|‘Happy To Kill You’
By Alle Royale
It’s not long ago that I talked on these pages about Melbourne’s finest, Mammoth Mammoth, and now another Australian export kicks and jumps to my attention; The Mercy Kills is a half male-half female distortion fuelled quartet, with the proper looks of a teenager’s poster dream, but no other possible comparison with Swedish pop kings, Abba, or, at least, I guess.
Part glam, part punk, part Royal Trux, part Suzi Quatro, The Mercy Kills sounds fresh and refreshing; like a rare balance of pop accessibility and post-punk noise, all tied up with the guitar strings and the glamour of a Thunders-Richards inspired electric army.
Australians always had something real and ferocious about their rock and roll tendencies, and The Mercy Kills are no exception to the rule; sure they could reasonably compete on a popular market of Placebos and Franz Ferdinands, but there’s that perennial overtone of sonic dirt about them that sets the band apart from other mainstream rock wannabes, and gives them credibility, and the freedom to stomp on those distortion pedals with no compassion, as they do on one of my personal favourites, “Like The Last”, a steaming train at full speed in the dry prairies of corporate rock.
The riffs are wild, the drums are heavy, the vocals are rough, but the choruses of songs like “Save” could warm a frozen heart in the winter streets of London, and the alternate use of male and female vocals ensure to smooth things a little when the songs would tend to explode to rawer heights.
Reports say The Mercy Kills are a killer live band waiting to be unleashed outside the borders of their native country. So, if you’re in Europe, make sure to check them out next year when they’re coming for a full throttle tour of clubs; be ready, they’re going to kick your asses like a troop of Tasmanian rock devils.