Different Beings Being Different
DOMESTIC LA LA
Hi, my name is Matt, and before landing this cush job where I get paid to write about my favourite bands, my day-to-day involved stacking bricks, trawling mud over scaffolds and hammering planks as a tradie. The job was as draining on my soul as it was on my energy, and though blasting music helped the days melt by, Triple M never quite took the edge off. I yearned for an album that would pump me full of adrenaline; an album soaked in grime and spilt VB, that held artistic weight but was rough enough around the edges that it never felt inauthentic. This – the debut full-length from Adelaidian pubcore pulverisers West Thebarton (nee. Brothel Party) – is that very album.
On it, the septet make 40 minutes feel like ten, every cut outright impossibly massive. Ray Dalfsen puts the ‘amp’ in ‘champ’, his vocals loud and livid over a battlefield of jagged punk hooks. The four‑member axe attack muster some truly skull‑shattering fretwork throughout; there’s no shortage of crash-hot riffs to strain your ears with, but never for a second is it overbearing. Every member has their place doling noise into the mix, from Caitlin Thomas and Brian Bolado’s jittery percussion to Nick Horvat’s gurgling bass.
Across a tight 11 tracks, the band wield a sharp balance of SoCal punk rock and scorching Australiana. Lead single “Moving Out” tears through the gates with a rhythm as infectious as its verses are relatable, and if your head doesn’t thrash on instinct when the two‑minute thrasher anthem “Basic” kicks in, you might need to consult your local GP. But while such fierce and fiery pit calls definitely pad the album, it’s not without a tinge of personality. “Bible Camp” is sheer elation, it cutesy lyrics driven into the stratosphere with a crunchy, roaring twang. The LP culminates in “Set It Straight”, a Bon Jovian little jam that shines with a sparkling rhythmic undertone – if it doesn’t etch its way into the echelon of Australian classics, this country has no goddamn hope for its musical future.
Okay, so that last sentence might be a tiny bit of a stretch. The point is, West Thebarton have absolutely crushed it with Different Beings Being Different – they’ve crushed it so hard that ‘it’ no longer exists in solid form, a toxic powder all that’s left when their searing, screeching chaos comes to a halt.
Review by Matt Doria