2 Jun 2023

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When was the last time you heard something that made you feel uncomfortable? Aside from the regularity of sitting in a café sipping your ridiculous trim-mocha double cream and marshmallows when the staff throw on some more mindless dub or new R&B, that is; I mean; do you really remember putting on a record or seeing a band live and actually feeling something – something visceral, or overpowering, or just interesting enough to leave you slightly ill at ease?

Fortunately, there are bands out there for whom creation and catharsis are far more important goals than imitation and sterility. Rising from the ashes of long-time Wellington hardcore act The Deadline was Guest Stabs Host; a metallic five piece that have played throughout the country over the last two years, including support spots with notable internationals Terror, Shai Hulud, and Ringworm, and playing festivals ranging from Punkfest to Hamtown Smakdown. During this time, GSH also released a sold-out demo and appeared on Action Man Records' "Hardcore Cinema" 7"; a compilation and tribute to cinema, contributing the song "Groundhog Day". After a 6-month hiatus, they have emerged as a completely different entity. If desperation and darkness had a manifestation, it would sound like this. Fusing a base of aggressive death’n’roll hardcore with elements of d-beat punk and guttural doom metal, GSH prepare to embark on their first complete NZ tour armed with a mission to spite the stereotypes that line the narrowing heavy music spectrum and spread their bleak message to the rest of New Zealand.

Accompanying GSH on the tour is brand new Wellington act Dial. Again featuring ex-members of The Deadline, Dial’s rumbling belly of saturated noise is something that I’m expecting to take people by surprise. Putting aside hyperboles, clichés, and pretensions; Dial is something abrasive and something truly unique. The influences in Dial’s sound range from the stubborn grit of early Today is the Day and Unsane to the modern-day instru-metalisms of Knut or Keelhaul. Vocalist Tali Williams finally returns to the stage, voicing the dejection of our times with desperate clarity.

So maybe it’s time to challenge yourself to examine what lurks beneath the picture-perfect heavy music scene in New Zealand. It isn’t easy to digest, and it might not leave you feeling good about yourself. But it’s creation, and catharsis; and it’s honest to what most of us experience.

For more information check out: http://www.actionmanrecords.com/tour.html

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