Decades was the opening band for Villainy’s Dead Sight album release tour, so I had the privilege of seeing them play 7 times over 3 weekends.   They have been playing together since 2009 but have recently taken a slight direction (and name) change.  Made up of Emma Cameron (vocals/guitar), Curtis Booth (bass), Dan Perry (drums) and Liam Muir (guitar) they describe their sound as ‘dark pop,’ and whilst you can hear the influence of bands such as Biffy Clyro, Garbage, and Our Lady Peace they have created their own distinctive sound.  

As they were the opening act, throughout the tour they played to varying sized crowds and on varying sized stages.  It seemed to make no difference to them, whether there were 50 or 500 people there, they gave it their all.  It was fantastic to see them play to a packed venue in their hometown of Christchurch.

On stage they are a tight unit – individually talented, a great rapport with each other, and most importantly, an obvious love for what they are doing.  Their sound and energy on consistently have the audience dancing along after only 2 or 3 songs.  Usually it takes a song people know to get them going, whether that be a cover or their single, but Decades keeps their single to the end.  It’s a brave move, but it is also quite fun watching the crowd suddenly go from ‘this is good…who are these guys?’ to ‘I know this song. It’s great’ and really rock out.

 

Emma being awesome
Emma being awesome 

Emma has a stunning voice, imagine Shirley Manson crossed with Courtney Love, and a natural, relaxed stage presence. Not only do I wish there were more women in rock, I wish there were more like her.  She dresses and plays how she wants – she isn’t trying to be any stereotype or appeal to any market, she just loves playing and being on stage – and because of that she is a fantastic front person.  Not only that she is one awesome woman who takes no shit off stage either.  She has recently started a blog outlining some of the shit she has had to put up with being a woman in rock called Good For a Girl.

 

There are some great tunes in their set and if you haven’t already heard it, check out the single Terrified.   One ear-worm I have had since the tour is The Right Mistake.  It is one of those songs that moves and changes as it goes on – plus it is about something we can all relate too: bad influences. Another song worth mentioning is The Truth.  It is very Garbage-like and one of Emma’s favourites – I love the way it shows how much she, and the rest of the band obviously enjoy  playing it. If I was to pick one song that highlights their onstage rapport it’d be this one; check out a short clip of how awesome they all look here.

So to Emma, Dan, Liam and Curtis.  Thanks for a great bunch of shows and thanks for hanging out with me at various times over the 3 weeks.  It was great getting to know you all a little bit and I am really looking forward to the next time (please come to Wellington soon).

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