DZ Deathrays – Positive Rising: Part 2 (Album Review)

DZ DeathraysPositive Rising: Part 2
Released: July 9th, 2021

Line up:

Shane Parsons // Vocals/Guitar
Lachlan Ewbank // Vocals/Guitar
Simon Ridley // Drums



DZ Deathrays caused a bit of a stir at SXSW in 2012 when they were told to stop playing at their show because they were too loud. That’s the kind of story that makes me want to get into a band. Too loud? These guys had to be awesome. Plus they were from Brisbane and if I am anything, I am parochial. I will always try to give any Brisbane band the time of day. My hometown is a city with a rich musical history, producing some of the best bands to come out of this country (just read Andrew Stafford’s excellent book, “Pig City: from the Saints to Savage Garden” about Brisbane’s musical legacy.

See, I feel that where a band comes from, forges their identity and sound. Like Violent Soho are so Brisbane, they couldn’t come from anywhere else.

DZ Deathrays, to my great satisfaction, sound like a band ready to conquer the world with a ragged yet melodic sound clearly influenced by the likes of Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr., Buffalo Tom, Nirvana and Steve Albini. Over a series of albums they have crafted their sound from fuzzy guitar pop to something epic.

Positive Rising: Part 2 is the sequel album to the already excellent 2019 release (our review here). To tell the world that they were releasing two albums is ambitious. It generally means that the band has too much material and they want to release all of it. Face it, GNR’s Use Your Illusion I & II is chock full of filler, however DZ Deathrays have pulled this one off. PRP2 is an outstanding release.

This album takes the ideas from the first album and builds upon it, creating an epic release that can be listened to in 1 sitting. The songs are filled with hooks that just grab you with the distorted guitars turned up to 11 and tuned down to create a heavy sound. The production on this album is huge, and for a band that do not have a bass, well, it doesn’t matter as the mix is full. Positive Rising: Part 2 jumps out of the speakers. DZ understand melody and songwriting which stand out amidst all the noisy guitars. And it’s listening to albums like this that make me realise the pleasure that reviewing albums can bring. To talk about something truly great and to share it with people is a privilege.

PRP2 made this old bloke feel young. It made me want to turn it up and jump around my office smashing things up (but then picking everything up and putting it back together and regretting it later). I could talk about the songs, but here’s the thing, there’s not a bad song on this record. They all rock. I can’t pick a favourite. As I’m writing this, I’m listening to ‘Kerosene‘ which is the latest single and I love it. It pops with an energy that makes me love rock ‘n’ roll. It’s followed up with ‘Fired Up‘ which is just sublime with a chorus that doesn’t give up. These guys just get it.

DZ Deathrays have gone beyond the noise and energy (which was excellent) that they had from the start and have created something truly epic, memorable and monumental. If there is any justice in this world, they should be huge.

This is an early contender for album of the year for me.

DZ Deathrays – Positive Rising: Part 2 tracklist:

1. Skeleton Key
2. Fear The Anchor (feat. Ecca Vandal)
3. All Or Nothing
4. Kerosene
5. Fired Up
6. Riff City
7. Make Yourself Mad
8. Golden Retriever
9. Swept Up
10. Run The Red
11. Positive Rising

Rating 10/10
Positive Rising: Part 2 is out tomorrow. Pre-order here
Review by Dan Brixey