For Fans Of
DZ Deathrays are a Brisbane thrash/punk two-piece who have started to gather quite the underground following. ‘Brutal Tapes’ is the band’s EP release, following a tonne of gigs including both the Big Day Out and Parklife festivals and successful outings in the US.
‘Brutal Tapes’ kicks off with ‘Rad Solar’, a frenetic opener that starts the album with brute force. Vocalist and guitarist Shane Parsons sets the tone for the rest of the EP with this starting track, which is so full of energy you can’t help but get up and start waving your fists. This song is explosive but it’s also unique in it’s dynamics, starting as a throwback to the punk of old and containing sparse moments which leave room for builds in tempo and energy.
Following this is ‘Gebbie Street’, arguably the most impressive and addictive track on the EP. After the frenzied start of the album, this second song begins much slower, giving room for Parsons cheeky admittance; “You know our bodies make the right conversation.” The guitar lick in this track is so funky with a great fuzz affect, supplying the song with a lower tone and acting like a bass line. In this song DZ Deathrays show their ability to pace and shape their playing with soft moments amongst the punk reverie. The build at the end of ‘Gebbie Street’ is chock full of attitude and a sexy hook.
What follows is ‘Cops Capacity’, one of the ‘house party’ tracks recorded for the EP. Yep, it is what they say, a song that they’ve recorded from a performance they did at someone’s house. While there may be some doubt if the recording would be any good, the track actually sounds surprising clear. It begins with background chatter where you can audibly hear the voices of the partygoers who have come to watch the band. It adds a unique quality to the EP and stands as a homage to the band’s humble beginnings, starting out because they wanted to perform at house parties.
‘The Party’ is the second live-recorded track that follows in a similar vein. Once again Parson’s guitar sound is brought to the fore but it seems to be at the expense of Simon Ridley’s drums this time. The drumming is great but it seems slightly muffled in this track, mind you, that may be the desired affect.
The last two tracks are remixes of the first two songs on the EP. It is an interesting choice to include these on the EP, but both tracks sound very different to the originals and provide another interpretation.
‘Brutal Tapes’ EP is a great release from the DZ Deathrays, with a diverse compilation of songs and unique sounds. In 7 tracks, there are potential singles, live party tracks and remixes. The band’s style has a distinct punk edge, heard in the wall of noise and wail of the vocals in all these tracks, but the use of ever-evolving guitar effects and solid rythms from the drums allows this band to begin forging their own distinct and layered sound, breaking away from any stereo-types. Who knew two guys could make so much noise?
1. Rad Solar
2. Gebbie Street
3. Cops Capacity (House Party Version)
5. The Party (House Party Version)
6. Gebbie Street (Yacht Club Djs Jager C S Remix)
7. Rad Solar (Surecut Kids Remix)