Jack Rabbit Slims, Perth WA
January 20th, 2017
Supports – Daemon Pyre, Depravity, Absent Hearts & Old Devil
With all the wonderful international tours that come to town, sometimes we undervalue the local talent in this town. We took it amongst ourselves to check out a resume of Western Aussie metal bands at Jack Rabbit Slims on a fine Friday night, headlined by the well-renowned Sanzu, who we knew we had to check out again after their stellar performance last year, supporting Deafheaven.
Locals Old Devil opened the proceedings for the evening, playing to handful of keen head-bangers. The Perth group delivered a unique sound with tuning as low as it goes, and an impressive vocal range from the front man that stretched from a pop-punk-esque clean-feel all the way to a deep deathly and raspy roar.
Up next were a band that we’ve certainly been keeping tabs on after also seeing them support some highly regarded international tours in 2016. Absent Hearts bravely sandwiched themselves between a couple very heavy bands, and they did it well. The technical outfit executed an ambient instrumental set that accentuated the experimental philosophy the band are clearly exploring. The progressive sound was well-matched with the collective smiles on-stage as they ripped through an unreleased EP with ease. Despite a humorous broken stool incident, the band comfortably engaged with the crowd, who appreciated something quite different emerging in the Perth scene.
The Absent Hearts’ front man’s brother fronted the next band on-stage, leaving us ask whether the parents are extremely proud or well, just really hopeful for the musicians if they don’t appreciate the devil’s music. Either way, we were very into it! Depravity provided the growing crowd with some good old traditional death metal, and my god it was bloody delightful. Sleeveless black tees stood across the stage with long hair windmilling consistently throughout the set. Grimacing with metallic satisfaction, the band delivered a strong aesthetic, with tight production that reverberated across the venue. With deep riffs and an ongoing energetic attitude, the band would certainly have some great support opportunities with international tours in 2017.
As astoundingly fresh as the Perth bands had been, Sanzu decided to bring some of their east coast friends with them too, namely Daemon Pyre. The Sydney-siders have been on the scene for a couple of years now, as we can assure that they deliver a ferociously disgusting sound – and of course we mean that in a good way. The band could be described as a cross-over of deathcore/metal with some thrash elements thrown in as well. The impressively long set included melodic section between the melt-your-face-off machine-gun riffs. With a satanic feel, the band drew in a decent crowd for a local show and consistently stuck out an aggressively tight and punchy set, priming punters for the headliners quite well.
The concept of these support acts are to give some value to the ticket that is purchased, but it also has a purpose to warm up the crowd. Well four bands later, and it was sweaty – we were ready to roll with the show-stoppers. Sanzu didn’t mess around and launched on stage to a well-filled venue and delivered yet another beautiful set. The production sound was supreme, the growls were piercing, yet demonic. The retching roars were spine-tingling. The band’s cadence of instrumentation was flawless. Sanzu have truly perfected their live delivery, complementing their finely recorded studio album ‘Heavy Over the Home’. The music was the furthest thing from generic. Having already supported a number of artists in 2016, it is clear that Sanzu have a huge future ahead of them, and we reckon they would be just the right opening act for Meshuggah in a couple of months – we’re calling it first!
Check out the photo gallery by Jerika Faithfull here: