Review | The Caezars at The Barn, Milton: "A thrilling ride - strap yourself in"

The Caezars play their first gig in eight years at The Barn, Milton on April 13, 2024The Caezars play their first gig in eight years at The Barn, Milton on April 13, 2024
The Caezars play their first gig in eight years at The Barn, Milton on April 13, 2024
A few days before this gig I took a trip to the theatre with my family to see Grease.

For the second time in a week, I found myself back in the 1950s - but this time rather than through the prism of 1970s musical theatre it was through the primal power of early rock'n'roll.

Openers The Hot Tone Sinners set the, erm, tone nicely, with their booze-soaked originals and a great cover of Screamin' Jay Hawkins' I Put a Spell on You.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Headliners The Caezars split amicably back in 2016 after releasing two albums and making a name for themselves in the rockabilly/punk scene.

This is their comeback show – and what a show.

They come roaring out of the gate in front of the sell-out crowd with the thunderous I Never Wanted to Cry from their 2010 debut album.

But this is no mere exercise in nostalgia - this is also the launch party for their new, self-titled album, and the second song is the aptly named single that announced their return to the fray - Back in The Jungle.

Frontman AJ Denning manages to channel both Elvis and Iggy (thankfully with less peanut butter and nudity than the latter) as he switches from crooning, to bellowing and then berating the audience. There's a sense of barely restrained menace – but you can't imagine the latter apologising to his mum, who is apparently in attendance, after inviting the audience to "get down and dirty".

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Guitarist Danny O is a livewire, making the most of the tiny stage as he whips out riff after riff and numerous howling solos. The slicked back quiff soon disintegrates into a sweaty mess.

The rhythm section of bassist Steve Spincity (possibly not his real name) and drummer Mikey Harling lay down the solid backbone that allows their wilder comrades to carry out their raucous antics.

We also get a rewired version of Jerry Lee Lewis's Lovin' Up a Storm after Denning admits that while he was a lousy human, he made some great music.

The thoroughly deserved encore finishes with Hail Ceazar. Mostly instrumental it is punctuated by howls of, yes, "Hail Ceazar!" with Denning working the crowd into a frenzy for the climax.

This is the sound of a band teetering on the edge, pushing everything into the red and taking the corners far too fast. It's a thrilling ride - strap yourself in.

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.