Don’t you hate it when band names start !-ing all over the shop? Irritating as it is, though, there are a few cases where excessive use of the exclamation mark is well and truly justified, and Die! Die! Die! is definitely one of those rare instances. For a start, their relentless, unsettling sound is every bit as thrilling as their heavily punctuated name suggests, with this second offering stripped right down to the gnarled, bare bones of art punk.
It’s all squeals and yelps, tornado riffs and frantic battered drums – and if that’s not enough for you, it’s emotional, danceable and catchy to boot. “I could never forget her if I tried”, laments the NZ foursome’s singer Andrew Wilson in attacking opener ‘Blinding’, before getting down and dirty with ‘ATTITUD’, the unarguable highlight which, complete with deranged basslines, screamed refrains and a ferocious delivery, is pure unadulterated musical filth (despite the lyrics telling a rather polite tale of taking a ladyfriend to meet the folks). Add to this an unexpected sensitive side – as in the melancholy melodies of ‘Sideways, Here We Come’, ‘Maybe: Definitely’ and woozy heartbreak anthem ‘Whitehorses’ – and you’ve got something rather special from the notoriously unruly bunch. Quite frankly, after just one listen to ‘Promises Promises’, Die! Die! Die! could set fire to our first born and we’d still be staring at them in doe-eyed wonder. Cold showers necessary.