Posts Tagged ‘DRI’
Upon waking up Sunday morning, totally parched and tired, Kelz and I got our stuff together and headed South towards Richmond. He was a little slower than me that morning so I drove us to Vienna, VA to stop at Vienna Music Exchange. I had met the owner, Mike, the night before and had been wanting to stop in there for quite some time. After some traffic snags headed down that way, we finally got to the store and I scored some cool stuff.
From there it was down to Richmond to Petey’s and Amy’s house. By that time, I was starting to fade a bit. I didn’t sleep that well and was quite tired by the time we got to Richmond. Petey was ready to party by the time we got there and I succumbed to doing a shot, which helped immensely even though it was tough to get down. After a couple of hours of catching up, we decided to head towards the venue and grab some quick grub at the restaurant next to The Broadberry. Our other friend, Danile, was supposed to come up for this one but unfortunately had to back out.
Upon arrival in the venue, I see Ryan and Felix from BAT. Good dudes. Richmond locals, Humungus, opened the show and musically and vocally I thought they were great. Petey said they had a bit of a Heathen vibe and I don’t disagree. Both the singer and guitarist did great harmony falsetto work and the bassist and drummer held the rhythm down just fine. The only thing I didn’t like about them was their lyrical content. Pretty silly for the some of what I could make out. Shark Castle. Drinkin’ Beer. Solid band overall and I wouldn’t mind seeing them again.
BAT was up next and delivered their Venom-esque set flawlessly as they always do. I love watching Felix Griffin play drums as he’s just a mean machine back there. I was getting pretty tired so I sat for part of their set. As I was at the table in the back of the venue, got to hang out with Mr. Ross a bit more. Sorry again, Brian, but no more Jager mixers for me!
I didn’t go up front for Cauldron. I just can’t get into them. As I mentioned in a previous review, their sound is just too thin.
And then…Satan. They had a bigger stage this time and could move around a bit. Since Danile couldn’t make it, Petey drew his face on a plastic cup and we set it at the end of the stage so he could be there in spirit. Satan got a couple of songs in and then Steve blew his head. During the change out, Russ and Sean just did a little Voodoo Child rendition and then it was right back into the set. We got a full set that night as they were shortened by a curfew or anything. Again, they were awesome. The crowd had thinned out a bit as it was a Sunday night but we remained up front for the whole set. Much like the Philly show, I had to get barraged by a person who smelled like hell. This guy smelled like a chicken house. It was fucking gross, especially when he started swinging his dreadlocks around. Luckily he only stayed up for a couple of songs, but goddamn, bathe please.
And just like that, it was over. I could already feel that little bit of sadness coming on. But it was a wonderful weekend overall with 2 of my lifelong closest friends. I couldn’t ask for much more than that.
I called for a Lyft ride to get us back to Petey’s and NWOBHM legend, John Gallagher of Raven, was our fucking driver! I saw him at the show as he’s old chums with the Satan guys. We were totally surprised and happy to have a familiar face take us home. I’ve met John several times and he’s always a gentleman. I think it was a fitting ending to the night.
Back at Petey’s house, we sat up and hatted for a bit longer and finished off his wife’s homemade beef jerky. Delicious! Then off to bed. Kelz had to get up and be on the road to Raleigh by 830, Petey had to work and Amy, Petey’s wife, had an appt, so not much sleeping in time. Amy took me the airport and that was that. Mitchfest over. I had a lengthy layover in Atlanta and my flight got delayed. Part of me was hoping for a cancellation as Satan was in town that night, too. It would have been great to catch a third show, but alas, no luck.
Long live Satan. Hope they come back in 2017. I’m hoping to catch Graeme and Steve in the Slyclad reunion in Germany and will definitely see Brian’s Alice Cooper tribute next fall in Newcastle.
Written by The Metal Files
October 27, 2016 at 6:16 pm
Saint Vitus, The Skull and Witch Mountain kicked off their latest tour here in Austin, TX Tuesday night to a moderately sized crowd at one of Austin newest venues, Grizzly Hall. This place has a great setup and sound system.
Newish Austin locals, LadyKiller opened the show with their brand of what I have seen called “Camaro Rock” to a slowly building crowd. They seemed to start off a little flat but by the middle of their 30 minute set, they were doing their thing smoothly.
Witch Mountain was up next but I missed their entire set hanging outside on the patio with some friends. I could hear them but wasn’t interested enough to go in. I had checked them out before and well, pass.
The Skull was up next. I’m a huge Trouble fan of everything they released up to and including their 1990 S/T classic. I’ve seen them 4 times now, including Tuesday’s show and really like the stuff they’re doing now. They’ve gone through some lineup changes since I first saw them in 2014 in Chicago but Eric Wagner, Ron Holzner and Lothar Keller have remained constant. Lefty Rob Wrong (Witch Mountain) is handling additional guitar duties now and for this tour in Sean Saley’s absence, they have former Poison Idea drummer Steve “Thee Hippy Slayer” Hanford. They opened the set with Trapped Inside My Mind from their 2014 release entitled For Those Which Are Asleep. Three of the next 4 songs were also from that album. They played “The Longing” from their latest EP as well before going into 4 classic Trouble songs including Pray for the Dead from Trouble’s 1985 album The Skull. The band sounded fantastic and Wagner’s voice was still as shrill as ever.
Saint Vitus were up next and I’m not much of a fan although I’ve seen them several times. Their drummer, Henry, is a good pal so I go to support. He took me to the green room prior to The Skull to get Dave, Mark and Scott to sign The Book. All were really cool guys and Scott was up front with us watching The Skull. I watched their first 3 or 4 songs and have to admit that I enjoyed them more than ever. Having Scott on vocals helps quite a bit as I’m no fan of Wino aside from his Hidden Hand stuff.
After the show I was beat. It was getting pretty late for a work night so I headed home. The tour bus that they were going to use was stuck in Dallas broke down so instead of them driving back to Dallas after the show, I had offered my place up to The Skull. They had to drive back to Dallas the next day for a show, but were happy to be able to sleep before making that drive. It was a bit surreal knowing that Eric and Ron, dudes from a band I’ve loved for 30 years, were just hanging out in my house with my cat, Taco, while I was crashed out. haha. Good dudes. I did come home for lunch and Ron had just woken up. “Your cat is awesome.” True.
Through my pal, Felix Griffin (DRI, BAT), I was introduced to former DRI bassist, Josh Pappe. I got him added to The Book as well.
Written by The Metal Files
September 29, 2016 at 7:27 am
DRI is one of those bands that I could likely name most of their albums but not know a single song title off of any of them. A good amount of my friends love them and I never gave them much of a listen. I decided the day of the show that I’d go just for the hell of it. I binged listened to several of their albums at work to get a feel for what they were all about. The later stuff, as most people know, was more metal. They could really write some riffs. Out of all the stuff that I listened to, Four of a Kind is probably my favorite.
My friends in Zero Percent were opening up the show. This band features guys who have been in the rock, punk and metal scene in Austin for a long ass time. They hit the stage and ripped through their Lonestar and whiskey infused punk set to a good response from the crowd that was starting to fill in for DRI. It was an early show so they finished up around 9PM. One cool random fact is that the guitarist, bassist and drummer all play left handed.
After a quick break, DRI hit the stage and automatically a pit happened at the front and stayed active throughout the whole show. Lots of mohawks and studded denim jackets to be found. Spike (g) and Kurt (v) are the only two originals left in the quartet that originally hailed from Houston and moved to San Francisco.
I have to say that I enjoyed their set quite a bit, even not knowing any songs. I can also hear their influence in a lot of newer bands. The venue, The Sidewinder, is run by the folks who previously ran Red 7. It’s quite a bit smaller but that hasn’t stopped them from bringing in good sized national acts like DRI, Exodus and Agnostic Front. I’d guestimate that there were maybe 125 or so folks at the DRI show, maybe a little more. I was down near the front at the edge of the pit and it never got packed where we were.
What a whirlwind of shows I have been though in the last couple of weeks. I’m tired. So tired. But it’s a good tired and my music fetish is being well served lately.
So ‘back in the day’ cerca 1984, my friend Daniel (Danile) bought Satan’s Court in the Act and shared it with Kelz, Petey and me and the rest is metal history. I’ve loved this album since it first hit my ears. Brian Ross’ vocals mixed with those awesome NWOBHM styled riffs made for a perfect album. The 4 of us have always been close friends, played in bands together and never lost touch over the years. We’re bound by metal, friendship, life events (good and bad) and have always been there for one another as needed.
Flash forward 30 years and the 4 of us still adore this album. When Satan announced a small US tour, there was no way I was going to miss it. I knew that I’d have to travel somewhere and luckily Richmond, VA was on the list…surprisingly so. So we started planning the trip. Kelz and Danile have kids and going out of town on a weeknight was going to be a little more difficult because of family and work obligations but they made it happen. I’m sure there was some sort of bribery or Jedi mind tricks with their wives. And that was that. Another MitchFest was in the works, this time with all 4 of us. I flew into Raleigh and stayed Monday night with Kelz and the fambly. Always great hospitality at their house. Tuesday morning we headed to Suffolk, VA to grab Danile and quickly headed up ti Petey’s house in Richmond. Unfortunately the wife and kids were out on errands so I didn’t get to see them this time. The car ride was as expected. Mama jokes, old stories of our younger years, gushing about metal etc. Before getting to Richmond, we decided to stop and grab a bite to eat at a BBQ place in Chester, VA. I love the NC/VA style of pork BBQ. I can’t get it in Texas. My sandwich was perfect, exactly what I needed.
We get to Petey’s and are greeted by his awesome wife, Amy. He gets home shortly after and after some adult conversation and life and things that matter, the roundtable of silliness begins again. We’re perpetually 13 years old when we’re all together and it’s a great time. Now it’s time to get ready for the show.
Satan are playing Strange Matter in Richmond which used to be Twisters and then later Nancy Raygun. I’ve seen a handful of shows there since the mid-90s and always like the place. It used to be a bit of a dump, but it had its charm. It’s been cleaned up quite a bit and I’m glad that location is still doing shows. Before going in, we park then grub at a pub on the next block. Just a good time having a meal and a couple of beers with my best friends.
We walk back over to the venue, get our swag out of the car and go in. I see my pal Tony “Dio” from NC who I’ve known since about 1997 when we met at a Judas Priest show in Norfolk. I had just seen him the week before at Rangarokkr. As we’re standing around jibber jabbering, I see John Gallagher from Raven walk in. How cool is that? I’ve never been a fan of the band but I did have lunch with him and his brother and their families in 2000 before their show at Jaxx in Springfield, VA. Nicest guy. I check out the merch table to hopefully get a Satan shirt, but no luck in my size. The cool thing was seeing my band’s 7″ on the merch table. Our label was managing the Satan tour so it was great to meet those guys.
The first band to go on is Salvacion, a band from NC which has the drummer for Volture. They were OK. I couldn’t quite gauge exactly what they were going for. The did a very uncomfortable version of Dokken’s Unchain The Night. I think I would have enjoyed them more if it wasn’t for the drummer. I get into that a little bit more when I talk about Volture.
Next up was BAT which features Felix Griffin (DRI) on drums and Ryan Waste (Municipal Waste/Volture) on vocals/bass and Volture’s Nick Poulos on guitar. They come on and run through a blistering set of thrash/speed metal songs that were all about 3 minutes long. Old school style. They were solid and Felix really ripped it up in single bass style on a 4 pc drumset. I enjoyed it and would love to see them again.
Right after BAT played, I feel a hand on my shoulder and hear a voice say my name. I turn around and it was a girl that I had dated briefly in 1991 and that I hadn’t seen since right around that time. She had seen on Facebook that I was in town and just stopped in to say hello. She couldn’t stay as her husband and kid were outside in the car. I swear she was only there for about 3 minutes and even paid to get in. I was floored by the gesture. The more I thought about it, the more it made sense. That’s the type of person she always was. Very thoughtful. It was a special moment for sure. I’m still a bit “wow’d” by the whole thing.
Volture comes on next and I hadn’t really paid much attention to them in the past. There’s just so much out there that I can’t keep up any more. The members are a mishmash of members from Municipal Waste, Immortal Avenger, Twisted Tower Dire, BAT etc. I really liked the vocals. The guy has some great pipes and the guitarists are perfect. But the drummer…I just can’t take it. He was doing way too many Rikki Rokkett type moves instead of worrying about keeping good time. I’m a drummer as well. I’m hyper critical of other drummers that I see. When he was just playing the beat and not doing dumb stick tricks, his timing was fine. But when he’d go into circus mode, the timing would fluctuate, he wasn’t hitting the snare cleanly and it would drop out of the mix and he tended to keep time on his bass drum to where he’s hitting the bass and snare at the same time. Sorry, it just annoyed me to no end. Obviously his band has no issue with it, but I would for sure. :) But again, overall they sounded killer.
And then…Satan…SATAN. I never ever thought in my lifetime that I’d get to see them live. Right as Volture ended we made our way to the front of the stage. Danile and I were right on the barricade and Kelz and Petey were right behind us. Satan opens up with Trial By Fire and Ross’ vocals are on point. He skipped the first scream in the song and I though ‘uh oh, he can’t do it any more.’ And then there it was. His patented high notes came on cue everywhere else in the song and the rest of the set. I was completely in awe as to how well he still sings. He sounded perfect. They ran though a mix of songs from Court in the Act, Life Sentence, a couple of early demos and one from Into the Future of which Brian wasn’t the singer. They added No Turning Back mid-set which was a nice surprise. Of course we were hoping to hear the whole Court album but I have no complaints whatsoever about the set. They were incredible. Ramsey/Tippins are still a formidable guitar duo and the songs on their latest album prove that. It was just such a powerful set. Still blown away as to how good Ross’ vocals are.
After the show, most people leave and we stick around to meet the Satan guys. Success! They all come out after a little break and sign swag, take pictures with us nerds etc. It was especially nice to be sitting between Sean Taylor and John Gallagher listening to them talk about gifts they’ve sent to each others kids and some “back in the day” kinds of things.
