Old Blue Last
6th March 2012
WARNING: STROBE LIGHTS!
A pint is being spilled. At least five people are jumping up and down, and not half-heartedly either. For a Shoreditch pub on a Tuesday, this has got to count as an unqualified success for DZ Deathrays, Brisbane's finest – and possibly only – two-piece thrash-rock pop-brutalisers.
To a backdrop of blinding Dan Flavin-style strip lights, which sear hot colours into our retinas long after the amps have gone cold, singer and guitarist Shane Parsons and drummer Simon Ridley lay down a deceptively intricate set of pop songs-gone-bad on this first night of three at the Old Blue Last.
The DFA 1979 comparison is an obvious one, but it's the classic rock and metal canon that's the real wellspring for DZ – the primal heaviness of Sabbath, the squealing chewiness of Jack White's guitar, the furious thrash of Anthrax and, maybe most of all, the stoopid genius of anyone who's ever crushed a beer can into his head just for laughs. They might style themselves as two slapdash slackers getting lucky with a bunch of garage jams, but listen up – those razor-edge riffs, sharp song structures and knockout dynamics are no accident. Hold on to your pint.
First published in Loud And Quiet