self-titled album. It was one of the most anticipated albums from an Australian band EVER! Coming off the back of the massive double A-side single Second Solution / Prisoner of Society, everything The Living End had worked for since their first gig in 1991 was coming down to this, their first full length album. Would it hit big, or crumble under the overwhelming expectation.
We all know the outcome. ‘The Living End’ album is a staple in Australian musical history. Debuting #1 on the ARIA Album Chart on release, the album stayed in the Top 10 for 27 weeks. It went on to win the band “Breakthrough Artist – Album” and “Best Group” at the 1999 ARIA Awards.
The album would go on to stay in the ARIA Album Charts for 83 weeks, spawn five ripping singles and is now certified 5 x platinum. It’s one of the biggest selling debut rock albums in Australian music history and in 2011, as voted by listeners of triple j in the ‘Hottest 100 Australian Albums of All Time’ poll, ‘The Living End’ came in at #4, squeezed between AC/DC ‘Back In Black’ and INXS ‘Kick’.
25 years since its release, frontman Chris Cheney reflects on the creation of the album: “I think unknowingly our destination was always this; this album right here. All songs led here. All the gigs and all the songs we’d written and rejected over the years, all the lessons we’d learned had been building up to this….our first album.”
“Ultimately what we captured was a melting pot full of our influences but not to the extent that we sounded confused,” Cheney continued. “The way we played glued it all together. Stylistically, it had punk (West End Riot), metal (Growing Up Falling Down), pop (I Want a Day), rockabilly (Second Solution), hillbilly thrash on steroids (Prisoner of Society), jazz (Fly Away), ska (Trapped and All Torn Down), swampy surf twang (Bloody Mary), country pickin’ and anything else we thought we could throw at it.”
Almost to the day, a 25th anniversary edition of ‘The Living End’ will be released on 13th October 2023. The 14 track album has been repackaged for vinyl and CD with a 32 page booklet complete with Chris Cheney penned liner notes and photos from the period. Added to the album is a 10 track live recording from 1998 captured for triple j’s Live At The Wireless. The live recording includes a rare cover version of On The Inside (theme from ‘Prisoner’) as well as a riotous rendition of Prisoner of Society which has been released digitally today to whet appetites.
Fans can pre-order / pre-save the 25th anniversary edition of ‘The Living End’ HERE. Flick through the booklet and preview Prisoner of Society live below.
Of course, an anniversary like this can’t go by without a big celebration. The Living End have announced a one off show to celebrate the 25 year milestone to take place in their hometown of Melbourne at Festival Hall on Saturday 4th November, playing the iconic self-titled album in full, plus all their other hits, rarities and deep cuts in a once in a lifetime celebration. Advance tickets will be offered to fans who are signed up to the band’s database via pre-sale on Thursday 3rd August at 12pm AEST. General on sale will commence on Friday 4th August at 12pm AEST. Tickets available HERE.
THE LIVING END – 25TH ANNIVERSARY SHOW
SATURDAY 4TH NOVEMBER 2023 – FESTIVAL HALL, MELBOURNE
‘THE LIVING END’ 25TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION (VINYL, CD + DIGITAL DOWNLOAD) WILL BE RELEASED 13 OCTOBER 2023 VIA BMG – PRE-ORDER / PRE SAVE HERE
With thanks to Six Boroughs Media