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Thursday, December 23, 2010

New Year's Ev(il)e

If you want to be a part of the funnest New Year's Eve celebration around, all you need is $3 (yes, just three dollars), to be at the Replay Lounge in Lawrence on the 31st, and be ready to headbang. Welcome to New Year's Evil!

Wrath & Ruin

Running the spectrum. Zombie-esque doom metal, Bigfoot-esque death metal and Undertaker-esque thrash. You won't be disappointed. Everyone will be talking about this show for all of 2011. DON'T MISS IT!

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Sword -- Kansas City, MO -- December 15th, 2010

So apparently when it is in the 30's and there's a lite drizzel of rain, the states of Kansas and Missouri are paralyzed with fear and multi-car pileups and highway closing accidents are common. Because of that, I left super early to get to Kansas City to see The Sword, and I was the only one driving above 40 MPH.

When the door's opened, I was quick to realize this show would be packed. I've only been to the Record Bar for three shows, but this one had the most people by far. It was never stuffed and I never thought I was blocking someone's view: it was absolutely right.

Mount Carmel canceled their performance, but Karma To Burn more than made up for it. The crowd gave them a great reaction, and the band really fed off it. Most of their songs were doomed-out and slow, but there were a few ragers thrown in. Only about two songs actually had lyrics, but for once, I wish it was completely instrumental. It was that good! I would love to see a full set from these guys some time. Torche wishes they sounded this good.

After a quick sound check, The Sword arrived and blasted through a truncated set. While our date had fewer songs, The Sword's performance more than made up for it. Their cuts off of their latest, Warp Riders, sounded fantastic, especially Tres Brujas and Lawless Lands. The crowd absolutely kicked into frenzy for some of their older jams, and it really got going during How Heavy This Axe and Maiden, Mother & Crone. The Sword never really let up in their unrelenting rock show, which pounded at my senses and it would've been unbearable if they played for any longer than they did. Perfect set length from them. There was constant pitting and loads of headbanging and we made sure to let the band know they'll be welcome back around these parts for a long time coming.

Oh, and the drummer for Karma To Burn smells terrible.

Acheron/Unearthing the Orb
Tres Brujas
Barael's Blade
Arrows in the Dark
How Heavy This Axe
Maiden, Mother & Crone
Lawless Lands
Fire Lances of the Ancient Hyperzephyrians
The Horned Goddess
Iron Swan
The Black River
Freya > I Need More Time (The Meters cover) > Freya
(The Night the Sky Cried) Tears of Fire
Winter's Wolves

The Sword: 9/10
Karma To Burn: 8/10

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Christmas Metal Meltdown!

Ready to take the year out with a bang?

This Tuesday, the 14th, in Topeka at That Place Bar (3701 Southwest Plaza Drive) is one of the heaviest underground death metal bands, BURIAL RITUAL. They'll be slaying faces with our own Meat Shank, Dark Apostle and Gruesome. Brutal!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Toxic Holocaust -- Kansas City, MO -- November 23rd, 2010

Great show from Joel and the boys, though it was really, really short. I think they barely just played for a half hour, but they did manage to squeeze a lot of songs in. It took a couple of songs to get the crowd kicked in, but I was headbanging and singing along to a lot of songs. I think I was the only person who knew all the lyrics to War Is Hell! Would love to see them again on a headlining tour, not just an off-date.

Setlist included:

Metal Attack
Summon The Beast
Reaper's Grave
Death Brings Death
War Is Hell
Bitch (New Song)
Lord Of The Wasteland
Nuke The Cross
Wild Dogs

Vanlade opened and slayed. Sounded even better than before. Koktopus played afterwards, but I was illegally parked so I didn't get to see 'em. Fun, but cold, night!

Toxic Holocaust: 8.5/10
Vanlade: 8/10

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Here come the Hurdy-Gurdy's!

