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Love is a Mizer

Love is a Mizer

by Lize Kay / 18.08.2009

Ever since they played our gig for free to raise funds and boards for the Mahala Surf Co., we’ve held a soft spot in our dark little hearts for the City Bowl Mizers. And it’s not often we are graced with the presence of Durban bands in Stellenbosch. So when I heard that the City Bowl Mizers would be playing, I knew I had to go, and apparently everyone else in Stellenbosch shared my thoughts on this chilly Thursday night.

Bohemia may be my second home, but I must admit I have never rated it very highly as a venue for live music- the stage is small, the place gets too crowded and generally it hosts the same sub-standard bands week in and week out. But this time I had to swallow my words because Bohemia hosted a band that did not play a full set of covers, and they pulled the gig off well – sound, lighting and the general vibe were all superb. While this national heritage site is almost always well occupied, Thursday night was bursting at the seams. One of many a student jostling to get to the front of the stage, the excitement was palpable. And then we went wild. It was a sort of an ecstasy paradise, where, for a short while, everyone forgot about tests and deadlines, or the greater problems of the world. It was a bouquet made up entirely of smiles, dance moves and sing-alongs.

The City Bowl Mizers’ music shouldn’t to be tied to a chair with a rope and beaten to find out what it really means. Rather than attempt to analyse their sound, breaking it down into compartments and boxing it in a neatly defined genre, it’s better to just rock up and let your body work it all out on the dancefloor. Their pop ‘n roll dance tunes are simple, but packed with exuberance. There is more than enough energy going around on stage, and the crowd responds with palpable excitement for what they do. So don’t go there with a hose in hand ready to torture a confession out of it. All you have to do is dance, smile and enjoy.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    i clicked kak but mean kiff, too kiff!

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  2. Terry Twoshoe says:

    In the land of the shit band, mediocre wins fans.


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  3. B dog says:

    Support Local Music Terry, come now! Stop standing there with your hands in your pockets and being shy in the corner, or maybe you’re too old to party. Who knows. Kiff

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  4. Andy says:

    Nah I would argue that Terry is actually doing South African music more of a service by saying that he thinks the Mizers are sub-standard. You don’t have to agree with him/her. But slavishly supporting bands just because they’re South African is stupid. And it actually holds back the development of the industry as a whole. Blind support is not what we’re after. Embrace criticism. Speak your mind. And just because I dig the Mizers doesn’t mean you have to…

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  5. Croaky1 says:

    Terry Twoshoe, these guys have done more for the local music scene than you probly could in a lifetime! Nobody likes a twat so stop acting like one…

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  6. Croaky1 says:

    Andy, have you seen what these guys get an audience to do? You can, every time they play! It’s not about local music support, it’s about what they produce in the audience that, 9 times out of 10, have paid to see them.

    I will add that I agree 100% with your statement that ‘…slavishly supporting bands just because they’re South African is stupid.’ There are too many bands out there that just can’t, musically, fill the shoes they need to in order capture a slice of the (already tight) market.

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  7. djf says:

    “it’s about what they produce in the audience that, 9 times out of 10, have paid to see them” – this may speak to the entertainment value of the band but says little about their creative merit and their ability to contribute towards the development of a South African musical indentity.

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  8. Croaky1 says:

    @ djf: I understand what you’re saying, I should have elaborated further perhaps… A simple answer to your statement would be the question: Have you heard any of the stuff that they have recorded? Nuff said, I’m not their cheerleader, I’m just someone who appreciates what they do!

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  9. Pound of Flesh says:

    Agree with Andy’s sentiments.

    The Mizers, in my humble un-Lester-Bangs opinion, are a great rock n’ roll band. Sure they may not offer completely original and/or new music (let’s be honest…who does nowadays?) but they have definitley added a humid East Coast flavour to the sound. They get the crowd off their bar stools and onto the dance floor. Their debut album is of great quality and is well suited for driving around on a hot summer days…which in Durban…is every day. I bet if they were from Bellville (even Slaap Stad in general) or up North they would be the darlings of MK. Maybe they need to mention “indie” every 5 seconds and promote GHD. Whatever.
    That said, even with these “disadvantages”, they managed to get an MK nomination for something or other, made the cover of Music Maker and were on Avontoer.

    I’m personally looking forward to the release of their new album.

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  10. djf says:

    I have seen them live once a couple of years ago. Leading on from a discussion that Mr Young and I had on a previous post, could someone point us in the direction of this new album of theirs – either via download or a review thereof?

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  11. Info says:

    They have apparently signed, or are in the process of signing a distribution deal with Sony for the new recording. This information is In need of official verification.

    EP: Swing it (2004)
    Album: Lights Out (2006)

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  12. Tara says:

    The MIzers, my dear friends are playing at The Mansion (11 Walnut Road, Dbn) this coming Friday.
    yes yes yes, blatant advertising 🙂

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  13. djf says:

    I can’t wait for Zeno to review it, especially if it drags him away from his TV set.

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  14. Nathan Zeno says:

    Yes, The Mizers are busy signing up with a label. They will be launching the new album early October. Full coverage promised.

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