As night slowly falls on the hottest day in Ireland since 1976, Deap Vally grace the stage in the Limelight 2 in Belfast. The Californian duo are playing the Limelight 2 tonight ahead of supporting Queens of the Stone Age at Finsbury Park in London this weekend along with the likes of Iggy Pop, Run The Jewels and The Hives to name only a few. It’s fair to say that it’s a pretty big deal. So Deap Vally are warming up their chops tonight ahead of this weekend. And boy is it a warm one inside the Limelight on this wonderful evening! Although being from The Golden State the band doesn’t seem too phased with the current heat wave we’ve recently been enjoying.
Lindsey Troy (lead vocalist/guitarist) and Julie Edwards (drummer/vocalist) kick off tonight’s set with the gritty ‘Baby I Call Hell’ to a rather enthusiastic crowd. Right from the start it instantly becomes apparent that Deap Vally are a band that truly know how to keep things both simple and old school. Lindsey and Julie ignore the constricting natures of being a two piece with their combination of pounding drums and fuzzy, bass heavy guitar riffs. Lindsey Troy sings each song with a swagger and snarling attitude. What’s even more impressive is that she does all this sporting an outfit with tassels on the sleeves that somehow don’t get in the way of her guitar playing. Julie Edwards maintains a punchy rhythm throughout perfectly complementing her partner in crime.
Throughout their hour long set Deap Vally rip through many fan favourites such as “Gonna Make My Own Money”, “Bad For My Body”, “Walk Of Shame” as well as treating us with two new songs they recently released called “Bring It On” and “Get Gone”. Both songs go down a storm with the crowd. One particular highlight of the show was “Smile More”, the second single from Deap Vally’s second album Femijism. The song truly captures the spirit and mission statement of the band. Julie locks in the groove while Lindsey delivers a swampy guitar riff. Unabashedly she sings “I don’t want to be a reflection / I’m so bored with this rejection” declaring her individuality and shrugging off comments from narrow minded people. Midway through the show Deap Vally confirm this is their first time playing in Belfast and declaring the weather to be “tropical”, words very rarely used to describe Belfast that’s for sure. Another highlight of the night would have to be the stomping and hard hitting “End of the World”. With Julie hammering the floor tom and snare and Lindsey howling “There’s a thing I like to call it, brother / When you fight and you kill you’re at war with each other / It’s the end of the world” it’s a particularly ferocious moment in the show.
At the end of the set both ladies briefly leave the stage with the crowd calling for one more tune. Deap Vally do just that in the form of “Royal Jelly”. A song with a marching tempo before the chorus explodes with fuzzy riffs and crashing cymbals. It’s a hell of a closing number and a surefire way to leave a huge impact. And with that the gig draws to a close. Lindsey and Julie thank the crowd and take a bow. But before calling it a night both ladies head straight to the merch stand to sell and sign merchandise as well as pose for photos with their fans, a very down to earth and generous way to end a gig. Deap Vally proved tonight that rock n’ roll is still very much alive and well in 2018. Photo by Ashley Walters.