The Danforth Music Hall was host to Australian psych rock band King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard on June 12th, who brought with them ‘70s nostalgia-rich punk band Amyl & The Sniffers. Upon arrival at the Danforth, there was already a line up wrapping up the stairs to the second floor just for the merch booth alone. Cool merch finds complete (a medium Microtonal Banana shirt and a copy of Polygondwanaland on vinyl), it was time to head into then venue proper which was roughly 30% packed as others begin filing in.
By the end of openers Amyl & The Sniffers’ set, the place was rammed and the band received a roaring ovation for their performance. New to the band before that night, many of us were stoked we’d discovered them. Going hard, as of late, on the Australian punk scene, eating up groups like The Dead Love, Skegss, Cable Ties, and The Chats, it was easy to fall in love with this act as well, who deeply scratched that same Aussie itch.
Check out the retro video for Amyl and The Sniffers’ “70’s Street Munchies” here.
Lead singer Amy Taylor helps transport listeners back to the ’70s garage punk scene of yesteryear with firecracker presence and rebel spirit. Backed by three legends looking fresh from the skids, Dec Martin on guitar, Bryce Wilson on drums, and Gus Romer on bass, this band was the perfect choice to kick off the show for King Gizzard.
After the champagne showers of Amyl & The Sniffers subsided, it was time for King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard. The Danforth was packed to the brim and the crowd was hyped. There were seemingly all walks of life at the King Gizz show, from the grungy metal head to the aging hipsters, yet they all cheered in unison for the Australian imports. Lit with a massive backdrop packed with insane lo-fi visuals, King Gizzard would kick off their set with “Robot Stop”, “Big Fig Wasp” and “Gamma Knife”, the first three tracks from their hot 2017 release, Nonagon Infinity.
Few things cut deeper than King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard’s “Gamma Knife”.
The crowd was hype and quickly thrown into a frenzy of sweaty mosh pits. Much to the chagrin of The Danforth, the weed smoke was bellowing into the air with tokers immediately (sadly) ejected from site. With a little breather after the opening tunes, KG would then kick off tracks from Microtonal Flying Banana playing “Rattlesnake”, “Sleep Drifter” and “Billabong Valley”. At this point, I knew we’d be getting a sort of 3-song sampler set from their 5 big releases in 2017. Sure enough, that’s what would happen as they then dropped “All is Known”, “Muddy Water” and “The Wheel” from their latest album Gumboot Soup.
Concertgoers did hear also “Cellophane”, the sole track from I’m In your Mind Fuzz, plus five songs from Murder of the Universe. Eventually King Gizzard would end the night with songs off of Polygondwanaland. While many of us were hoping to hear “People Vultures” and “Tetrachromacy”, alas it was not to be. That said, while it would seem each town received slightly different setlists, the Toronto show was a thing of beauty and well worth the wait for this band.
Grab a big yummy bowl-full of fresh Gumboot Soup.