13

Redefining Bass

The first time most people hear about Death From Above 1979 will be in, some part, from their press release stating that they want to sound like an elephant in your living room. Not necessarily a good thing you might think - especially when there are only two members of the band. A drummer and a bassist. That's going to raise anybodies eyebrows.


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Whilst DFA 1979 may not have time to play in anybodies living rooms (this time around), they've managed to fit in a full UK tour and are playing their third night in the Nottingham Rescue Rooms. Before the set, Jesse informs us that so far they've felt totally at home. How will indie-fuelled Nottingham treat the guys? Nowadays a two piece mind conjures the image of The White Stripes - a guitarist and a drummer playing white-wash indie rock. Thankfully DFA1979 are so far from the commercial tripe that's being produce at the moment that the Rescue Rooms are in for a treat.


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Sebastian, who napped through our interview time, appears rejuvenated as the duo stride on stage both looking full of something that would, quite possibly, even scare a rather large African elephant.


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As they lurch into their set, it's clear just why the venue is packed to capacity. Over in the UK - we have Muse, a band that has become known for existing in a genre they have made their own. No other band sounds like them - and DFA 1979 have done the same thing. It would be hard pushed for anyone to imitate the sound they create. It is packed with deep-end kick, yet somehow managed to maintain the soaring highs that you wouldn't expect from even the fuzziest of basses. There is no doubt that they have created a sound which remains entirely their own.


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Within moments you realise that the most common interview question for DFA 1979 is answered in their performance. The first time anybody speaks to, or talks about, Sebastian and Jesse - the question "why no guitars?" is raised. It's pretty simple once you've seen them play. Jesse handles his bass like nobody else. For an instrument that is generally considered to be designed for slower playing than a guitar, he handles it like a madman. Thrashing away in a style that would impress Slash or any other guitar legend - he is complimented by Sebastian's drumming that is thoroughly relentless.


As the current air-play-receiving single "Blood on Our Hands" erupts, it becomes obvious that DFA have a talent like few others - their unique styling, power and skill more than carry their performance as the crowd burst in to a hand-thrusting fury.


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Flea (RHCP) is commonly regarded as one of the best bassists in rock. Thousands cite him as an influence for their bassist careers. From today, that should change. Jesse is redefining just what being a great bassist actually means. He has a talent like no other.


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If you like it hard, if you like it fast or if you just want to see a fucking amazing rock band then check out DFA 1979.



To view all photos taken during this set click here. There are 18 available.