Words by Steve Shelverton
Get your Creep on!
The Zoo was a wild wash with Halloween dress-up party guests – some slightly saturated after revelling in a long-awaited spring downpour in the river city, yet all eager to scale the slippery summit of the perilous Zoo stairs to absorb a 5-band punk premium Spooktacular.
I step into the cavernous venue of the old stage props store to the sound of Cosmic Psychos song Fuckwit City playing, I feel instantly at home. The friendly team on the merch store are busy readying the items with Jamie Timony the frontman of These New South Wales. I have a quick chat with him, he is pretty amped about the show tonight, and glad to be back in Brissie again at this iconic venue.
I check the chalkboard of upcoming gigs like a good little punk school student, (even though the weekly GCL Gig Guide is absolutely mint!) Jebediah 9th November, Great Gable on 11th, The Rions on the 18th . Looks like I’ll be back here again soon.
Bean Magazine kick off the event. A gorgeous geek punk gem – cuter than a box of baby numbats. Infectious, positive and a rich meld of talent. Fire – I guarantee you’ll be singing “Fire, fire FIYOOOHOOHOOOOO!” when you hear it! A sneaky mini guitar solo on the funk-driven Juiceman track from vocalist Henry caused him to ask, “Does anyone have a spare guitar pick?”, only to be presented one by a throng of musos in the audience (bless you Brissie audiences).
The last track Shoes is a tribute to Henry’s two grandfathers shared disdain for shoes from two culturally different perspectives. Chatting with Henry after the set I can’t
help note the heavy influence from Regurgitator; he says “Oh definitely, a lot of people say this” and we agree that the 3 piece find it a complimentary comparison.
I’m eager to subscribe to Bean Magazine, and examine their trajectory in the next two years considering that’s how long they’ve been performing together. Sign me up!
The electro future inspired post-punk duo, Sacred Hearts had the crowd on their toes, with a hypnotic guitar charge and fitting stage persona, complimented by a mystery guest in an inflatable pig costume joining them on stage for the recent track Pig City. The femme fatale presence and skill on show with Glamour Girls was well received and perfectly placed on the Creepshow lineup.
Concrete Surfers are up next. The varied nature of their sound, both with and within each song, had a steely-sticky double helix-like twist in tone, tempo, style and delivery. The misleadingly delicate Never Understood paved the way for a fitting cover tribute to an originator of musical genre boundary crossing; Billy Idol’s- Rebel Yell. The crowd was lubricated and totally enthralled now, and craving more of this sultry stuff!
Miscommunication demonstrated the mailability of this bands sound, urging a desire to hunt them down in the local scene again.
Melbourne duo Sophisticated Dingo capitalises on a broad spectrum of audience appeal, to the now brimming Zoo. They rocked the sweetly synchronised Aus garage punk mode damned well, cutting their own sound, with vocal clarity and a belting groove in blood-stained trade mark Bonds singlets and jeans.
Radio On is akin to a summer BBQ with mates, set to the background of a low-fi FM radio joyfully reverberating to an audience in short shorts and double plugger finery, arms plunging into an esky to grasp a sweet amber nectar to toast and savour the moment – a beer can popping open…Crack!!!! is the sound and feel of Sophisticated Dingo. I had the pleasure to convey this to Jimmy and Lew, while I was dressed as a Sophisticated Dingo myself. They found this analogy suitably fitting, and the costume hilarious.
“Turn down your moaning Stereo, I can’t hear my thoughts or let them glow…and…VCR Tapes are all out on loan.” Apart from loving the repeated references to defunct audio technology, the song VCR is about human connections and maintaining effective communication through effort irl, more relevant than ever in a tech savvy age.
Wasted is upbeat and up-tempo, with a gentle reminder not take what you have for granted. “I don’t want to go outside; in case I miss the writings on the wall inside…” It’s got that tangible sing along qualities that contributes to the magnetic fan factor of Sophisticated Dingo.
The guys get stuck into Been Thinking – a tender ode that had the crowd entranced. It’s a slow feel creeper, another track with a layered stutter in its progression with an anthemic build. It was about this time Lew became entangled with a Halloween prop on the stage. He kept on fighting through!