It’s been a week since the show and I am still buzzing about it. Really a once in a lifetime show. Even more, I got to spend some quality time with my three best friends. That was as important as the show. It’s really nice knowing that even if we don’t see each other that often these days, we can always pick up right where we left off. Love those guys.
Written by The Metal Files
April 24, 2014 at 9:35 pm
Posted in 2014, bat, concert reviews, concerts, dri, eternal champion, heavy metal, north carolina, nwobhm, raleigh, richmond, salvacion, satan, strange matter, the metal files, twisters, virginia, volture
It was 1986 and Metal Blade Records was practically the greatest metal label on the scene. They consistently released great compilations like the Metal Massacre and Best of Metal Blade series. Best of Metal Blade Volume 1 (1986) included Call Of The Gods by Hirax. I always loved that song but for no logical reason whatsoever did I never check them out any further. I also liked Bombs of Death from Metal Massacre 6. There’s really no explanation as to why I didn’t follow through on these guys, and after last night I feel like I missed out on some additional great metal in the last 23 years.
So about a month or so ago I read in the local show listings that Hirax was coming to Red 7. Even though I was not even remotely familiar with any of their material beyond the 2 aforementioned songs, I definitely wanted to see this show. Through the years I’ve always seen Hirax playing the Euro festivals and have read interviews with Katon W. DePena and have always respected his attitude about music. The guys has proudly been flying the flag of metal since day 1.
So I get to the club a little early to get MM6 and Best of Metal Blade 1 signed as well as my copy of “Headbangers: Worldwide Megabook of Heavy Metal” (Mark Hale, 1993). I know the club owner pretty well and he let me go in to the green room to meet Katon and the band. I was looking forward to this for a few reasons. One to meet Katon, who really is a true metal legend. The other reason was to meet Glenn Rogers, former guitar player of Deliverance. I dug those guys back in the day. When I went into the room, Katon was in there with his lovely wife, his bassist and guitarist Lance and Steve Harrison and some other guy that I didn’t know. Glenn was out and about with a friend so I would catch up with him later.
Katon invited me over and we talked for a bit just about music and such and Katon asked about my book. As he’s flipping through it reading about his band and tons of other obscure bands that are listed in the book. He signed it and my 2 CD covers and said, “Is DRI in here? The guy beside me if Felix from DRI.” Felix thought they wouldn’t be in there but I knew they were. Much to everyone’s pleasure, there was even a picture of band during the era that Felix was in it (85-90). I hung out for a bit and asked Katon if he ever had any interactions with Billy Milano, which he had. So I asked if he wanted to walk over to the club that Billy works in to say hello. We popped over there for a bit and they shook hands and caught up for a few minutes then I took them over to another club so Katon could catch up with an old friend who unfortunately wasn’t there at the time. Back to Red 7. It was great seeing the respect this guy was getting from people in the club, some of who came from Houston and I think a few from Mexico to see this show.
I really expected a much larger crowd, especially with this being on a Saturday. Typically the San Antonio crew would come up for a show like this but I only saw a few folks from that crowd there. The Sword was playing up the street for the 2nd night in a row and I can’t imagine they stole much of the crowd from this show. The club booked 4 grindcore bands to open up which I thought was a bad pairing. I didn’t go in to check out the other bands as I’m not really a fan of the grind stuff in general. While the grind bands were playing I got to talk to Glenn Rogers who let me know that Deliverance was going to do one more album with the original lineup sans the drummer.
But then it was time for Hirax. It was already around 1 or 1:10 AM but the crowd had increased. I’m guessing there were about 90 people in there. Cover charge was $15. Well worth it for me. Hirax kicked in and just kicked ass. Katon is a great frontman, reminds me a lot of Jason McMaster. Knows to to work a crowd and keep them interested during guitar tunings and such.
I have to say that I was truly blown away and really felt a bit guilty about not having checked them out deeper. But there’s no time like the present, right? Their set was cut short due to time restraints and I must say I was a little let down that Call of the Gods wasn’t on the set at all. But it didn’t matter, they were great and I hope they make their way back to Austin again.
Setlist as I remember it:
- El Dia De Los Muertos
- 100,000 Strong
- Blind Faith
- New Age of Terror
- Chaos and Brutality
- Hate, Fear and Power
- Broken Neck
- Bombs of Death
- El Diablo Negro
- Walk With Death
- Mouth Sewn Shut?
I am not so sure about the ones after El Diablo Negro.
Written by The Metal Files
August 30, 2009 at 6:10 pm
Tagged with austin, billy milano, concert, concert review, concert reviews, deliverance, DRI, glenn rogers, hirax, katon w. de pena, lance harrison, metal blade records, metal massacre 6, mexico, power metal, steve harrison, texas, the metal files, thrash metal