The Metal Files

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Posts Tagged ‘heavy metal

Lamb of God, Anthrax, Deafheaven & Power Trip Concert Review, Austin, TX, February 8, 2016

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I went to last night’s show solely to see Anthrax and Power Trip.  I think Deafheaven and Lamb of God are awful.  Boring, really.

Originally I wasn’t going to go then I saw that Anthrax was doing a relatively inexpensive meet and greet and I’ve wanted to meet them and to get them in The Book so I got my ticket and ordered the meet and greet.  Shortly after the M&G was announced, a local record store posted that they would be doing an in-store as well and to get anything signed, you had to buy a deck of their playing cards and no photos.  Oh well.

Doors were at 4:30PM (wow) and we were told to be there at 3:15PM.  Ultimately there were only 4 of us and we got taken to the backstage area where the band came out to say hello, sign stuff and do a few pictures and talk for a few minutes.  It was pretty obvious that Scott Ian didn’t want to be there, so I just shook his hand, had him sign The Book, a photo and my Spreading the Disease CD cover.  Charlie was checking out The Book, looked up and saw my Loudness patch and said, “I bet Loudness isn’t in here.”  I let him know that they were and that I had sigs from 3/4 of the original band.  Then he started rambling off other bands, some of them nu-metal shit, and I said that there were no bands after 1991 in here.  “Oh, cool.  Where do I get one of these?”  So I directed him to Amazon blah blah blah.  Joey and Frank were extremely nice and super chatty as was their new guitarist, Jon Donais of Shadows Fall.  I wish I had recognized him at the moment because I love Of One Blood by Shadows Fall.  I mentioned to Joey and Frank that I had first seen them on the Among tour at The Boathouse.  Scott heard me and said, “Geez, I remember that dump.  We played there a few times.”  Three to be exact, but whatever.  It was good to meet them and we were all given a deck of the Anthrax cards, a record mat, a band photo to get signed and the M&G laminate.  We were also given the opportunity to buy merch on the way out so I got a tour shirt.

Since Power Trip wasn’t going on until 6PM, I went over to Lambert’s for some awesome food and a beer as it was only 430PM when we were led back out of the venue.  I’m back at the venue are 530PM and see a bunch of friends and hang out a bit before Power Trip’s set.

I head up to the mezzanine area and sit for a few minutes.  I’ve had some back issues lately and I was seated on the back corner of the back row (only four rows in this section) and could get up as needed.  I ended up standing for most of the show as it was more comfortable.  Power Trip started promptly at 6PM and the crowd was trickling in.  I’ve seen them several times and I really enjoy them in a live setting.  I think they gained some new fans by then end of their 30 minute set.  They were solid as usual.

Deafheaven was up next and I just went back out to the lobby area to hang out with some friends.  They bore me to tears.

Anthrax came on right at 745PM opening with Fight ’em Till You Can’t from their Worship Music album, which I really liked.  Having Belladonna back in the band has been great, for me at least.  They rolled effortlessly through an 8 song set that had 2 songs from their forthcoming album, For All Kings.  I liked the 2 new tracks a lot.  They played In the End, Caught In a Mosh and Indians as well…and two covers.  FUUUUUCK.  I mean, I know they’ve always played covers live, but throw us a bone every now and then.  On some of the shows where they’ve had a longer set, they’ve included as many as 3 songs from Spreading the Disease.  HOLY FUCK I’d lose my mind if I saw Lone Justice live.  *sigh*  Oh well.  Charlie Benante is still ungodly on drums and Frank Bello is basically the Angus Young of the bass.  I’ve always loved his playing and his backing vocals are superb.  Joey sounded great, too.  Jon is a killer guitarist and played Spitz’ parts perfectly as well as his own.

After a short break, Lamb of God comes on.  I stayed for the first song and that was enough for me.  Never liked their stuff.  Bro-metal.

