bad-sav_coloured up

Bad Sav are a three piece band from Dunedin. More correctly they are from Port Chalmers, a small decrepit port town on the harbour 15 minutes drive north of Dunedin City.

It’s a place that always reminds me of ‘Twin Peaks’ for some reason. Maybe it’s the people. Maybe it’s the laid back weirdness vibe going on. Lots of bars, maroon velvet curtains, odd people eyeing you up strange, familiar faces & good friends & that oversized container crane machinery at the port towering incongruously over the 19th century main street stone buildings like some mechanical praying mantis family. Oh & damn fine coffee too at The Port Royale Café on the main street.

Bad Sav have a laid back weirdness vibe of their own going on. So Port Chalmers is a perfect place for Bad Sav to call home. Port Chalmers also has my ‘home-away-from-home’ – Chick’s Hotel – where all three members of Bad Sav either reside or work these days.

Bad Sav has been around as a band for a few years now, but always seemed a bit half-hearted, jokey & unfocused until the last 6 months. Last year they morphed from a kind of noisy grunge-scuzz outfit into a noisy post-punk/ shoegaze doom pop trio. And they are very good indeed.

“Buy Something New” may only be three chords but those chords carry the weight of society & its consumerist mantras upon their shoulders: “Buy something new/ To replace something new”. Sometimes simple repetition is all you need. This builds and twists and sighs and rages beautifully over 3 and a half minutes. If you buy something new today it should be this:

Their set is full of big churning masterpieces built on a weighty foundation of propulsive New Order-esque bass lines from Lucinda King (also in electronica goth-pop trio Death & The Maiden) and layered with cathedral-sized guitar sound walls from Hope Robertson (Birdation, Kilmore Girls & Snapper drummer, formerly guitarist of The Doyleys & Zan Batman Circus) and pushed along by Mike McLeod’s drumming (The Shifting Sands). They played a thrilling set at ReFuel last week. Their closing song, which I think is called ‘Pets’ and sung in extraordinary fashion by Hope, was beautifully chaotic and epic.

Bad Sav at the Crown Hotel, Dunedin 2012

Bad Sav at the Crown Hotel, Dunedin 2012

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