Cairo Knife Fight: Gang of Two Wage Guerrilla Rock Warfare

By on February 18, 2012


“It’s time for the long shadow of The White Stripes to step aside…Cairo Knife Fight have chosen an appropriate name. Wielding the sharpest knife in the souk, they’ve carved themselves a musical niche only dreamed of by lesser mortals… Cairo Knife Fight bring fresh kill to the table. And you can smell the blood on their breath.”
– More Images (CMJ 2011 Review)

“…[Cairo Knife Fight’s] 2012 debut appearance at SXSW in Austin, TX marks a milestone in the band’s career as they are officially invited to hypnotize the audience of one of the most prominent music festivals on US soil with their epic, hallucinatory rock ‘n’ roll sound. Get to know Cairo Knife Fight’s gritty, mesmerizing music and be prepared for their mosh-inducing live performances as they bring their heralded sound from down under to the US.”
– Dread music Review

Cairo Knife Fight: Gang of Two Wage Guerrilla Rock Warfare

Though New Zealand’s Cairo Knife Fight is only comprised of two men, between the tom-tom attack of drummer/lead vocalist/bass synth man Nick Gaffaney and the blood-drenched axe work of guitarist and loop pedal genius Aaron Tokona this duo deliver a tidal wave of complete sound that is both hallucinatory and imbued with an intense sense of urgency. In a recent interview, Gaffaney likened what they do to guerrilla warfare, turning their weakness into strengths in all respects. We could not agree more. And the proof is in the riff-churned pudding. In this case, their new four-track EP Cairo Knife Fight II, and the first single and accompanying video off the album, “The Origin of Slaves,” which is massive, chest thumping, and blood curdling without losing razor’s edge precision.

This is well-practiced recklessness at it’s best, and Cairo Knife Fight know just how far to push it before reigning in the assault. With a sound replete with metal riffs and prog rock expansiveness that has been likened to elements of Foo Fighters, Queens of the Stone Age, and Them Crooked Vultures, Cairo Knife Fight have earned their fair share of admirers and shared the stage with all three of these like-minded bands, even finding themselves personally invited not once but twice to open for Foo Fighters in the past year—most recently at New Zealand’s biggest musical event of 2011 at Western Springs.

They’ve got the power of Zeppelin and an abject fearlessness that plants them firmly alongside Radiohead in terms of a willingness to shirk boundaries. They are finalists in the “Rock Album of the Year’ category of the 2011 New Zealand Vodafone Music Awards for their debut effort, Iron, and aside from the release of their follow-up Cairo Knife Fight II, they kicked down the door to headline a triumphant CMJ music festival showcase in New York in 2011. The New Zealand Herald calls the new album “…brilliantly unhinged, hallucinatory, and riff-fired music,” and Tokona insists, “The first EP was just a taste. This one sounds like we are on our way somewhere – we’re taking more risks and we are way more fearless.” And in a short time they’ll be on their way to Austin, Texas for SXSW 2012. Whoa.

2/17 at Ilam Gardens (Canterbury Uni Orientation)
2/24 at Forsyth Bar Stadium
3/1 at Basement (New Plymouth)
3/2 at Colleseum (Palmerston North)
3/3 at SFBH (Wellington)
3/7 at Saints and Sinners (Invergargill)
3/8 at Sammy’s
3/9 at The Bedford (Christ Church)


Author: DaveHHM

Dave Luttrull: Owner/Editor in Chief of Hellhound Music. Star Wars nerd, Gamer, Destiny homer, blogger, writer and lover of all things music.