Die! Die! Die! – Whammy Bar: September 30, 2022

Die! Die! Die! finally played a sell-out show at Auckland’s Whammy Bar on K. Road after the gig was postponed in August due to Covid.

The seminal Kiwi punk band is promoting their brand new and already critically acclaimed 7th album This Is Not An Island Anymore. Die! Die! Die! were originally formed in 2003 by Dunedin school buddies Michael Prain on drums and Andrew Wilson on guitar/vocals. Bassist Lachlan Anderson joined them in 2018.

The capacity audience was treated to two other three-piece support bands, Swallow the Rat and Repairs.

Swallow The RatSwallow the Rat

First up were Auckland based post punk Swallow the Rat who warmed up the room nicely with their raucous guitar, and with drummer and bassist both on angry man vocals. Does this vocal style reflect the vibe of the country we are living in today? Who knows? Of their nine-song set I particularly enjoyed the more mellow drum led anthem Don’t from their 2021 album which they split with the NYC band Clone.


Next to grace the stage were local band Repairs. Beginning with their song Cut To The Chase they set the scene, appearing to enact a relationship crisis before our eyes… although a little embarrassing, as a voyeur, and we are after all, all voyeurs, so what can get more entertaining than that? As the set progressed with songs from their 2020 debut album Repeat, Repeat the relationship between the bassist Nicola and guitarist Marty seemed to gel and evolve and almost capitulate into the stunning drum and bass led finale of Nimrod.

Die! Die! Die!

Die! Die! Die!At last our heroes graced us with their presence and with an ethereal start from the title song of their new album This Is Not An island Anymore. Andrew’s paired down guitar using a drum stick on fret board, blasting out Gang of Four/Andy Gill reminiscent lead guitar noise with super sharp drum rhythms. Track two was A.T.T.I.T.U.D. this time the guitar was put through a repetitive looper allowing Andrew freedom to jump all over the stage and in amongst the adoring crowd. The distortion was turned up to maximum as the mosh-pit exploded into action.

The set continued and at one point the guitar was expertly ground into the low ceiling, taken down and left on top of the speaker stack and it all sounded so good! This is why I love small venues!

15 Years was a shock to the system! Surprisingly the lyrics make sense and drown out the sensory overload of the wall of noise behind. And then, just when you want the song to go on and on,… it stops.

They ended the set with the dystopian Imagine (Spending So Long Making Other People Feel Like Shit) with the repeat lyric “Not A Very Nice Person”…. bring it on… I need to see them again to help process what just happened.

They did return briefly, after a rapturous applause to treat us to an encore of two more tracks from their huge repertoire.

Michael Grunfeld

Click on any image to view a photo gallery by Brenna Jo Gotje:

Die! Die! Die!:


Swallow The Rat: