Live review: DZ Deathrays in Sydney

DZ Deathrays

It was reign of the two-piece last night at Newtown Social Club, with Hockey Dad, Bass Drum of Death and DZ Deathrays all stepping up.’s Adrian Pedić was there to catch the action:

Things got off to a rolling start with Hockey Dad, who despite the half-empty room, managed to kick things off in style with their brand of indie pop. While some of the songs were hit and miss, it’s to be expected when the group only has one EP out so far. Nevertheless, the charm of seeing the two young guys having such a blast opened up the room.

Out next were Bass Drum of Death, who were the “special guests”, given that they came all the way from the USA. With the addition of a second guitarist, they hit all the right notes; namely, loud. If you like your Ty Segall with a serving of The Ramones, you should check these guys out- regardless, as the comparison would suggest, Bass Drum of Death were an undeniably fun act, who slowly filled out the room throughout their set. Their sound was big, the songs were catchy and that was enough for Bass Drum of Death to get their due.

After a brief recess, the boys were back in town. Seriously- “The Boys Are Back In Town” started blasting through the PA system as DZ Deathrays took the stage, also with a second touring guitarist. Kicking things off in style with a blistering “Reflective Skull”, the setlist then alternated between tracks from Black Rat, and their earlier material. The shifts in style and tone were welcome, as the jumps from garage punk to the thrash pop of their latest album only served to highlight how they’ve grown as songwriters. Either way, there doesn’t seem like much that DZ Deathrays couldn’t play well – the moshpit maintained deadly momentum throughout the whole set, and not once did the band miss a step. After an absolute belting rendition of “Ocean Exploder”, things closed up with the inevitable “Gina Works At Hearts”, before the encore. Amidst the chants of one more song, they obliged the crowd with two – the second being “Sandstorm” by Darude. Devilish grins all the way through.

All in all, it was a hugely successful night for all the acts involved, especially Bass Drum of Death, who made their Australian splash. But the night truly belonged to DZ Deathrays. Effortlessly showing why they have one of the best reputations in live music, they never gave it anything but their all. The boys were truly back in town.



Interview by Adrian Pedić. Photo of DZ Deathrays, taken at Mountain Sounds, by Sophie Metcalfe.