Reviewed on Saturday November 2
It’s always an exciting thing to see a band live just before they get massive. Judging from the energy generated both onstage and in the audience at The Standard, it seems King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard are in that very sweet spot.
East River were the first of two supports for the show. They played a fine set of sloppy ’60s fuzz pop that was in a similar vein to King Gizzard. Alex Cameron of Seekae’s solo set that followed, however, was one of the most baffling and infuriating live shows I’ve seen in a long time.
Cameron came onstage with slicked back hair and a green suit, recalling mid-’70s Bowie and Bryan Ferry. He played synth-driven, new romantic music, derivative of mid-’70s Bowie and Bryan Ferry. And he carried on like someone with the stature of mid-’70s Bowie or Bryan Ferry, getting angry at his band, the sound guy and the audience for no reason at all. If you didn’t know beforehand, it didn’t take long to realise that it was all to some degree a joke, but one of those annoying, Andy Kaufman-style jokes where the people involved are the only ones who find it funny. So whether taken as music or comedy, it was a waste of time.
If you’re yet to see King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard live, their stage set-up is impressive: two drummers, two basses, two guitars, plus a harmonica/keyboards player. But it isn’t just for show; every instrument adds to a powerful sound that hits you in the gut. Theirs is a style that is trending in indie music at the moment, with Tame Impala, Ty Segall and The Men all mining similar grounds. But King Gizzard jump around styles and tempos so frequently that they have their own unique experience to offer.
I can’t recite the setlist (they’ve released three albums in less than a year, and I’m still catching up), but a highlight was ‘Head On/Pill’, easily their best song at this point. It was a blur of distortion pedals, moshing and strobe lights that was thrilling for its entire 16-minute run time.
So go and see King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard soon, and you can brag to your friends that you saw them “before they were big”. Because they will be big.
BY LEONARDO SILVESTRINI