If you look at an album review from L.A. outfit The Bronx from the last …
DEEZ NUTS & TRASH TALK // Summer Hedonism Tour
+ She Cries Wolf + Time Crisis + Hammer Time
January 6, 2017 – The Brightside, Brisbane
It’s Friday night (again)! And the leftovers of a stormy evening are rolling through Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley, as we rock up early for tonight’s Summer Hedonism tour spot at The Brightside. With an original line-up of seven (yes, that’s right, S-E-V-E-N, like those magnificent westerns, or the number of Fast & Furious movies that got made before they didn’t get the hint) bands, it’s now been mercifully reduced to five acts, and we grip a G&T for those we’ve lost as we make our way inside.
Given the dubious task of opening tonight’s show, we feel slightly bad for New Zealand-via-Melbourne mosh-friendly act Hammer Time. Even with the trimmed down line-up and set times pushed back, it’s mostly an empty room as the five-piece take the stage. Thankfully their take on rock’n’roll influenced hardcore is well polished, head-bang worthy and perfect for fans who like their two-step with some dirty Southern licks. Songs like Everyday Struggle from 2014’s Black Sheep LP evoke the best elements of groups like Kids Like Us, The Hope Conspiracy, Bars, Cursed, or essentially any Kevin Baker/Chris Colohan project. It’s a shame that Hammer Time couldn’t warm up a bigger crowd for their first time in Brisbane, but they’re definitely an act to keep an eye on.
Next up are local hardcore/crossover act Time Crisis, who rip into their set and get heads banging almost instantaneously. Recalling the hey-day of 80’s punk and thrash, tracks like It Never Ends and Trust Is Lost from last year’s Summon the Pain 7-inch finally get the pit activated—albeit marginally—as two punters take turns between chucking a mosh, slapping each other’s backs and turning collision into embrace. It’s a solid effort from Time Crisis though, with the crowd gladly reciprocating for every shredded riff, dive-bomb and stomping rhythm. Perhaps 2017 might bring a full-length album into being? We can only hope.
Main support this evening comes in the form of Gold Coast demolition crew She Cries Wolf, who are no strangers to The Brightside, after a great set with Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes last month. The metalcore five-piece get down to business, and with vocalist Luke Harriss back from a brief absence, the group are primed and ready to rip. Pulling heavily from their second album Doubt, tracks like Continuance and closer Churchblock go off like a hand grenade, with cracking snare hits, searing riffs and punishing screams. While more anthemic cuts like We’re All Arsonists and Chapter II showcase the band’s penchant for creative melodies, inciting some chants, sing-a-longs and stage invasions amongst their own brand of stage fury.
As internationals Trash Talk begin their sound-check, there’s a restless energy permeating throughout the crowd. This particular California crew have a live reputation that almost borders on legendary, and it seems there’s more than a few fans here tonight who are well aware of the imminent danger posed. Now, we could try and use some fancy language to dress up the band’s set tonight—with their own hazardous blend of hardcore, skate punk and power-violence, showcased on no less than five studio albums and seven EP’s—but we don’t really need to.
This particular California crew have a live reputation that almost borders on legendary, and it seems there’s more than a few fans here tonight who are well aware of the imminent danger posed.
Simply put, it was fucking carnage, and instead we’ll just give you the frantic blow-by-blow: Destroy; circle pits; vocalist Lee Spielman asking if the crowd smokes weed, then asking them to prove it; Hash Wednesday; Spielman smoking a blunt on stage, singing “Jesus is in me at a premium price/Jesus is in me/I am the body of Christ”; Awake; moshing; Lepers To Feed The Lepers; shirtless stagedives; Spielman making the crowd sit on the floor, before ripping the pit open; Walking Disease; bassist Spencer Pollard shouting out to “the only black guy here tonight, who felt safer on the stage than in the crowd”; Sacramento Is Dead; Spielman channelling the crowd up the stairs in a rush on the bar; spilt drinks and lost shoes. Who said hardcore wasn’t dangerous anymore?
After the unhinged chaos of Trash Talk, it was time for some orderly fun and games with Victorian party monsters Deez Nuts. The venue floor is packed, proving that even in Queensland’s stifling heat and intermittent downpours, punters are only too happy to rep their respective hoods. With plenty of hip-hop inspired hardcore anthems in his arsenal, vocalist JJ Peters brings nothing but good vibes, as he stalks the stage, smiling gleefully and throwing the mic out at every opportunity. New tracks like What’s Good alongside old favourites like capitalist ode I Hustle Everyday get the crowd worked up, with the closing refrain of “Make money, money, money, make money, money, money/Take money, money, money, take money, money, money” threatening to bring the roof down.
Closing out with the rousing Band of Brothers, Deez Nuts give an earnest and fun performance, with Peters almost drowned out from the continuous pile-ons, mic grabs and crowd participation.
Across a 45-minute set, the four-piece bring the hits, pulling from their back catalogue and sticking to bangers from recent full-length efforts like 2013’s Bout It! and 2015’s Word Is Bond. Bassist Sean Kennedy keeps the bottom end thick and fat, playing most of the set with his eyes closed and a grin firmly fixed in place. Drummer Alex Salinger hits the skins like a man possessed, while guitarist Matt ‘Real Bad’ Rogers makes it clear that the band’s self-espoused, hard-drinking, chimney-smoking lifestyle isn’t all talk. Despite being thoroughly (and quite obviously) lubricated, Rogers keeps the riffs flowing and even chimes in with same vaguely decipherable stage banter. Closing out with the rousing Band of Brothers, Deez Nuts give an earnest and fun performance, with Peters almost drowned out from the continuous pile-ons, mic grabs and crowd participation. After ten years in the game, and an honest beginning as a one-man studio project, Deez Nuts are still a force to be reckoned with in Aussie hardcore, and from tonight’s response, they won’t be going anywhere any time soon.
Catch Deez Nuts & Trash Talk at the Enigma Bar on January 13 and Deez Nuts at UNIFY Gathering Saturday 14.