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Live Review: BED BY NINE – The Zoo

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Words by Lewd Scoff

“Go and review a rock show” the boss  said. “Oh I’d forgotten all about rock” farted your reviewing hero, Lewd Scoff.

So, armed with the presumption that Rock was at least a little under the weather, I headed to The Zoo in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley, where I found a decent crowd of leather clad (in spirit) individuals who are still replacing pentagrams with pentatonics, blood for beers and bourbon, and 666’s for sick, sick, sickest riffs. 

Lunchtime adequately performed their unique version of lofi-indie core to a modest Sunday afternoon crowd, all things considering (250 audience limit, due to ongoing dramas out of our control). Songwriting is the focus here, with a Tegan and Sara meet the Pixies vibe. Watch these musos. They gonna take over this town.

June Cartel do what they do to marvellous effect. Equal parts math, emo, atmosphere and nu- psych, they are always an interesting listen, and today is no exception. Record some content fuck ya’s !!!!!!

Rockers, The Silencio, reminded me of many things visually, but mainly old school Brisbane 3 piece Not From There, due to the singer looking like Abruzzi from prison break. Yeah, I’m racist against white male Europeans. What of it? They all look the same. But seriously, they have the energy, and use it to full purpose and reason. Was great hearing the bass absolutely bottom out as per Brisbane venues standard. A surprise lack of guitar in the mix for a rock show, their last song was their new single, and it had elements of hardcore, rock, and punk. 

As long as the bass player had a bright print shirt and a fedora on, all is well. 

Back in my day, a gig was an event, and would never have Mister Mister playing in-between sets. I mean, classic track, but I don’t know, maybe play some local original music in-between sets… 

As the sound guys wrap up some pretty serious conversation with the musicians on stage (face the crowd, turn the amps on etc), it’ll be that classic line up of short haired drummer, long haired guitarist, bassist who looks lost without a hacky sack and quirky female vocalist in the form of Atomic Beau Project. But hang on. Gotta clear the stage, dip the lights and…… make the crowd wait. Yay jigs.

If this is the standard, then maybe we should all leave and come back next week for the main act.

Meanwhile, in the main room, kids, always bring a second guitar to gigs, so your missus can carry it through the crowd for you.  Rock 101 right there.

So, Atomic Beau Project kick in great with some lovely dropped C tuning.  (It’s like drop D but another tone lower. 3 tones off from the brown note) Wow. Great modern groove, double kick, samples that enhance, and a killer guitar tone. Maybe just lacking some vocal hooks. If the singer sells the story, then everything here is for free. 

And why don’t bands say who they are in-between every fucking song? A gig is a marketing tool 1st, and art 2nd. Sell yourselves. You’re good enough to have way more ego present on stage.  It is 2021 after all.  Sound advice for any band of any genre. Rock’s only dead because its players don’t adapt to the new market.  Straight up. 

Have these humans found their lane?

It seems so. It might only be their 4th gig, but check them out on the socials and streams, as they have content that rocks.

Mass Sky Raid prove they play emotional modern rock before we’ve even heard them strike a palm muted string then catch it. Whoever is supplying these bands with plain black Bonds shirts, should hook me up with some stocks. I’ll be rich bitch !!!!

I’m expecting big things from this band within the live setting, if their recorded work is anything to go by.  Hailing from the Gold Coast, the lads are here to promote their latest single, Arrows. And as if I was disappointed. Singer Adam Lomas was in fine form. Very hard source material did find him pitchy occasionally, but stage presence from all involved made up for that. 

This is melodic based emotional music that walks that fine line between masculine and effeminate hard rock. Dead Letter Core as it were, without the bedwetting. The aforementioned single suffered from the lack of a 2nd guitarist, to help punch the djent through.  Still, all of it was enough to get the ladies in the crowd up and dancing.  Yay alcohol
and primal beats.  The song Closer was another set highlight.  And it wasn’t until the last song that the snare drum didn’t sound like an Ikea snare (hitting on flat pack with an Allen key)

And the moment has finally arrived.  I’ll give them this, they’ve stuck at it for years.  Fuck, even I’ve supported Smoking Martha!!!!

Note to younger bands, an air of mystery goes a long way.  We don’t see the main acts singer until their set starts, and Jesus, do they sound super and look the part.  True rock stars

Lead singer Tasha, finally graces the stage full of pout and swagger and gives us a fantastic rendition of Shake Me Awake, in all its stop/start glory. The crowd is bopping in their chairs (strange times) as the Smokers launch into Only Love, a song that’s as infectious as it is hook laden. What a fucking great band. It’s classic rock by those grown up on all good music.

And finally a drummer is smashing the drums like they insulted him. 

“Let’s hear a newy hey?”

Good Girls delivers.  It’s good to see a band progressing as they continue to put out new content.  Driving protopunk with a slamming four to the floor feel meets a banshee obsessed with catching the listeners ear.

The sexy slinkiness of So Lonely from 2017′ L.P In Deep, has moments of Avenged Sevenfold, and is definitely the set highlight for this ageing metaller. 

Tasha’s vocals are on display again in the intro to It’s A Lie. The band knows how to avoid riff soup, by making the killer guitar line highlight this track’s chorus, leaving space for a sick verse run that has the crowd finally out of their seats.  She may be screaming ‘it’s a lie’, but I swear it’s all the truth. And it will set your free (sic).

The song Ghost belongs to drummer Jordy. If you know you know.  Wild And Free proves that this is local music at an international level. Everyone involved is currently on fire and show no signs of cooling down.

A classic from their back catalogue, Say You’re Mine is exposed as a drop D rumbler due its ‘blink and you’ll miss it’ Israels Son intro by bassist, Matty.  A great track that holds up in today’s musical climate.

And it’s proper promo time. Managers on alert, their playing the new single, Liquid Sunshine. Gotta admit, they know how to write a really good rock song.  Do they, or have they ever played this band  on JJJ? Bet they haven’t. I’ll take any chance to say ‘fuck the Js’. You know this.

And just like that, it’s last song time.  Time flies when your rocking out, I guess.

In the Shadows commands our attention like every other note performed by these stalwarts of the Brisbane rock scene.
Here’s to more of these Bed By Nine shows, another triumph by the promoters.

Get out and see your local bands, ya muppets. Before they say, ‘fuck it’, and there’s no more local bands.

Just Tik Tok ☹

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