The cover of Blondies, Heart of Glass is when Jimmy stole the Creepshow. Years in musical theatre have brought street credibility to his evocative vocal range. Dedicated fans proudly wearing the highly sought after (and completely sold out) “JUST A COUPL A SOFT DINGAZ” t-shirts, were aghast. Jaws scraping the floor looking around in disbelief at Jimmy’s unabashedly elevation in pitch, all the while belting the drums – the essence of a light touch of stage drama in this juggle of talents; it
The swoony feels and self-analysis of Head Talk sounds like the loveless ballad of a surfing cowboy, destined to cry into their beer for eternity, “What the fuck is wrong with meeeeeeee????” Tell me Jimmy and Lew! Tell me!!! (while we quietly sob).
Morning View shifts up a gear, it bangs harder than slapping a meat pie into an oncoming bus window. I love the textured layered builds between the verses, the fatty space between Lewy’s crooning “ooooow awoooo!”, and the punk fury invited in after Jimmy taps his cymbal at the halfway point.
The lads ended on Day in the Life a vibrant song to keep the crowd primed, and thirsty for the multi-talented punk immortals to come.
Trying to do a review of These New South Wales (TNSW) without thinking of their TV show and giggling, is a mission, perhaps it’s best if I let Wart explain it: “I think they’re a bit of a smart band, they actually think about stuff, rather than just blurting it out, they blurt, as well, which is good, because people need to be blurted at!”
Wart – TNSW fan (S01 E02)
The accolades are a plenty for this DIY to the death 4-piece punk high commission consisting of: Jamie Timony (vocals) Todd Andrews (Guitar) Will Shepherd (Bass) and Frank Sweet, son of Australian TV Star Gary Sweet on Drums.
Bending at the Knee Starting the proceedings and setting the mood with a post wave vibe sweeping the crowd, into more intense actions of mosh formations. Jamie gave respect to the combined acts joining them on Creepshow, the venue and staff of The Zoo, and conveyed the genuine pleasures of breathing in “That sweet, sweet, sweet QLD Air again.”
The racing Cholesterol Heart off the 2017 Album ‘You Work For Us’ sent the mosh into a cyclonic frenzy, Jamie interacting with “Lots of love from These New South Wales and God bless Ya!” grabbing hands in the crowd and embracing the love. Back To You has the warm purring understated sound of a V12 that’s just crying to have the pedal
applied to the floor. It gets started in the best rhythm duel in in the catalogue, well placed on the set list to the precede the punchy Meat Hook. with a metronome like bass feed, leading to an assault style guitar bursts, perfectly punctuated with symbol crashes makes me love this track, with the story like lyrics and not just for the reference to a ”raw prawn”. Oof so good!
Anaphylaxis is a mosh agitator, “…we fuck, stab, marry, kiss and kill each other!” double the length of the previous song, teasing more with “Adrenalin…. AHHHH!!!”
Nerve 2 Reverse is a vibrant throwback to early brit punk or the Ramones era, frenetic and anthemic. I think I got lost in another moment as I teetered on the edge of a surging mosh.
Rotten Sun has that familiar gallop of guitar, bass and drums pitted against Jamie’s rhythmic storytelling, had some heavy audience interaction, with the catchy “Bah, Bahbah, bah bah” ending on the last line – “and that’ll never change.” Acting as a segway to the final track of the setlist; the very popular Changes. The authenticity of Jamie’s voice is pure punk bliss to my ears, still fresh from the triple j Like a Version in April this year, showcasing the bands breadth of talents, particularly Todd’s opportunity to give a solo component of this masterpiece.
In crypt like Creepshow style was a high-energy midnight set from Square. That new wave romantic style Into Me with opening lyrics, “There’s a a party going on inside my head, there’s too many seats there…” demands your attention. This is followed by the stirring jam fusion of James’s Love Song (Interlude) with a heavy lean to their dedicated 80s Brit sound. Repetition was worth staying up to turn into a pumpkin for.
Creepshow was an excellent arrangement of talent, showcasing some of Australia’s leading edge punk purebreds. The venue is a sweet morsel of acoustic pleasure, a comfortable safe place with charming staff. What a night!
See you at Creepshow ‘24!
Thanks to Tiny Minds Agency