That's right, Swiss folk metallers Eluveitie will be coming to The Granada in Lawrence on February 10th! Coming along with them are heavy metal bosses 3 Inches Of Blood, Holy Grail and System Divide. This is going to be a fun show!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Havok -- Merriam, KS -- November 16th, 2010

Although they're from Denver, I really feel like Havok is a local band and hometown heroes. They always begin or end tours here and, like tonight, on a Tuesday night a ton of people show up who are big fans and sing the words and go crazy. It was my first time seeing a show at the Aftershock in Merriam, KS and the sound system wasn't too fantastic, but the stage was really big and it's an overall nice bar/grill! It was also my first time seeing Havok with two guitarists. They came earlier this year but had just lost their lead guitarist, so this was definitely better, and the second guitarist REALLY helped their sound. All the songs sounded great, but I was really impressed by the new song D.O.A. It just might be the best straight-up thrash song written in a long time! Afterburner was a highlight, but the ending Slayer covers were insane and the most fun I've had at a show in a while! One of the best performances this year by far!

Good ol' Vanlade opened right before Havok and they sounded great as always, although they only played with one guitarist this time. While every member of the band is fantastic on their own (especially the drums!) it sounds better with another guitar to even it out. No Judas Priest cover this time, but these dudes get better and better!

Meatshank sounded fantastic considering the spotty sound system at the Aftershock. The guitarist absolutely shred his face off and the bassist is still one of the most fun to watch. They played a good mix of old and new and were very well received by everyone.

Out of the two bands I hadn't heard before, Nefirum was far and away the most impressive. Looking at the band members, you'd think they had just come in from a day at school, but they played some vicious black metal with a tinges of thrash and a hint of death. Really, really impressive.

The first band of the night was Hellevate. They don't play the kind of metal I'm a huge fan of, but they did it really well and ended with a pretty sweet cover of Black Sabbath's namesake song. Evil, but nice!

Havok set:

Ivory Tower
Morbid Symmetry
Identity Theft
Time Is Up
Fatal Intervention
To Hell
Melting The Mountain
Postmortem (Slayer cover)
Raining Blood (Slayer cover)

Havok: 10/10
Vanlade: 9/10
Meatshank: 8.5/10
Nefirum: 8/10
Hellevate: 7.5/10

Monday, November 8, 2010

Gwar -- Lawrence, KS -- November 8th, 2010

After about thirty minutes of scrubbing all this stuff off in the shower, I'm finally ready to write this review!

I missed Mobile Deathcamp because I was outside talking to my friends. Shout out to Andy from Elctrikchair. (WHO IS ON THE CD IN THE LATEST ISSUE OF TERRORIZER OMG!) As soon as I made my way in, it was apparent that the show would be packed, but I wasn't prepared. It might just be the most packed show I've been to at The Granada.

Infernaeon kept repeating that they were from the "Hollywood of death metal", Tampa, FL. And that's pretty much what they sounded like. I actually thought they sounded really good. Although the mix wasn't the best, it had a lot of energy and some great sounding solo's. They even had a killer cover of Metallica's "Creeping Death" that sounded amazing, but I was embarassed that the crowd didn't go more nutso for it. Fun stuff.

I don't think I've ever come across a more polarizing band than The Casualties. I don't know if they are true punk or just posers, but I do know this: they put on a really fun show. They're probably the closest I'm going to get to seeing a legendary punk band, and the crowd certainly acted like they were legends. Huge mosh pits and lots of singing along. All their songs were fast and good to headbang to, including the "Blitzkrieg Bop" cover they did! Good stuff.

Last time I saw Gwar, I stood far enough back not to get hit with anything. Not this time! I was absolutely soaked in every imaginable liquid and it was amazing. Gwar killed Sarah Palin and Lady Gaga, a dog, a couple of zombies, and then shot out even more blood on the crowd from a cannon. The entire venue was absolutely slick with "blood" by the time the concert ended. The setlist we got was just a little bit different than the one's that have been posted, because their new album, "Bloody Pit of Horror" comes out tomorrow. "Salamanizer" and "Bring Back The Bomb" were fun of course, but "Pure As The Arctic Snow" and the "Bloody Pit Of Horror" medley sounded fantastic as well. A chaotic crowd all around; I don't think anyone left the Granada without having their skin stained red. It was an absolute spectacle. The band sounded fantastic, the theatrics were spot on, and I can't wait to see Gwar again.

