20 Jun 2021
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  • Die! Die! Die! - Gig Review: Die! Die! Die! @ Pioneer Hall, Port Chalmers - 06/11/2020

Die! Die! Die! - Gig Review: Die! Die! Die! @ Pioneer Hall, Port Chalmers - 06/11/2020

07 Nov 2020 // A review by Darryl Baser

Bliss Point are a Dunedin based high school band with musical lineage including drummer Tane Cotton, son of audio engineer Dale Cotton, and nephew of Shayne P Carter. Bliss Point take to the end of the room which is used as a stage to a quarter full room of their parents, school pals and unfashionably early concert goers, your humble scribe included.

Bliss Point are in the same math post punk mold as Die! Die! Die! and are a good fit for the evening.

During the Logan Park High School band’s blistering and brilliant set, Logan Park alumni, Die! Die! Die! front-man Andrew Wilson watches Bliss Point like a proud uncle or a teacher.

The two guitarists and bass player swap vocal duties during the set.

Musically the band are a blend of post-punk with liberal dashes of 90's grunge. Their musicianship is brilliant, regardless of age. If there is one thing I’d recommend, it’d be vocal coaching for the singers. I waited too many years to accept coaching, but am happy with my voice most days.

Their last song Servant was fast, with fuzzed out and crunchy guitars. It has an excellent structure and was an excellent way to lay down te wero [the challenge] to the following bands to bring their 'A' game.

Francisca Griffin and the Bus Shelter Boys are the second act on and their opening song One Eye Open is a blistering way to start.

Francisca Griffin totally has her own style, it's been similar through her extensive career, from her days under her former name in pioneering and influential Flying Nun band Look Blue Go Purple. And now with the Bus Shelter Boys (Gabriel Griffin on drums and Mick Elborado on bass) she's found a unit which gives her an added drive. By the time they're four songs in, the Port Chalmers Pioneer Hall is more than half full and there's a wide demographic of people, from people who remember The Enemy from back in the day, to high school pupils.

Francisca's fifth song Broken Heart opens slower, it's a wonderfully plodding dirge, imagine opiated krautrock. As it's a quieter song it's really nice to hear Francisca's voice on top of the mix.

Francisca Griffin and the Bus Shelter Boys’ last song, to my ears sounds like a cross between Francisca and Die! Die! Die! It's a great way to segue into the main event.

The morning after the show I sent Die! Die! Die! singer guitarist Andrew Wilson a message asking for their set list from their show. Here is a cut and paste.

Set list : New song, I Seek Misery - 450, Attitude, New song, New song, New song, New song, Britomart Sunset, Blue Skies, New song
.

Die! Die! Die! come on after a 15 minute changeover, which is pretty expedient with no messing about. As per the set list they open with a new song, and by the second chorus both Andrew and bass player Lachlan Anderson had played in the crowd.

The members playing in the crowd and bouncing along with the audience is a wonderful part of a Die! Die! Die! performance.

The first song built to the more customary Die! Die! Die! speed, with members finishing in unison, showing, as the set list of new songs does, they’ve been spending a bunch of time in a rehearsal room working together. They’re focused and watertight.

During the second song, I Seek Misery merges into 450, the band’s new current single, available on actual vinyl 7" (which I deeply regret not picking up a copy last night) features the typical, and wonderful beat displacement fans have come to know and love from the band.

The sound mix for Die! Die! Die! tonight is absolutely brilliant, Danny Brady and Nick Graham did a fabulous job of isolating Andrew’s vocal, it sounded to me like they’d multi-tracked it, and put the tracks slightly out of phase ( a trick used with Motorhead’s Lemmy Killminster). When I asked Danny he said they used, "a bit of reverb and delay".

Attitude has Andrew in the crowd, singing and bouncing along with the audience members.

The next ‘new song’ builds gradually before exploding into life with the mathematical precision of a NASA scientist making life and death calculations.

Many bands are either a wall of constant noise, or quieter. Die! Die! Die! are a rare band; they leave space, then can suck all the oxygen from a room with a brutal onslaught. They are true sonic trail blazers, taking the quiet then loud style of music making to great highs and lows.

"Here’s a new song", Andrew announces and they launch into a song with a phat groove, bass line and Mikey's drums are pure pop, just louder and faster.

I look up from note taking for this review into my phone, and Lachlan is playing bass in from of me, two feet away, and I'm halfway to the back of the hall. With both him and Andrew making trips into the crowd I wonder when they'll loop Mikey so he can come dancing too?

Die! Die! Die! write clever, and brutal pop songs, with many hooks and very danceable grooves.

Andrew announces Blue Skies is the last song, no one believes him, but at its conclusion he and Lachy leave guitars feeding back and go out the back door. The cheers of the now full Pioneer Hall are clearly audible over the wall of noise still coming from the amplifiers.

Mikey’s first back and sets the tempo, it's around 200 bpm, hope the others can keep up, which they do. It’s a glorious and wonderfully brutal way to close an epic night.


Photos courtesy of Andrew Mackay / Kea Photos

 

About Die! Die! Die!

Die! Die! Die! is a three-piece band from Auckland that was formed out of the ashes of Xanadu, Carriage H and Rawer. They play songs that are abrasive and catchy, fast and loud and like people who dance at their shows.

In the year since their first show together they played over 100 shows including three tours (each) of New Zealand and Australia, and one small one of USA.


Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Die! Die! Die!

Releases

O
Year: 2019
Type: EP
Charm.Offensive
Year: 2017
Type: Album
What Did You Expect?
Year: 2015
Type: EP
SWIM
Year: 2014
Type: Album
Harmony (Special Edition)
Year: 2013
Type: Unknown
Harmony
Year: 2012
Type: Album
Form
Year: 2010
Type: Album
Promises Promises
Year: 2007
Type: Album
Locust Weeks
Year: 2006
Type: EP
Die! Die! Die!
Year: 2005
Type: Album
Die! Die! Die!
Year: 2005
Type: EP

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