The Moonlandingz were concieved in the realms of fiction, mere bit part characters in the interstellar novella that was the Eccentronic Research Council’s 2015 album Johnny Rocket… But after a lively 2017, they crawl out of our craziest narratives and onto the rather large stage of Brixton Electric. With support from the frighteningly young Rough Trade signings Honey Hahs and garage punx Sweat, any music but the Moonlandingz’ own paled in comparison on the night.
Introduced onto the stage by Pat Lyons, the American poet that famously collected the NME Award for the Fat White Family, The Moonlandingz staggered on to what was essentially the roar of a homecoming crowd, a feeling of ecstasy surged through the venue before the meandering psychedelia of 'Psyche Ersatz' even echoed through the old theatre’s walls.
The band, however, are at their best through the stomping, malevolent rock ‘n’ roll numbers. The fuzzy off-kilter groove of 'Black Hanz' was propped up by an electric wall of sound provided by the groups two synth players. During 'Neuf De Pape' and 'I.D.S', Johnny Rocket, the frontman, was stripped to just his jeans, as he pulsated and twitched while he barked out the choruses to these depraved anthems.
Whilst the band are riding the crest of their debut album, Interplanetary Class Classics, the absolute peak of the show came when they exorcised the demons of their first EP. The closing two songs of the set were ripped from this very EP, a woozy version of 'Lay Yer Head Down In The Road' was followed by a simply storming version of 'Man In Me Life'. Feeling more like an expulsion of a demon than a performance of a song, the band brutally hammered through the set closer.
A set that barely surpassed forty minutes, it was difficult not to want more and more Moonlandingz. But as they’re disappearing back into the realms of fiction after their cluster of December shows, including one at the 100 Club, it’s a necessity you focus on the beautiful anomaly that is Valhalla Dale’s greatest rock 'n' roll band.
Words: Cal Cashin
Photos: Robin Pope