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SHOW REVIEW: Deathfix at the Magic Stick, Detroit by Michael Welchans 9/4/13

Brendan Canty and Rich Morel formed Deathfix when they were touring with Bod Mould's band. In case you lived in a cave in the 80's, Mould co-formed a band called Hüsker Dü, cited as key influences on bands like the Pixes and Nirvana. Mould has gone on to create various masterpieces, and Rich Morel is the other DJ half of BLOWOFF with Bob Mould, enjoying residency at Washington D.C.'s 930 Club as well as others in NYC, San Francisco, San Diego and Chicago. Morel is also a singer/songwriter, producer and remixer for a list of artists that includes Cyndi Lauper, Pet Shop Boys, New Order, Depeche Mode, Yoko Ono and The Killers.

Canty, besides founding the incredible DIY band Fugazi, noted for their ethical stance, manner of business practice and contempt towards the music industry, as well as the band Rites of Spring, has produced records for Ted Leo, The Make Up, and the Thermals, and made films for Wilco, Eddie Vedder and Death Cab for Cutie.

With Jerry Busher (Fugazi, French Toast) on drums and vocals, and Mark Cisneros on bass, the chemistry in this Deathfix is simply untouchable.

These guys play it volatile and untwisted, and they truly represented retro in the same manner as the two most important American psychedelic hard rock groups ever formed. Immediately, Deathfix reminded me of the MC5. But as I paid deeper attention, Deathfix more resembled the early, harsh-sounding Pink Floyd with Syd Barrett on lead. The experience and wisdom in Deathfix (and their soundman) culminated into a timeless set that was perfectly loud, monstrous, trippy, mean and dirty. The instrumental tones were sublime, each song lent itself to the next, and the songwriting was all of the very best of the mid '60's anti-establishment psychedelic power rock that has been so poorly convoluted by so many other bands. The audience at the Stick clearly knew it as well as I did. It was an absolutely stunning set- this is what American psychedelic post-hardcore rock should look and sound like.

Six out of four stars. You gotta get this recording.

Michael Welchans