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Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Mermaidens - Bennessere Studio - Dunedin - 19 August 2017

Had been keen to get back down to Dunedin for some time for another record shopping expedition and the wife was also keen to head down for the weekend to check out some of the multitude of large secondhand book stores down there, as well as doing the Cadbury tour while there.
 Arrived in town lunchtime Friday and visited a couple of required shops before booking in to our accommodation. Saturday was much of the same after the Cadbury tour with us having a busy day before tea and back to the accommodation. The wife was feeling a bit under the weather by this time, had apparently picked up a bit of a bug during the day so decided to go to bed early.
 I knew The Mermaidens had played Christchurch on Friday night and with Mrs Roddus drifting off to sleep, I decided I would take the opportunity to go check out this band on their Debut album release tour. I had actually listened to their record on Bandcamp a few days before and liked enough of what I heard.
 The gig was advertised door opening at 8pm, so I found a park near the Octagon and walked around to the venue to find a sign on the sidewalk stating that doors wouldn't open till 9pm. Headed over to The Dog With Two Tails cafe for a sit down and a coffee to find that they actually had some live music happening there so filled in the time watching this duo playing bass and ukulele and letting rip with some interesting sounds.
  The Mermaidens gig was on the fifth floor of an old building on Princess St, in a small room with a wooden floor and large glass wall and partial glass roof, there was no stage, with the bands gear just set up on the floor at one end of the room, it was an intimate space and the young folks of Dunedin filled the place pretty full.
  There were three band playing on this evening, the first being a very young local Dunedin band apparently described as a kind of surf band. Koizilla, I thought were a lot more than that, starting off their set with a jangly guitar intro to their first song before the bass and drums kicked in with a very impressive and powerful groove that really got my attention straight off the bat. This three piece had some awesome clout and great songs with the bass player and the awesome bass lines he played knocking my sox off. What an impressive little band and the drummer also impressed as he kept time so well with the bass player even though he was actually a stand in for the sick regular drummer.
 The second band was called Earth Tongue and actually consisted of the Singer/Guitarist from the Mermaidens with just a drummer. They proceeded to make a pretty dark noise that had an almost Swans like feel and a touch of a black metal vibe, although not quite that heavy. The Drummer did quite a bit of the singing which was actually more screaming but I thought their set really interesting and was pretty impressed.
  And so finally Mermaidens kick off their set, mostly playing the songs on their new album and overall playing a pretty enjoyable set. I was getting tired and to be honest lost interest a bit in what they played, it all sort of blurred together a bit. Their music is a good blend of slightly more adventurous indie rock and they played well but after the other bands I wasn't quite so won over. I did pick up their record though and on first listen it is a really good album.

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