DZ Deathrays

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DZ Deathrays
Origin Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Genres Dance punk, pop rock, thrash metal
Years active 2010-present
Labels I Oh You, Infectious
Members Shane Parsons
Simon Ridley

DZ Deathrays (previously DZ)[1] is an Australian thrash pop duo from Brisbane, Queensland. Made up of Shane Parsons (vocals/guitar) and Simon Ridley (drums),[2] they put out two EPs before releasing their debut album, Bloodstreams, in April 2012.[3] The album went on to win the Best Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Album award at the 2012 ARIA Awards.[4]

History[edit]

Parsons and Ridley, both from Bundaberg, Queensland, Australia,[5] were initially the founding members of Brisbane band Velociraptor, and continue to play with the group.[6] Following the formation of DZ Deathrays, the band's first performances occurred at Brisbane house parties.[7] The debut recording for the band was an EP, titled Ruined My Life, that was released in 2009 and its entire content was recorded live at a house party.[8]

DZ Deathrays released their debut album, Bloodstreams, in mid-2012 and received praise from Pitchfork Media, with reviewer Laura Snapes writing that the album is "more than worth going deaf to."[9] The album was co-produced by electro artist Richard Pike and was recorded in Queensland during a two-week period. It was released in the UK in May 2012 on the Hassle label and NME reviewer Kelly Murray explained: "This album has the potential to make your little sister want to shave her head and invest in mock leather hotpants. It’s the penned seduction of a weekend of irresponsibility and a Monday full of inferior excuses."[8]

The band's second album was recorded with producer Burke Reid at the Grove Studios complex, located adjacent to the Strickland Forest, north of Sydney, Australia,[10] in January 2014.[11][12] The band recorded with Reid for a two-week period—a 9 January Facebook post from the band read: "Producer Burke Reid tinkering away at about 3am. Sounding brutal."[13] The band's press release for the album states that the recording is a "a rich, deep collection of sounds, textures and arrangements".[14]

In early April 2014, the band signed with the Infectious Records music company for the release of Black Rat in the United Kingdom (UK). The band toured the UK during April 2014, appearing at the Liverpool Sound City event, prior to the UK release of the album in August 2014.[15] The duo released their second studio album Black Rat in both Australia and the United States (US) in May 2014.[16]

The band's press release for the album states that the recording is a "a rich, deep collection of sounds, textures and arrangements".[16] In the promotional material that accompanied review copies of the album, Parsons described the album as "definitely a night-time record. After 9pm; that's where it finds its place."[17]

In early May 2014, writing for the Australian newspaper, music journalist Andrew McMillen awarded Black Rat 3.5 stars out of a possible 5. McMillen describes Bloodstreams as comparatively juvenile alongside Black Rat, and writes that the more mature sound better suits the duo, as they move beyond their "trash party" origins. McMillen further praises the album's 11 songs as a "significant step forward" and concludes: "... it's [Black Rat] the sound of a confident band torn between its populist, party-friendly beginnings and a new-found ability to embrace glimpses of beauty amid the sonic destruction."[17]

Touring[edit]

DZ Deathrays have toured throughout over 15 countries, including Australia, the UK, the USA and Canada.[18] In the promotional material for the band's second album, Parsons explained that the band had spent the preceding two years drinking and touring, a period in which the songs for Black Rat were created.[17]

To promote Bloodstreams, the DZ Deathrays performed at festivals such as the Reading and Leeds Festivals (UK), the A Perfect Day Festival (Villafranca di Verona, Italy[19]), Splendour in the Grass (Australia) and St Jerome's Laneway Festival (Australia), and headlined the NME stage at The Great Escape Festival, held in Brighton and Hove, UK.[20] The band's performance at the US South by Southwest (SXSW) event in Austin, Texas[21] was shortened, due to the extreme volume of their music. Musical touring partners include Blood Red Shoes, TRUST, Foo Fighters and Unknown Mortal Orchestra.[22]

Awards[edit]

They won Best Independent Hard Rock album at the 2012 Independent Music Awards[23] and Best Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Album at the 2012 ARIA Awards,[4] winning over bands such as Frenzal Rhomb and Buried in Verona for the latter award.[24] The band was completing a European tour when the ARIA ceremony occurred, but in response, Ridley wrote: “this award only means something because we all did it as friends instead of business partners. Looking forward to getting back and having some well-deserved congratulatory drinks together”, while Parsons stated, “the whole thing is pretty unexpected which makes it a nicer surprise.”[22]

Influences[edit]

