Resembling nothing less than the Warhol actor Taylor Mead (the whimpering male nurse in Lonesome Cowboys) , David Moodist's stage presence is amazing.A reticent performer, he flounces shyly around the stage , gesturing nochalantly. His singing is an unforced and yet passionate howl. And what a dancer!
Tim McGee Ram Magazine 1982

David Graney, The Moodists, 1983.

Clare Moore, the Moodists, 1984.
Picture Wayne O'Farrell


The Moodists IBEAM Club (San Francisco) October
The Moodists are an Australian band by way of England and their music can be seen in that light as well; they come off as a cross between fellow Aussiess, the now defunct Birthday Party and Englands' the Fall. The Moodists use guitars as weapons, confronting the audience with a relentles barrage of knife edged noise. Like the Falls' Mark E Smith, vocalist (mind you, he's no singer) Dave Graney talks, whines and sneers through the material with detached disdain. Graney's lyrics are more straightforward than Smiths however , just as the Moodists chunky sound is less abrasive than the Birthday Party's.
Because the Moodists write recognizable hooks and because Graney's repeated phrases dig into the mind and take hold, there was order to their chaos."That's Frankie's negative", the bands opener, built from grity, almost funky guitar and swinging bass to sudden bursts of ravaging sound: Clare Moore's drums kicking in ferociously amid a wash of distorted guitars. On "machnie machine" guitarists Steve Miller and Mick Turner set up a rhythmic figure and then the whole band pounded it into the groud- the slow torture of repetition. Not easy to listen to or very exciting visually, the Moodists nonetheless played a tight and distinctive live show, exposing another side to Downunder
Tom Sattler LA Reader November 1984

The Moodists, the Fridge, Brixton
Australian rock, like Australian tennis , is enjoying a rennaissance. Bands as diverse as the GoBetweens, Hunters and Collectors and the Triffids are proof that our antipodean cousins are not poor relations , while Melbournes The Moodists, one of several groups to decamp to Britain, have fast acclimatized to the finer points of rock'n'roll. The Moodists utilize the tested virtues of two guitars, bass and drums to devastating effect, wearing their influences, mostly of the American Detroit hard edged variety, like badges of honour. Any notion that they might lack presence was dispelled by a performance whose intensity ranked with the Stooges or the MCt5 at their peak.
Singer Dave Graney looks deceptivley cute and curly but on the boards he is like a man possessed, scything across the stage with a fervour recalling vintage Iggy Pop.
The Moodists songs rise above the dross that passes for New Rock; they have wit and haunting depth. The clamour of "Bad Cabin" or "Runaway" expanded upon in the spooky "Frankis Negative" is then unbalanced by the psychodrama "Thirstys Calling". All the material is delivered with a commitment that inspires the physical reaction which is the definition of great rock'n'roll.
A modest, appreciative crowd were held mesmerised in the Moodists sway, their enjoyment suggesting the band's esoteric reputation is overstated. What lingered was the memory of a band without a self conscious image providing a Down Under sound that deserves to be on top. To paraphrase the slogan, The Moodists are Australian for Rock.
Max Bell, the Times (UK) 1984


The Moodists, London University
Deadpan as doornails, they hammer through each epic with a delicately crafted sense of imminent collapse, and amble around in lengthy pauses in between.
The guitarists lean forward and beat out a hate battery of noise, the oddly out of place Clare Moore tips back her pre Raphaelite locks and slams the drums in the back of the undulating guitars-in such hands these instruments make noise that is no longer natural. Meanwhile, singer David Graney looks as menacing as a woolly haied Pete Shelley, but makes a sound that burns- call the Fire Engines!"
Don Watson NME 1983

The Moodists, Graphic Arts Club, Sydney 1985
And so finally to the Moodists, I shouldn't be allowed to write about this band. Their return fro the UK has been eagerly awaited by a loyal few, and scorned or ignored by the majority. But the Moodists can't be hurt. Their rock music is compelling and transforms me into the unashamed, uncritical and whole hearted devotion of a fan.
Skilful, elegant and shattering, this short set , enigmatic performance reminded me why I loved this band so much last year before they left Australia. The Moodists reject every musical cliche and have invented an alternative that pulps the competition. One encore of "the Disciples know" and they left me for dead, only one though in my mind: Rock'n'Roll lives!
David Nicholls, Smash Hits 1985

The Moodists seem to have taken the dreaded rock into a dark alley and beaten the holy shit out of it. Each time they assemble on stage they seem to be growling more awesome. Tonight "six dead Birds" and "some kinda jones" rumbled along in true volcanic manner, threatening to belch out fuming lava at any moment, and with the new single, "enough legs to live on" about to drop on your doorsteps and scare away the postman, you'd better shut the windows and put the kids to bed sharpish.
So give up Bone Orchard, Folk Devils, muesli, the Doors, Frddie and the dreamers, perish the thought that Dave Graney plays Sancho Panza to Quixotic Cave, The Moodists are real Boss Shitkickers and don't you forget it.
Bruce Dessau, NME 1984

The Moodists songs of dark, brooding obsessions, heavy bass and drums and raging wall of noise guitars add up to a sound that is notably original , and bracingly, aggressively visceral.
Their first album, "Thirstys Calling", recorded for England's independent Red Flame label, is a powerful debut.But The Moodists forged their reputation in Australia, and then in Britain, with live performances ; listeners who were moved by the claustrophobic intensity of the early Velvet Underground or Joy Division will want to experience the Moodists at first hand.
New York Times, 1984

Clare Moore, The Moodists, 1986.
Picture Bleddyn Butcher

The Moodists are Primitives who reduce the elements of music back to their most basic., their most crude level and then proceed from that return to zero. For the Moodists there is no decoration, no embellishment beyond what is crucial. Other music which uses this trategy to similar effect includes Flippers "Sex Bomb", Eddie Cochranes "CMon Everybody" a, The Saints "I'm stranded", John Lee Hookers "Black Snake Moan" and just about anything by the Ramones and Little Richard.
Frank Brunetti, Ram magazine 1983

Reading University November 1983
An unholy noise erupts from the Union Hall, and curious students start wndering in from the bar to check out the commotion. They ain't heard anything like this in a long while, possibly never. "Frankies negative, FRankies negative, Frankie without Frankies trouble..." Dave Graney thrusts his hips lavisciously while crooning the sorry tale of Frankie and his negative into the mike clasped in his left hand, his voice astride a wall of crashing guitars and thunderous drums. Its a mean, snarling sound , but Dave looks about as threatening as an ice cream vendor , the cherubic face and mop of curly hair totally contradicting any sexual tension or danger that the gyrating pelvis might connotate.
"Jim Morrison" shouts a lank haired youth to my right, partly in derision and partly in admiration. The audience don't quite know aht to make of the Moodists and that in itself is a homage.
Meanwhile, I'm quietly wondering how the Fall are going to follow a support band as powerful as this.
Marie Ryan, Ram magazine 1984

a short bio of Clare and David

Reviews of "Two Fisted Art". What the papers say in 2003

An interview with the Moodists in 2003.

Here be an interview with Chris Walsh in 2003

a short bio of the Moodists

The Moodists and pals, words from people who were there

David Graney tries to explain where the songs were comin' from , here....

More reviews from the time and two pieces that take a longer term view on the Moodists

the lyrics?