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Childsaint

Childsaint - Photo by JF Foto
Childsaint – Photo by JF Foto

Delay Delay/Dream Rimmy
The Bird
Friday, September 19, 2014

With the heartrending release of local dark rock four-piece, Childsaint’s debut EP, Sick, set to be launched at The Bird, the group assembled two of Perth’s dream music alumni for a night of astral pop and dark rock to a packed crowd of eager fans.

Shoegaze duo Delay Delay cut through the dull buzz of bar conversation with a steady, sombre guitar intro by Stewart Bank – layering thickly reverbed lines together for opening track, Ulcers. Drummer and vocalist Aedan Sykes added to the compositions with suspending weighted, breathy vocals above Bank’s legato lines.

Song structures focused on swirling movements from soft to loud, with Sykes’ drum parts going from beat-pushing syncopation to simple, heart-pulse rhythms. Bank showcased a developed ear for orchestration, with the music taking natural, logical swells with a barren, arid feel and some organ-style harmonies, though the looping process led to some lines becoming repetitive and dragging on.

Dream Rimmy moved the night from introspective shoegaze to engaging, psychedelic pop rock. Bassist Nick Perkins and drummer George Foster locked down a deep, intuitive rhythm section groove that propelled the sunny guitar work. The bright lead work of Jack Gaby and cosmic vocal harmonies characterised Otherside, while friendly onstage banter broke up the driving, energetic second half of the set. Catchy pop hooks, simple I-V chord movements and the trademark, convulsive abandonment and droning vocals of frontman (and recent Big Splash competition winner) Dean Eyeball had the crowd gripped for the last couple of songs. In The Sunshine finished up the set, a strong, well-crafted pop number, though guitar lines dragged somewhat.

Headline act Childsaint came out with Suicide Soda: melancholy lyrics, haunting vocals and harmonies between Chloe McGrath and Jane Azzopardi that washed listlessly over a dark, triplet-driven guitar melody and achingly slow drums. Stone Roses cover I Wanna Be Adored was a tactical choice for the band, with the classic, feather-light chorus suiting the McGrath/Azzopardi vocal combo well and stylistically similar to their own number, Dessert. The dark, intimate confines of The Bird swayed to plangent tones and sparse, painstaking minimalistic instrumentation, while deep despair-ridden melodies, such as Cold Summer, cut to bone and stained blood-red the stage. The girls themselves were dark and brooding, working well together and strumming out a tight, well-rehearsed set.

As the night settled down to dark ennui and patrons were politely shepherded out into the streetlight Northbridge evening, the discordance of the emotional, heartstring ecclesiam within The Bird and the bright, neon jubilee of Friday night took jarring hold. The crowd dispersed into the night.

SHAUN COWE

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