Live review: Cosmic Psychos in Melbourne

cosmic psychos

“The Psychos made me do it,” says’s Tristan ‘Gorba’ Giblin: 

You know a show’s been solid when you pop a fresh hole in the crotch of your spandex, tear the buttons off your choicest going-out flanny and lose your best beanie. But these are pretty standard casualties that the average punter at a Cosmic Psychos show has come to expect and last Friday, boy did they deliver. Clearly Friday the 18th September was a nice day to go to the pub, take it from me because I’m a bloke you can trust. Rarely have you the precognition to know where a nice day at the pub will take you, but when the only light at the end of your tunnel is the light at the bottom of your bottle, the possibilities are endless.

Back in the days when I still thought a mixtape containing ZZ Top’s smash hit Legs seven times in a row was a foolproof aphrodisiac I heard my first Psychos song, Lost Cause, and just as hair metal had taught me years previous I realised once again that just because shit wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows it didn’t mean that it shouldn’t be a metric fucktonne of fun. The last time I saw the Psychos was back in 2013 at the Brisbane Hotel in Hobart, a far more intimate venue than 170 Russell in Melbourne. There was nothing quite like seeing these blokes in a room the size of a gypsy’s caravan, where you can touch the roof whenever you get up for a surf. But despite the extravagant price for a VB, 170 Russell isn’t a venue to twist ya titty at. Over the years before and after moving to Melbourne I’ve come to see plenty of gigs at 170 but now the Psychos have set the bar higher than Steve Hooker going for another gold medal.

I wasn’t able to catch the set of the first opener WOD, but High Tension, who I’ve been hoping to get a chance to check out for a while, brought it on hard, loud and fast. I’ve got a lot of time for a band that lay out delightfully groovy thrash elements, remain loyal to proper hardcore yet maintain their own original deliverance. That’s what they were and I definitely won’t be passing up the chance to see them again. The next act was The Peep Tempel and they could be considered the calm before the storm. They had a good sound, which was pleasing to hear but the line-up structure meant they served their best purpose as a chance to catch your breath before the blokes everyone had come to see, forced it back up outta ya busted ribcage.

I’ve been really digging the newest Cosmic Psychos album, Cum The Raw Prawn, released this year after watching the music video for Better, Not Bitter, a couple of months ago. The clip, an epically bloody Charlie’s Farm style affair, is the best music video I’ve seen come out this year and there have been some major heavyweights releasing material. Their newest video Fuckwit City shows the guys back in their natural element, blood aside, and it’s a fuckin’ tune! It’s rare that I’ll go to a gig and be just as excited for the new stuff as I am the classics, but that’s how it was.

Ross, Macka and Deano hit the stage like a steam train chugging straight to hell powered by PT and VB. Alongside their new and newer material like Fuckwit City and Nice Day To Go To The Pub, the classics, Dead In A Ditch, Lost Cause and Pub all got a workout, as of course did Macka’s gut. No matter what they’re singing about, the Psychos are always infectious fun, with riffs that get your spine shaking and words that get your funny bone hard. As a life sentenced hair metal and glam rock fanboy my favourite number of theirs is David Lee Roth, which for me always elicits far more than an ironic laugh.

Cosmic Psychos was one of those shows that seemed to end too quickly because of how much fun was being thrown about. But of course it did end and it was sad to see the lights go down. I wasn’t ready to chuck in the towel so rocked on solo for a couple of hours at Cherry Bar where I bumped into a coupla solids, including one bloke who I thought for a second was an old mate from Hobart. By the time I’d realised he wasn’t, he started playing along and I was too drunk to care so I spent the next coupla hours drinking with this partylord who pretended to be my mate Burnie, while I pretended to think he was my mate Burnie. It sounds stupid but it ended up being ridiculous fun for both of us.

The night ended with me getting a taxi back to Brunswick and the driver trying to charge me 45 dollars for a 22 dollar fare, thankfully I noticed the figure before I pay-waved it. I accused him of attempting a rip and next thing we’re in one epic row and another driver had to come along to defuse the situation. As he’s leaving I couldn’t resist throwing a drunkenly purchased Hungry Jack’s burger at his departing taxi. It missed but he hit the brakes, threw it into reverse and drove back over my burger, then was back in forward and drove over it again. He proceeded to drive back and forth over it again and again with his window wound down laughing manically at me the whole time. Then he drove off. I’m still trying to figure what he was hoping to achieve by doing what he did but with the image of him doing it fresh on my mind, I couldn’t rid a bloody big mirthful grin from my face as I walked home along Albert St.

What can I say? The Psychos Made Me Do It.

Words by Tristan Giblin.