 

Venom Inc, Necrophagia Concert Review, San Antonio, TX, January 27, 2016

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I’m not shy about how I feel about Venom.  In general, I can’t care about their classic era.  My three favorite albums are Calm Before the Storm, Prime Evil and Temples of Ice.  Even knowing that they were playing only one song from the Demolition Man era, I wanted to go.  It’s a legendary metal band that I’ve never seen before.  Plus I knew I’d get them in The Book.

Before the show, Rodney, his friends and I all had dinner with Venom’s tour manager, John Perez, who was in Rotting Corpse and more importantly for me, Solitude Aeturnus.  John’s a good guy all around and I always love seeing him.  He and Rodney were trading some pretty incredible stories about Texas metal history.

Opening the show was Hellknife which features fellow ex-Eternal Champion member, Van Darden.  As with a few other times, I missed them again.  DAMMIT!

San Antonio’s Hod was up next.  I’ve seen them a dozen times over the years.  Hod is Hod.  You know what you’re getting and what you’re not getting.  My buddy Jake is playing bass for their live shows these days, so it’s always great seeing that maniac on stage.

Necrophagia was up next.  I never liked them but one of my closest friends was always big into them, so I grabbed a shirt for him since he missed the Virginia show.  They were solid and Killjoy works the crowd pretty well.  Still not a fan, though.

Up next was Venom and the crowd of about 200 packed up closer to the stage.  My back has been jacked up for a while, so getting in a crowd that surely was going to be moving around a lot wasn’t appealing, so I hung back and sat at the bar.  Killjoy was standing back there next to me and I had him sign The Book.

Venom (Inc), opened with Prime Evil and for the rest of the set they stuck with songs primarily from Black Metal and Welcome to Hell.  I didn’t know any of them other than by knowing the titles.  Tony Dolan, The Demolition Man, did a fine job fronting and Mantas and Abaddon were as I expected.  It was an enjoyable show and when they got to the encore, I knew all of those songs…Black Metal, Welcome to Hell, Countess Bathory and Witching Hour.

After the show, Abaddon came out and signed stuff for everyone.  Outside at their tour bus, Tony and Mantas came out and signed stuff.  They’re all really nice guys.

Added bonus of getting Louie from Devastation’s signature in the book as well.  I love getting the rogue signatures at concerts.  Great to see a lot of Austin friends and the Corpus Christi crew hanging out!

 

Holy Grail & Night Demon Concert Review, Austin, TX, December 7, 2015

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My good friends in Night Demon rolled back into Austin this week as direct support for LA’s Holy Grail.  With it being a Monday night I was a little concerned as to how well attended this show would be, but it did better than I expected.

The ND guys got to my house around 4:30PM after a long drive from Albuquerque and promptly unloaded their bags and started taking showers and just relaxing a bit before we head to the show for load in.  This is the 3rd time they’ve stayed here and they now have their own key to my house.  Great guys.

The show had 4 openers going on before ND.  Fortunately I liked two of them already, Blood for Master and Widower.  Both bands put on solid sets as usual.  Blood for Master played some new stuff from their latest disc.  Widower pretty much destroyed everything in their path.  Love seeing both bands.  I went elsewhere during the other 2 bands.  A few seconds into each of their sets and I knew I didn’t need to be there.

Night Demon comes on shortly after 10PM with their Conan the Barbarian intro and bust right into Screams in the Night and Full Speed Ahead.  The crowd of about 75 or so was very into it.  They played 7 more songs closing with Night Demon.  Great set as always and it seems like they picked up some new fans.

After about a 20 minute break, Holy Grail comes on and while the crowd thinned out a little, the faithful remained and stayed right up front.  They were really solid and I like their guitarists a lot.  The only thing I don’t lik.e it the occasional death metal growls.  They don’t need it but I guess it’s what the kids want these days.  They also played a decent cover of King Diamond’s No Presents for Christmas.  Solid set.

