The Metal Files

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Holy Grail, Exmortus & Spellcaster Concert Review, Austin, TX, August 3, 2016

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The Fellowship of the Strings Tour rolled in to Grizzly Hall yesterday featuring bands full of really good guitar players.  Having seen all 3 bands before, there were no real surprises here.

Spellcaster hit the stage promptly at 815PM.  Yes, you read that right.  An early show on a weeknight.  What a novel concept!  There was no local opener and set times didn’t get announced until about an hour before the show.  Had this show been downtown, it likely would have been a 10PM start time.  For us day job folks, these early shows are great.  Spellcaster’s slot was only 30 minutes and they blew through their set with ease.  The crowd was at about 60 people by my rough count during their set.  They sounded great.  I can’t recommend their latest album, Night Hides the World, enough.

Immediately after the set I hustled next door to grab a couple of al pastor tacos from Taco More.  Delicious I tell ya!  There was only 15 minutes between sets as all 3 bands were sharing the backline.  Exmortus was already on by the time I got back and I enjoyed their set a little more than I did last time.  The growing crowd was really into it and I think they may have had about 80 people.

Holy Grail rolls through Austin on the regular and the crowd had thinned out a little, but was still very much into the show.  To be honest, this may have been the best of the 4 shows I have seen by them.  James Luna’s voice was pretty much flawless.  They finished around 1115ish and all three bands just hung around and drank with the remainder of the crowd.

I bought a Spellcaster shirt, said a few goodbyes to them and some other friends and went home.  It was a fun early night.


Holy Grail & Savage Master Concert Review, Austin, TX, May 31, 2016

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Savage Master began their tour with Holy Grail last night here in Austin at Dirty Dog.  They had just come off of a European tour that included playing the Keep It True Festival.

Last night’s show was an early show with Savage Master going on at 930PM and headliners, Holy Grail, going on shortly after 1030PM.  Perfect.

I saw a couple of songs from each of the two openers.  I didn’t hate either of them nor did I really get into them.

Savage Master hit the stage with a revamped lineup due to an abrupt exit by their former drummer.  Brandon, formerly their bassist, is handling drum duties for the tour and they have a fill-in bassist.  They opened the show with 6 songs from their latest album, With Whips and Chains.  I hadn’t heard anything from the album prior to the show beyond the title track.  Everything sounded really good.  The final 4 songs were from their 2014 debut, Mask of the Devil.  Overall they sounded good and it’s always nice to hang out with them.  Good people.  As with their last show in Austin, I let them stay at my place.  I like being able to help my friends when they’re out on the road.

Holy Grail was up next and the crowd got to maybe 50 total…MAYBE.  Other than the first time I saw them at SxSW several years back, I’ve not really been able to get into them.  They just leave me bored.  All competent musicians, just nothing that catches my ear.  I left after about 3 or 4 songs.

It’s funny how divisive this band seems to be, though.  Most of my friends either love them or hate them.  There’s really no middle ground.

Go see Savage Master on this tour.  Buy some stuff.


Written by The Metal Files

June 1, 2016 at 9:36 am

Holy Grail, Pallbearer, Hull, OFF!, Mutilation Rites – SxSW 2012

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Every year at SxSW I get exposed to some bands that I may have missed otherwise. This year I got to see Holy Grail, Hull and OFF!. I missed Pallbearer but have been listening to them since.

Check it:

Holy Grail – good retro US metal from San Fran. they kicked ass live

Pallbearer – tasteful doom, really loving this band

Hull – the vocals could be better, but i like their riffs

OFF! – featuring keith morris on vocals (black flag, circle jerks)

Mutilation Rites – i dislike most black metal beyond some classic bathory and such, but i enjoyed these guys live

Written by The Metal Files

March 22, 2012 at 8:16 pm