Gang of Youths to headline “Back the Night” festival in Sydney

Gang of Youths’ Sydney homecoming is gonna happen a couple months earlier than expected.

The band has just been announced as headliners for “Back the Night,” an American Express-hosted music festival that will help get Sydney’s live music industry back on its feet after the pandemic.

Gang of Youths will perform on Sunday, May 29, at Oxford Art Factory. One ticket covers you for the entire festival, and as of this moment, tickets are showing as available on Ticketmaster AU.

With a capacity of about 500, Oxford Art Factory will be by far the smallest Australian venue the band plays this year. Oxford Art Factory was one of the band’s frequent venues in its early years. They played there six times between 2013-2015, most recently on June 2, 2015.

Back the Night is a one-night festival with more than a dozen artists performing at six venues across Sydney. Money raised will benefit Support Act, a charity that assists members of the music industry who are facing hardships.

London Grammar was previously announced as the headline act, but they had to drop out due to “an unforeseen personal issue.”

Gang of Youths will be playing its first Australian gig in more than two years. Their last “home” gig was the Down to Earth climate relief concert on February 26, 2020. They weren’t due to return to Australia until August as part of the fourth leg of the Angel In Realtime tour — and when they return at that time, the band will be playing some of the biggest venues in the country.

Gang of Youths Scheduled to Appear on Jimmy Kimmel Live Next Week

Gang of Youths is scheduled to complete the U.S. late-night TV trifecta next week with an appearance on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live.

The band is listed as musical guests on the Wednesday, May 18 show. It’ll be interesting to see if and how Donnie’s hand injury affects this performance.

Gang of Youths has already performed on Kimmel’s two primary late-night competitors. In December, the band did a pre-recorded version of “The Angel Of 8th. Avenue” on CBS’ The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. And just last month, they performed “In The Wake Of Your Leave” live on NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

Jimmy Kimmel Live typically airs right after your late local news on ABC affiliates, but check local listings to confirm when it’ll be on in your area.

Gang of Youths in Philadelphia: The Good, The Bad, and the ??

If Gang of Youths were to decide against ever scheduling another gig in Philadelphia, it’d be totally understandable after the bad luck the band encountered there this week.

It began on Thursday, just a few hours before their scheduled gig at the Theatre of Living Arts. The band announced on social media that “one of our crew received a serious electrical shock” during soundcheck. Though the band never announced who it was, we understand that the shock victim was longtime tour crew member Stuart Dew. We also understand that he’s doing fine now.

(Coincidentally, this isn’t the first time electrical problems have impacted a GOY gig. In the summer of 2019, their appearance at the Bushstock Festival was canceled because of a “faulty power supply” that made the stage unsafe for artists and fans.)

The band’s post mentioned “serious electrical issues on stage” and that all ticket holders would get a full refund.

While saying they couldn’t do a full show, the band also announced that Dave would do an acoustic set from out on the venue floor. Turning proverbial lemons into lemonade, Dave and Tom performed a 10-song set and even took audience questions in between songs. The set included the first performance of “Kansas” since November 2018, and rare performances of “Fear And Trembling” and “Do Not Let Your Spirit Wane.” It was a magical and unforgettable evening by all accounts from the almost sellout crowd. See the full set and a bunch of social media photos/videos here on our website.

That wasn’t the end of it, though, in Philadelphia.

On Friday, a few hours before its Washington, DC, gig, the band announced that Donnie had fractured the pinky finger on his right hand while the band was in Philadelphia. Donnie himself shared the news, saying he’s “unable to play the show on drums tonight in DC (and most likely the remainder of US tour dates).”

In his place, extra/unofficial band member Louis Giannamore took over on drums in DC. He’s a talented multi-instrumentalist who’s been on stage with GOY at every show of this tour, as well as at many of the non-tour promo gigs/appearances over the past few months. He’s often seen playing extra percussion on stage, and Donnie described him as “a monster on the kit, too.”

It remains to be seen if this’ll be the plan going forward for the rest of the tour; the band has six shows left over the next 11 days.

One thing’s for sure: You can bet they’re glad to be far away from Philadelphia.