After load out and coming back to my house, I made tacos…again.  Night Demon loves my tacos.  haha

 

Loudness Concert Review, San Antonio, TX, November 6, 2015

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posteruseLoudness returned to San Antonio last night touring for the 30th anniversary of Thunder In The East.  I’m really surprised by that based on what happened last time and knowing it was the same promoter.  Seeing that they had slated 8 openers (again) and I’m pretty sure all were ‘pay to play’, I was worried about the show running late into Loudness’ set again.  Lots of people were.  While the last opener was playing, they were getting no respect from the crowd.  People were yelling “pull the plug!”

Loudness was supposed to be in by 1130PM but it was closer to midnight.  Barring anything stupid, they had enough time to play their full set.

They opened with Crazy Nights, Like Hell and Heavy Chains, all three from their most popular album, Thunder In The East.  The band sounded and looked great.  The crowd was very into it as well.  They followed up with the title track of the new album, The Sun Will Rise Again.  It sounded great and I bought the CD prior to their set along with a bandanna and tour shirt.

Their set was mixed up pretty well with 2 songs from the new album and everything else from the classic era, including Street Woman from the first album.  They also played 2 from my favorite album, Lightning Strikes.

It was a great set and the venue looked about half full, which I find odd from the once metal capital of the USA.  For their encore, they re-played Crazy Nights with Riot’s Don Van Stavern on bass and backing vocals.  That was fun but it would have been cool to have had them do a different song with him.  But oh well.  Great night!  There were no lowlights to their show.

I did buy the meet and greet to make sure I could get The Book signed.  I forgot to bring it with me in 2006 like and idiot.  They were all super nice and I wasn’t even too bothered that the new drummer signed the book and my Disillusion CD.  I mentioned to Yoshi and Akira about seeing that NC show and Yoshi said he remembered that one and the poor attendance.  After snapping a quick foto, I was walking away and said, “Arigato Loudness!”  All four of them stopped signing stuff and looked right at me and individually nodded and said, “Arigato!” right back at me.  That was pretty cool.

Written by The Metal Files

November 7, 2015 at 6:04 pm

Manilla Road & Graven Rite Concert Review, Austin, TX, October 25, 2015

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11057303_10153588423473560_5568181379365985049_nIt’s been quite a busy few weeks for shows and last night’s show was a last minute decision that I am so glad I made.

I got to Hotel Vegas right as Graven Rite was setting up so went outside for a bit and ran into Mark “The Shark” Shelton, who I had just seen the week prior at Frost and Fire Fest in Ventura, CA.  We spoke for a few minutes.  Before heading in to see Graven Rite, I ran into Scott from Texas Metal Underground who is one of the coolest dudes around.

I came in on Graven Rite’s third song, Bloodstone Ring.  After that they played Twisted Sister’s The Beast and it sounded good.  The closed their set with the title track from their debut EP, The Summoner’s Pit.  It was good to catch them live.

After a pretty quick stage switch out, Manilla Road comes on and I move right to the front where a couple of my friends were hanging out. My favorite album by Manilla Road is Mystification and they opened with Masque of the Red Death.  Trying to keep up with their setlists is interesting because everything is pretty much decided on the spot.  “Let’s play this one…” kind of thing.   That means the band has to be ready for anything and they were.  I was quite surprised to see so many people wearing MR shirts and singing along to their set, especially some of the younger folks I saw there.  After headbanging up front for the first 3 or 4 songs, I moved to the back with the old folks.  haha.  Plus I could hear everything better.  The whole band sounded great and watch Mark shred is such a pleasure.  Admittedly I don’t know their whole discography but really enjoyed Cage of Mirrors, The Riddle Master and Divine Victim and the others from Mystification.

I was pretty tired after the show, so I said some quick goodbyes to the band and headed home.  It was a great night though.  As an aside, I saw a lot of younger “metalheads” at this show.  A few I’ve seen at other metal shows but most seem to be, in my view, metalheads for the fashion of it.  I’d like to see some of these kids in 5 years to see if they stayed “metal” or if they’re just rolling in the trend.  And Matt, if you’re reading this, you’re not part of that crowd.  You’re one of the truest metalheads I’ve ever known.  :)

My neck hurts today.