20 Dec 2018
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Depths - Gig Review: Depths @ Ding Dong Lounge, Auckland 28/07/2018

30 Jul 2018 // A review by Rupa Kelly
It's been awhile since I found myself at a metal gig, long gone are the days of black clad, sweaty moshing where everything ended in the word ‘core’, deathcore, hardcore, grindcore. Funnelling into the small room that formed Ding Dong Lounge's upstairs gig room, smelling the sweat of closely pressed flannel donner bodies revelling in the burning of energy and joy at the expression of art categorised as metal brought back fond memories of 16-year-old me, Saturday nights spent at my local venue with close friends. As the sound checks final tests were undertaken, the first performers took up their tools and began.

REI was the first band on the bill, a collection of artists hailing from Auckland with an anime called Evangelion as their muse. The came out with energy that flowed out of their instruments, frontman Lily Mou stepping up with a humble “we’re REI and we suck” before crashing into their first number. Where the audience engagement was sparse, they called on the crowd for pit to open up and the punters present gleefully obliged. The set wrapped up with a whole audience engagement exercise, a cover of Escape the Fate's The Apocalypse, calling up a crowd member to have a celebrity shot at performing and passing the mic onto another keen person of the audience.

Silent Torture was up next, though their name suggest quiet acts of visceral physical experience, there was nothing subtle or introverted about the music or presence. With more windmills than a rapture struck Dutch countryside, Silent Torture embodied the power of the relentless onslaught in presence and sound. With guttural growls straight from the torture wracks of Hell (one of which lasted for what felt like well over a minute) the band was driven in its intention. Sadly though, much of the cheer audience interaction was lost to those at the back due to it not making its way through the microphone, perhaps this was why the crowd let out a cheer at the dedication to the video game Far Cry 5? Liam Hand threw out a few more shout-outs, one to Organectomy and one to Seas of Conflict, ensuring they were about to “take you to the beach and show you the ocean”.

Seas of Conflict came crashing out, the vocalist Kody Naidoo sporting some sick shades to take us to the beach. Calling out to the crowd to get on their feet, it didn’t take more than 10 seconds for the first mosh of the set to break out. Kody drew in the crowd, constantly shooting banter and challenges to get up and move, punctuating a breakdown with finger guns. The band was clearly enjoying themselves as much as the crowd was and the banter followed suit, the front man stating, “this is a cover of Seas of Conflict”. Music wise, the band was technical but approachable, constantly building and crashing down into powerful breakdowns which the crowd could only help but get involved with. For the final tune, they invited on stage Josh Bain, the vocalist from Depths to wrap up the show. Overall, the performance was fantastically put on, the energy of the band oozed from their activity and swagger to make and encompassing and highly enjoyable experience.

Organectomy made their way up all the way from Christchurch to serenade us with sci-fi and horror themed honeyed music. Alex Paul called out continuously like a berserk pied piper for circle pits, the crowd happily fulfilling his commands, lowering himself down to the eye level of the closest audience members harshly releasing his fired words directly into their faces. After a particularly heavy breakdown bassist Tyler Jordan has a contrasting sheepish shrug to offer. The band also weaved in a few instrumentals and a sample from Alien Resurrection, crafting in a few different flavours of well-built excitement in the crowd. The set unfortunately cut short, Organectomy went out on Alex’s favourite song, a tune called Terror Form, challenging the crowd to “make this one special”, a raucous send off to the well executed-set.

The final band up was the main billed Depths, a Deathcore collective from Palmerston North. The performance was painfully delayed by unfortunate technical difficulties, after a drawn out wait and a few of the audience members seeming to sober up in the unexpected intermission, Depths cracked straight into their set with angry fire. Josh Bain, the front man of the group, constantly pacing on the stage throughout the set, challenges the audience with his captivating and intense gaze. The set broke down into a tense and moving instrumental, the lights shifting and changing colours; painting an empyreal scene before cascading back into a chaotic and fierce breakdown that cemented the crowd firmly into the intense adventure the band put forth. “We ain’t done yet” Josh eagerly shouts before breaking the crowd back in for another revelries mosh pit. As the night draws to a close Josh brings the audience in one more time, before finishing off with a thank you to the rest of performers that night.


Review written by Rupa Kelly

Photo provided by Amanda Hailwood

 

About Depths

Bringing a modern, aggressive approach to Death Metal, Palmerston North based Depths have been making their mark on the New Zealand heavy music scene since their inception with their crushing sound and passionate, pulverizing live performance instantly showing the nation that they are an unnerving force to be reckoned with.

After countless tours up and down the country, supporting numerous international acts including Between the Buried and Me, Suicide Silence, Thy Art Is Murder, Animals As Leaders, A Plea For Purging, Parkway Drive, The Acacia Strain, Volumes and I Killed the Prom Queen, they proved their position as one of New Zealand's hardest working metal acts and were signed by Deadboy Records at the end of 2011.

Shortly after, the band re-released their mini album Resurgence with a bonus music video for their track Of Nothing which went on to be featured on national television as well as appearing on the soundtrack to the FMX JAM 2 DVD which was released with 40,000 copies of Crusty Demons’ own Crusty Magazine.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Depths

Releases

Endless
Year: 2018
Type: Album
The Mortal Compass
Year: 2015
Type: Album
Resurgence
Year: 2012
Type: EP
Revelation
Year: 2012
Type: Album

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