Friday, June 26, 2009
Amongst the messy history of Australian Rock and Roll it’s rare to find a band who get to the point and nail that point all the way the fuck home as convincingly as The Dacios; clarity, volume, ferocity, a hard-earned swagger and a complete absence of posing or conforming.
If The Dacios did give a shit about ‘making it’ or proving something they wouldn’t have waited four years to make this 7-track album, despite the rousing and numerous gigs that have built them a small following around Melbourne. Not to mention the core members’ previous incarnation in the Bikinikill-upstaging Little Ugly Girls. The irony here is that it’s taken the band this long to sound this fresh and effortless but they haven’t been wasting time; they’ve been distilling.
Monkeys Blood finds The Dacios sounding as if a young Jason Spaceman had drunk beer instead of taken drugs, replaced an orchestra with a pissed-off Patti Smith and got to the point. If the point of rock is riff and attitude, then Monkey’s Blood steamrolls any competitors, finding the core of both and bringing it to you at a volume and brevity that’s formidable. Yes Linda J howls, but she howls lyrics like “I’ll make you shake and you shiver / Gonna see you in hell / Said the girl in the mirror” as well as building characters and stories like opening track Liberty’s Lovers, which indicate a poet’s attention to detail.
The sureness of the band’s playing and its execution of these songs is likely to be inspiring envy in lesser bands that wouldn’t want to know it takes fraternal bonds and a lot of rehearsals to sound this good. It’s hard to overstate the impact of Linda J’s vocals, their clarity, depth and versatility inherent in the quieter parts as much as outbursts like Grey Machine and Monica.
Being a killer album by a bunch of promo-shy Tasmanians it’s no surprise to find The Nation Blue’s Tom Lyngcoln pushing this behemoth of a band to your attention via his Solar/Sonar label. Seven tracks may seem a poor payoff for this long playing pubs and jamming, but when it’s these seven songs, you can forgive them for anything. In a fair world, The Dacios would be opening for another fraternal riff machine, AC/DC.
By taking that apostrophe out of the title, you get more blood. Less is more.