Stiff Richards – Dig

Two years ago Stiff Richards blew my tiny little mind away. I head the name for a while, but finally saw them at the Old Bar slotted inbetween Ute Root and Powerline Sneakers. My jaw was on the floor like a Hanna Barbera cartoon character when I saw them. They were the most exciting band I had seen since the Bitter Sweet Kicks. Fast outta control rock n roll at its finest. While not the first band to play that style of rock, there was no pretense about them, I didn/t look at them and think oh it sounds like this and that. They were their own original band not trying to be anyone but themselves. And up front was this young fella Wolfie. Best frontman since Brendan from Eddy Current. He had a killer set of pipes on him, had this sense of danger bout him, and a presence to get even the biggest shoe gazer up and rocking out.  I ran to the merch desk to buy their self titled LP, possibly the most sorted after LP in Melbourne over the last year. One person offered me $80 for the LP when he found out I had it. Like there live show it was fast and loose, some of the greatest garage rock songs to ave come out of Melbourne. Now the Stiffies ave dropped LP number two, to much anticipation.

The title track opens it, with Wolfie screaming, almost a cry for help, followed by feedback and straight into a brilliant three chord riff. When Wolfie screams DIG hes giving it every last bit of energy he has, almost as if hes screaming a demand at the listener. Also props for using the phrase cripple blisters.

Bad Disease tells us of a doctors trip and what the man in the white coat can do to fix the disease. Great punchy garage rock track under two minutes.

Taste has a killer riff just hanging in the background, half way through it has the two guitarists doing different things, but neither is louder, or neither one more in focus than the other. Brilliant production work on display here to get that dueling sound.

Ostentatious has a guitar sound Deniz Tek will be spewing he didn/t come up with. A haunting bass solo is thrown in the mix, for me the best song on the LP.

PEA slows things down. For a few seconds. The line I need Power Energy Action should be a pub sing along in the perfect world.

Do it Right Now is another short catchy punk track. All over in 80 seconds. Incredible short fast loud track. Who needs four minutes to get a song in when you can do it in under a minute and a half?

Intro closes proceedings, fun two minute instrumental showcasing how good the band is and how just a few chords is really all you need and two minutes is plenty of time to get a song in.

Not exactly a 180 from their debut, but a different sound to their first effort.  A bit of industrial on one or two tracks, and two tracks a bit over a minute, DIG is a cracking second release from the Stiffies, just as good as there first. Eight tracks that come in round 25 minutes (the way all LPs should be), a fast assault to the listener, before you can process what the fuck did I hear bang its straight into the next track for another quick fire assault. Stiff Richards for me are the best live band in Melbourne right now, and there second release is a brilliant achievement to get that stage show down on record. Rock n Roll don/t come much better than this.

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