In April 2014, Ridley identified seven albums that "changed his life" for the Australian "Tone Deaf" music website. Included in the list are Smash by The Offspring, which was not only the first album that Ridley owned, but "also the first album with swearing on it"; The Bronx's first self-titled album, "a psych up album for nights when I’m too tired but need to party"; Air's Moon Safari, which is an album that was listened to after Ridley would "come home from work every day" and "melt into the couch"—he stated that he now listens to the album on a weekly basis; and Rust In Peace by Megadeth, praised by Ridley for being "Metal how it should be!"[25]

Band members[edit]

  • Shane Parsons
  • Simon Ridley

Discography[edit]

  • Ruined My Life EP (2009) [26]
  • Brutal Tapes EP (2011) - I Oh You[27]
  • No Sleep EP[18]
  • Bloodstreams (2012) - I Oh You[28][29]
  • Black Rat (2014) - I OH YOU

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Cahill, Mikey (7 April 2011), "Rock City", Herald-Sun 
  2. ^ Shepherd, Fiona (17 May 2012), "Review : DZ Deathrays", The Scotsman 
  3. ^ Seidler, Jonno (7 April 2012), "Deathrays take aim at a hit with debut album", The Gold Coast Bulletin 
  4. ^ a b "Aria for Bundy originated band DZ Deathrays", News Mail, 30 Nov 2012 
  5. ^ "Hard journey to the very top", The Courier-Mail, 30 November 2012 
  6. ^ Mengel, Noel (6 September 2012), "It dozen get any better than this", The Courier-Mail 
  7. ^ Mengel, Noel (11 August 2012), "Clash of the albums", The Courier-Mail 
  8. ^ a b Kelly Murray (8 May 2012). "DZ Deathrays - 'Bloodstreams'". NME. IPC Media Entertainment Network. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  9. ^ Laura Snapes (20 June 2012). "DZ Deathrays". Pitchfork. Pitchfork Media. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  10. ^ "The Property". The Grove Studios. The Grove Studios. 2014. Retrieved 31 March 2014. 
  11. ^ "January 2". DZ Deathrays on Facebook. Facebook. 8 January 2014. Retrieved 31 March 2014. "Our home for the next 2 weeks. #album2" 
  12. ^ Scott Armstrong (24 February 2014). "DZ DEATHRAYS ANNOUNCE SOPHOMORE RECORD ‘BLACK RAT’". I Oh You. I Oh You. Retrieved 31 March 2014. 
  13. ^ "9 January". DZ Deathrays on Facebook. Facebook. 9 January 2014. Retrieved 31 March 2014. 
  14. ^ Tom Mann (5 March 2014). "DZ Deathrays launch ‘Black Rat’ album with tour in May". Faster Louder. Faster Louder Pty Ltd. Retrieved 31 March 2014. 
  15. ^ Jamie Milton (16 April 2014). "DZ Deathrays Sign To Infectious For New ‘Black Rat’ Album". DIY. DIY. Retrieved 17 April 2014. 
  16. ^ a b Tom Mann (5 March 2014). "DZ Deathrays launch ‘Black Rat’ album with tour in May". Faster Louder. Faster Louder Pty Ltd. Retrieved 31 March 2014. 
  17. ^ a b c Andrew McMillen (May 2014). "'Black Rat', the second album by Brisbane rock duo @DZDEATHRAYS, reviewed in The @Australian today". Andrew McMillen on Twitter. Twitter. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  18. ^ a b Kloke, Joshua, "DZ Deathrays", Beat Magazine 
  19. ^ "A Perfect Day Festival (Italy)". Festival Database. Festival Database. 1 September 2014. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  20. ^ Petridis, Alexis (15 May 2011). "The Great Escape festival – review". The Guardian. Retrieved 13 May 2013. "The Great Escape's USP is new music. So for the real spirit of things, you are best off haunting the smaller venues." 
  21. ^ "City holds final SXSW public input meeting". KVUE News. 13 May 2014. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  22. ^ a b "DZ Deathrays Win ARIA Award". AMH Network. AMH Network. 30 November 2012. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  23. ^ "Hard win for Deathrays", MX (Brisbane), 17 October 2012 
  24. ^ "ARIA AWARDS / 2012 BEST HARD ROCK / HEAVY METAL ALBUM". Aria Awards. Australian Recording Industry Association. 2013. Retrieved 13 November 2013. 
  25. ^ Lucy Dayman (29 April 2014). "7 Albums That Changed DZ Deathrays’ Lives". Tone Deaf. Tone Deaf. Retrieved 29 April 2014. 
  26. ^ DZ Deathrays - Bandcamp, 11 September 2009 
  27. ^ Cahill, Mikey (23 June 2011), "Rock City", Herald-Sun 
  28. ^ Howe, Dave Ruby (11 August 2012), "Thrash", Canberra Times 
  29. ^ Seidler, Jonno (1 June 2012), "Bloodstreams", The Sydney Morning Herald 

External links[edit]