Thee Oh Sees – Mojos Bar – 23/01/16

Photo: Mason Devine

Photo: Mason Devine

Words: Jasmine Uitermark-Thaung

Well known for its status as the local haunt for up and coming musicians, Saturday night Mojos Bar played host to Californian rock band, Thee Oh Sees.

The sweltering atmosphere was electric if you could wade through the fog of smoke that always seems to accompany the Mojos courtyard and its ever present good vibes.

With a line-up that boasted the eclectic fuzz of DJ Shiny Joe Ryan in between acts, Hideous Sun Demon were the ones to watch on stage. Guitars in tow, the grunge clad group pumped out their punchy riff driven tunes whilst punters in the mosh worshipped at their feet, screaming out lyrics till their voices were hoarse.

Tamer tracks like Neon Sound continued to take no prisoners but it was Hideous Sun Demon's latest release Cul-De-Sac and fan favourite Bricklover which really evoked the last strains of energy the crowd possessed. Honestly I have no idea how frontman (and quite literally the King of facial expressions), Vincent Buchanan didn't attempt to take a post set nap. 

Taking the set break to recover outside, everyone had their ears tuned for the tell-tale heavy hits of drums. Mojos was so packed the communal courtyard had us seeking floor space to rest our legs for another rock onslaught.

When the first riffs from Thee Oh Sees began to echo out into the courtyard, punters were on their feet and scooting inside through their drunken haze quicker than you could blink. The mosh quickly turned into a hot mess as the band launched into their second song The Dream. Welcoming the sounds of frontman John Dwyer’s nasally falsetto, the crowd were soon caught up in the thud of the double drums, wielding power heavy enough to replace punters heartbeats as the mosh temperature soared dangerously on the floor I now like to fondly dub ‘the sweatbox’.

With the band’s member equation differing from their last Aussie tour, I caught myself missing the keys and varied tone, Brigid Dawson brought to the Californian crew. She was often deemed “the silver lining” when it came to the group’s live shows, offering a contrast to Dwyer’s raw grit.

Looking around mid-set at the at-capacity crowd it was a little surreal, the combination of booze and an elbow to the face will do that to you. As punters surfed the wave of energy that ran off the crowds fingers, a few stage dive mishaps occurred against the impressive front Thee Oh Sees put up with their dual drumming attack but as a friend recently mentioned…

You know you’ve been to an incredible gig when you wanna shave all your hair off afterwards…
— Crystal Dee