King Gizzard – Live Review

Polyrhythm fans and mullet-havers, where were you on March 30th? Was it at King Gizz?

For those aware, and those not, last Wednesday saw Luna Park’s Big Top arena set the stage for a fantastic showing from Melbourne based psychedelic rock group King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, or, more colloquially, King Gizz.

The night opened with a powerpop EP from Melbourne’s The Prize followed by the wonderfully brassy (they had a sax!), garage-punk band R.M.F.C from our very own South Coast. By the time King Gizz were due to play, the Big Top was packed tight with people boppin’ along to the tunes while a beachball someone brought was being periodically launched around the crowd.

The people were pumped for a good show and boy did King Gizz deliver.

Saying their hellos to the good people of Sydney, King Gizz welcomed the start of their set with what sounded like the gentle, atmospheric instrumentation of The River from their 2015 album Quarters!, occasionally teasing Nonagon Infinity’s insanely catchy Wah Wah before jumping right into the high energy Road Train from the same 2016 album.

At this point in the night, a small mosh pit had already formed.

Mercifully, King Gizz dialled the energy down to something less frenetic with the smooth, synth-y sounds of Ambergris from 2022’s Omnium Gatherum before it picked up again with an extended showing of Hypertension from Laminated Denim mixed with Iron Lung from Ice, Death, Planets, Lungs, Mushrooms and Lava, both of which are also from 2022. To my great pleasure, they also played Ice V, my number one song from the jazz-inspired Ice, Death album.

So yeah, personally, this was my favourite part of the night. I absolutely love their entire 2022 catalogue; I just think it was a really strong year for King Gizz and it really shows in their discography. Plus, hearing Ambrose Kenny-Smith crooning out Iron Lung live really was an experience.

After that was another extended section but this time just, like, 15 minutes straight of Shanghai from 2021’s

Butterfly 3000. The crowd definitely appreciated it considering the size of the mosh pit and looking online afterwards showed some anecdotal evidence that some guy was vibing so hard in the mosh pit that he dislocated his knee, which, fair. If that guy’s reading this: sorry about your knee, glad you had a good time though.

Anyway, next up was Stu Mackenzie whipping out a flute and absolutely killing it on Grim Reaper, also from Omnium Gatherum.

This was definitely the part of the night where everything started to seem a little bit like a fever dream, especially as the set list jumped from one fan favourite album in Omnium Gatherum to another with Crumbling Castles and Fourth Colour, the intro and closing songs from 2017’s Polygondwanaland.

To top off an absolutely fantastic set list, King Gizz finished off the night by playing a new, unreleased song called Gila Monster, which they debuted on tour earlier this month. To fans of 2019’s Infest The Rats’ Nest album, this song is right up your alley; it’s thrashy, it’s high energy, it’s everything you could possibly want from a metal inspired King Gizz track.

So, for everyone that was there: I hope you had a great time. For anyone that missed it: I hope you catch a ticket for next time.

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