New Projects
Hoot Hoot
  New Zealand Herald

The Cakekitchen and Dead C,
The Venue, Saturday night.

On paper this was an appealing combination - The Cakekitchen riding high on the
strength of their recent (excellant) self-titled EP, and the Dead C, in their first ever
Auckland performance after a series of brittle, aggressive tapes and records. It was
also a night which showed two poles of Kiwi music.

The Cakekitchen were as impressive as expected. Graeme Jefferiesī hard-edged rock
tunes (with just enough of a nod to pop sensibilities) swelled to fill the room as drummer
Robert Key kicked them along with a passion and Rachael King`s bass popped and
fluttered behind a dense but carefully differentiated wall of guitar noise.

The Cakekitchen run like a finely tuned tank engine these days and in songs like
Dave the Pimp, a bursting knot of energy, Jefferies calls the gear changes effortlessly.
No surprises from this band, just some of the best original music around at the moment.

Dead C were another thing altogether. Without a bassist the jagged sound of the two
guitars was like barbed wire bullets flying past your temples. It was edgey, penertrating
stuff but the total effect of intense guitar static lost focus somewhere.

The audience quickly divided itself into those standing mesmerised or drinkers and
departees. Dead C willingly embraced their role as noise merchants and thatīs fine,
but what was noticeable of the few times the mesmerised became animated was when
Bruce Russell launched into their most accomadating sons, Bad Politics.

But that was over in a minute or so and after one particularly brutal assault Russell
said, "and weīve got plenty more just like it." They had. Some less meandering (Dead C
donīt seem too fussed about how "songs" wind up) others more of the same.

Dead C were interesting enough and itīs worth remembering that Cakekitchen were
similarly rowdy and unfocused about 18 months ago at the Rising Sun. Maybe Dead C
donīt want to go down that tighten-up / oil-the-cogs route. Fine too.

But on the night The Cakekitchen - for all their "refining" and expousing of the value
of a song - came out the more intense. And, ironically that intensity looked like the
ground Dead C wanted to claim as their own.
- Graham Reid
   © Cakekitchen 2020