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Concert Review: Local Metal show 2/25/05

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First and foremost, I would like to say to all of you concertgoers, please support your local music scene. There is a lot of talent out there just waiting to be discovered, plus you never know who might be the next big thing. In the past few weeks I have been to a couple of all local metal concerts and have seen a number of good bands. The most recent one was headlined by long time act Unbalanced, and supporting them were 4 other local acts, all putting on a good show.

The first act to light up the stage was called Soul Shroud. They had a good heavy sound, but their downfall was their frontman, yet another generic screamer. I’ve spoken about this before and don’t care to get into it again, let’s just say that I would like something new brought to the table. Musically, they sounded good, their songs were full of heavy riffs and thunderous beats. They did a good job getting the small but growing crowd going.

Next up was the band that I was most interested in seeing, Anethetic (don’t worry, I can’t pronounce it either!). I’d been told that they were good, but I was not sure what to expect as I had no idea what their style was. The first chords hit, the drums struck, the opened his mouth, and I instantly had a mixed reaction to them. My problem again lied with the singing, at first it was just a generic scream. But then I listened a little closer and it wasn’t quite as generic as I was initially expecting, he was able to twist the words around in a strange growling approach that incorporated itself with the snarling staccato of the guitars. The two guitars combine to give a new twist to the nu metal style. The bass and drums come together as the driving force keeping everything else on track. Now before you get ahead of yourself, these guys are very good, but there is a decent amount of work to be done before they are ready for primetime. Fortunately they have an original streak running through them and the basis for a sound that will help them stand out from a lot of the other acts around. The thing that attracted me to the music the most was the rhythms. They used a lot of clipped machine gun like attacks that I liked a lot. That combined with the energy emanating from the stage makes these guys an act to keep an eye on. Some things that didn’t quite work for me, first off the mix, but that is hardly the bands fault, the drums and vocals needed to be brought up. Next would be the transitioning to the solos, some of them sounded awkward, kind of like “time for a solo,” there was a lack of flow between some of these elements. Lastly was the stage setup, both guitars were stacked to one side of the stage which gave the sound a lopsided feel with the bass off to my left and all guitars to the right, I’d recommend having one guitar on each side. Anyway, good performance, and I got to speak with the singer Steve, good guy. I would definitely recommend checking them out given a chance. I will giving a look at their album in the near future, look for it.

Next up, Brick by Brick. Don’t have much to say about this band. They put on an entertaining show, but there wasn’t anything special about their music. I have found that I can get into live music even if the band doesn’t impress me, and that was pretty much the case here.

The final opener was called Last Call. I had a mixed reaction to these guys. On one hand the performance was tight, and the singer had charisma to spare, but on the flip side, the music wasn’t all that special. Regardless of how standout the music was, this was a fun set. The taking shots at the crowd, shots at himself, just having fun. It definitely was a fun set, although I don’t think I would be interested in a CD.

The final act of the night was Unbalanced, that’s the band name, not a description of the members, or maybe it is, I haven’t checked. I have seen these guys before, they have been playing the local circuit for years, and there performance proves it. They are tight, creating this monstrous hardcore sound which blends with, yet stands out from other acts of the like. I can’t claim to know a lot about them, but each time I see them they seem to get a little bit better.

It was a good night of music. The crowd was hot and active for every band. I must reiterate, support local music, you may be surprised by what you find.

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About Draven99

  • SFC SKI

    Allow me to chime in with the cranky ol’ man rant about how these young kids are just recycling what was done better by those that went before. You are right in that a lot of crap singers or uninventive songs really kill the nu-metal genre, and I am always pleasantly surprised, though not nearly often enough, when I find something worth listening to.

  • http://draven99.blogspot.com Chris Beaumont

    I agree, it is rare that I am really impressed. But, when I find a local act that impresses me, I am sure to throw my support to them.

  • SFC SKI

    Diamonds in the rough, no doubt. The biggest turn-off for me is that nu-metal’s brief moment of greatness quickly fell to the dozen’s of sound-alikes that really are undistinguishable one from another. Hey, hair metal had the same problem 20 years ago, even today I can’t tell a lot of those bands apart. THe slcaker pose, the drop-D intro in a muddy bottom mix, the growly vocals or the showy screams, predictable and formulaic, no wonder I spend more time reveisiting old cassettes than looking for new music, and I am really surprised when I find something worth the price of admission or the CD that is more killer than filler. I guess I don’t havethe patience to dig through the crap to find the cream, so I am glad there are some decent critics out there lettin us know what’s worth a listen.

    First and foremost in any music criticism should be the answer to this question; Is this band/song/CD musically enjoyable or is it crap? A simple yes or no, I don’t want to hear about their clothes, stage show, personal beliefs, look, make up tips, I want to know if hearing this song will make me turn up the volume, press down the accelerator, and drive the long way home so I can hear it again.