Drawing a sizeable crowd to hear two of the classic album releases from D-A-D’s purple patch 1989-1991, ‘Riskin’ It All’ and ‘No Fuel Left for the Pilgrims’, the floor of the O2 Academy is further bolstered by people eager to see the opening act, Thundermother. As such by kick-off, the venue has an almost sold out crowd in place, eager to enjoy a night of great music.
Started in 2010 by guitarist and southern swede Filippa Nässil, met her fellow guitarist Giorgia Carteri an Italian living in Stockholm. Tilda Stenqvist on drums, Linda Ström at the bass and Irish born singer Clare Cunningham complete the band who bring a raucous, energised slab of rock ‘n’ roll to the table and spend the next 40 minutes tearing the roof off the very receptive Academy.
To watch the band play, you’d never think album two was only released at the end of 2015. Tight, coordinated, note perfect and great moves all add up to a set to remember. Bands like this prove that it is worth getting into the venue early enough to check out the support acts.
Clare works the stage like a professional with 10 albums under her belt, twisting, turning, throwing moves with her fellow band mates and generally looking like she’s having a great time. Both Filippa and Girogia deliver lick after like and Tilda and Linda, performing in front of what looks like the living room of a stately home, keep the groove going throughout.
The crowd is a mass of grinning faces and not just from the guys who are appreciating a young all girl rock n roll band on stage. The style of music, the groove the wind up and toss into the crowd with ease and the classsy playing all contribute to ensure that everyone present gets something out of this and it explains why the reaction from the room is so positive.
An immediate album purchase for me afterwards but only managing to grab 3 of the 5 members for signatures ensures I’ll be back when they return to the UK for a headlining tour in the Autumn (likely November).
Roadkill / Rock ‘N’ Roll Disaster / Cheers / Thunderous / Ffwf / The Dangerous Kind / Thunder Machine / Shoot to Kill / Deal With The Devil / It’s Just A Tease
D-A-D, the band that’s had to deal with the might of the Disney empire’s legal team over their original name, have been dogged with the fact that ‘everyone’ knows what the initials stand for, people have t-shirts with the original moniker on them, people chant the full name as they play the hits yet, officially, the name no longer exists. As such the band resort to ‘clever’ wording on their latest album ‘Dic.Nii.Lan.Daft.Erd.Ark’ (read it slowly) to remind us of their roots and pedigree.
Recent tours to the UK in conjunction with various album releases have shown a band struggling to accept that their peak should be recognised and not ignored, with their best songs often being left off the set list in favour of some of the more modern numbers. However we all experience that ‘moment’ when our parents sit us down, say “look son, we need a word” and explain where you need to focus in life.
Someone has clearly had a word with D-A-D and reminded them that they should celebrate the era that got them a significant amount of attention at the end of the 80s , start of the 90s. As such we get a 2 hour set with ‘Riskin’ It All’ being played in full during the first half of the set and in ascending track order, followed by a brief intermission and then ‘No Fuel Left for the Pilgrims’ getting an airing in reverse order. A smart move that allows them to finish the main set with their best song to date. By the time they start, confirmation that the venue is sold-out comes through.
From the off, the band mix, energy, eccentricity and enthusiasm adding a dash of “ah those crazy Danes” thanks to bassist Stig Pedersen’s wacky outfits and wholly original, 2 string bass guitar designs. Jesper Binzer, still looking fit, healthy and proof positive that pizza, beer and an extra 80 pounds in weight don’t need to follow the classic rock acts of the 80s. It’s refreshing to see a band that still wants to take care of themselves and prove they have a future rather than those just doing the rounds to make a quick buck.
The two classic albums in question are played with gusto, with Stig, dressed like Admiral Nelson, changing bass guitars and always adding more to the spectacle. Jesper, dressed in denim, keeping it simple is back by brother Jacob who looks unnervingly like a younger Phil Collen, reeling off riff after riff of cow-punk as only this band can do. At the back, Laust Sonne, dressed like he should be in a swing band plays under the back drop of the stately home fireplace and huge painting hanging where a band’s banner would normally be found.
Highlights include a great acoustic session which breaks the set up perfectly, the humour of ‘I Won’t Cut My Hair’ and of course, the whole of ‘No Fuel…’ the album that got me into the band when it was first released.
‘Girl Nation’, ‘Rim Of Hell’ and ‘Jihad’ are all classic anthems that tease the big finale and ‘that’ song. ‘Sleeping My Day Away’ is transformed into a magnificent opus clocking in at nearly 9 minutes thanks to some awe inspiring playing from Jacob.
Great show, great set, 2 great albums. If you’ve wondered about seeing the band and never managed to get round to it, do not hesitate the next time they tour.
Riskin’ It All
Day of Wrong Moves
Rock ‘n’ Rock Radar
I Won’t Cut My Hair
Down That Dusty 3’rd World Road
Makin’ Fun of Money
Grow or Pay
Smart Boy Can’t Tell Ya’
Riskin’ It All
Laugh ‘n’ a ½
No Fuel Left for the Pilgrims
Lords of the Atlas
Rim of Hell
Point of View
Sleeping My Day Away
It’s After Dark