Brant Bjork Live at The Zoo


Brant Bjork, Hazards of Swimming Naked, Galapogos - The Zoo, Friday 23 May 2014

Outnumbered but not outgunned, the bassist and drummer of Galapogos pound through an impressive 2 minute intro. Joined by their 6-string allies and the sub-spoken word presence of Dan Newton, their carefully constructed expressions are artistically channelled but the messages are slightly lost in sound. This solid performance, gratifying.

A percussion mallet gently teases the alloys on Gareth Rigdon’s Gibson before a progressive drop into oblivion from Hazards of Swimming Naked. With symbols high and a rocking bass underlay, this instrumental 5 piece ride the wave to deliver meticulous delayed notes over the tremor of rolling drums. The set quiet times speaking of DJ Shadow and the importance of music in education. The four strings of Cameron Diery swim through the brain, falling in line with his 5 band mates to hit a phenomenal crescendo of musical accomplishment.

His own guitar tech, Brant Bjork gets the levels right. Stepping up to the plate, ‘Low Desert Punk’ kicks of proceedings in full Cali style. “I’m gonna drop into your palace and I’m gonna be your slave” lyrically flowing over an audience of hustlers and shakers. The drummer is on point, hitting harder than his skins can take. ‘Let The Truth Be Known’, ‘Too Many Chiefs’ and ‘I Miss My Chick’ unleash the blues running through Bjork’s veins. His lips speaking to each heel tapping riff. The bassist is thundering through, playing a funk style, effortlessly creeping up the neck of his guitar and through the human spine. Friendly heckling from the audience gets Bjork “Excited” to lead into the sultry rock intro of ‘Freaks of Nature.’ The party takes a step back to appreciate his next move, a finale of ‘The Future of Rock (We Got It)’ and with that, there is no doubt.

Kenada Quinlan