Review: Pest Live at The Whitley

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Players: Zach Erfort, vocals, guitar; Adrian Estrella, guitar; Dave Dissaro, bass guitar; Dan Parker, drums


Material: There is no logical explanation why Pest was able to pull off their first live show, while having only rehearsed for one hour the night before. Other than the fact that a few of the core members forged a friendship that predates the band by nearly 10 years. Pest is the brainchild of frontman Zach Erfort. From his original music to the group’s stagewear and masks, he has strategically crafted a brand that is heavily influenced by the music of Guns N’ Roses and Green Day. Songs like “Confess To Me” are a gritty depiction of the way he combines hard rock with alternative rock. 

Musicianship: The natural chemistry between Zach Erfort and Dave Dissaro was a glaring testament to their familiarity with one another. The lead singer and bassist are part of another Los Angeles band, High Risk, but unlike the aforementioned punk band, Pest often inserts elements of progressive rock and pop punk into their music. Pest’s drummer, Dan Parker, produced every studio version of six songs that Pest played live at The Whitley. His live drum fills did a nice job of building the tension for their hard-hitting tracks like “Pest.”

Performance: When the four-piece band began their live set, the stage lights went so dark that all you could see as a spectator were the glowing red devil horns worn by go the go-go dancers throughout the Goth Club. As the lights slowly started to brighten, Zach Erfort belted out the lyrics to a hard rock composition called “Groove Me To Hell.” The loud licks blaring from his guitar blended quite well with the riffs played by the rhythm guitar player, Adrian Estrella. This show took a wild and crazy turn for the better when Pest pulled an audience member on stage for a lap dance from the go-go dancers—while they performed a hard rock song called “Crazy.” Dave Dissaro kicked the antics into a higher gear when he jumped off stage and incited a mosh pit with the audience members….much to their satisfaction.

Summary: The imagery of smoke machines, dim stage lighting and cutting-edge attire certainly enhanced the impact of this show. Pest presented a track called “Generation Fuck You” with a theatrical flair that was reminiscent of bands like Velvet Revolver and Poison. If this band can put on such an entertaining show after just one hour of rehearsal––one wonders what they could achieve with more practice time.