Infernaeon included:

Creeping Death (Metallica cover)
Immaculate Deception

The Casualties:

We Are All We Have
Tomorrow Belongs to Us
Criminal Class
Without Warning
System Failed Us
Heart Bleeds Black
Social Outcast
Looking Thru Bloodshot Eyes
Media Control
Blitzkrieg Bop (Ramones cover)
Kill Everyone
Unknown Soldier


1. Horror Of Yig
2. Damnation Under God
3. Hail to Genocide
4. Let Us Slay
5. Vlad The Impaler
6. Decay Of Grandeur
7. The Private Pain of Techno Destructo
8. Crack In The Egg
9. Maggots
10. Bring Back The Bomb
11. Metal Metal Land
12. Pure As The Arctic Snow
13. Beat You To Death
14. Salamanizer
15. Zombie March/Come The Carnivor/A Gathering of Ghouls/Storm is Coming medley
16. Sick Of You

Infernaeon: 8/10
The Casualties: 8.5/10
Gwar: 9/10

Friday, November 5, 2010


About that Toxic Holocaust show on the 23rd: It's at the Czar Bar in KC, not the Riot Room. Sorry for the mix-up!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Rescheduled: The Sword

The Sword, who was originally going to be at the Record Bar in October, will be coming back to the Record Bar on a rescheduled date for December 15th. Hooray!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Get ready for Thrashgiving!

Back again to lay waste to Kansas City is a tiny little band called TOXIC HOLOCAUST! It'll be their second Kansas City show this year, and we have to show them that we want them to keep coming back! It's on November 23rd at the Riot Room and Vanlande and Koktopus will open.

Hammerween 2010 -- Kansas City, MO -- October 30th, 2010

Absolutely one of the best nights I've ever had, and it was by far the best performances I've ever seen of every band tonight. There were a ton of people there and it was so much fun.

Opening the show was The Cast Pattern. Last time I saw them was opening for Hate Eternal and The Black Dahlia murder and I really didn't like them, but my tastes have expanded since them and I found them much more tolerable this time. Parts of their set totally sounded like current good hardcore bands, like Terror, but it was still a bit too breakdown-y for my tastes. They had great energy, though!

The next band was Koktopus and they pulled out a great set. The vocalist was dressed as Jesus (only the beard was real!) and the bassist had a costume on as well. They went through stapled like Old Man River and Deathbed and another fantastic cover of Venom's Witching Hour. They ended their set by putting on Kiss masks and doing a Kiss cover and I am totally an X-generation child because I didn't know which song it was! But it was a great performance throughout!

The last time I saw At The Left Hand Of God was at the American Waste Festival last June and I think they take the prize for "Most Improved Band" since I last saw them, and they were good the last time I saw them! All their songs are really catchy and the guitarists and even the bassist have some serious skills. They played some new stuff and some old stuff and filmed the entire thing. A great performance and I'd love to see them again.

This is the first time I've seen Serated at a venue where I could actually hear them clearly and it made a huge difference. At the Riot Room their guitars were reduced to a wall of noise, but at the Beaumont I could hear all the groove and beats to their music and it really surprised me. What didn't surprise me is that their bassist is still a beast. Seriously, I think every Serated show should have a 10-minute bass solo in it. Dude is seriously talented. And thanks for the shout-out during your set, bro's!

The only band I'd never seen before tonight was Diskreet and it wouldn't be completely accurate to call them a band; they were more like a ball of pure energy set to death metal. The singer was covered in fake blood and bounding around the stage like a madman. Both the guitarists had some crazy solo's and the sound was magnificent all the way through. Diskreet just might be the biggest current local band from this area and man, they definitely deserve it.

My broseph's in Troglodyte absolutely laid waste to Kansas City tonight. They played a perfect setlist and they sounded fantastic. My favorites sounded great like Don't Go In The Woods and They Walk Among Us, but Hit By The Henderson's was insane. I almost wore myself completely out from headbanging too hard. A Madball cover and two GG Allin covers were thrown in for good measure and it was a devestating set.

It's Hammerween, so OF COURSE Hammerlord has to headline! Stevie was dressed up in a wrestler costume doing his best Macho Man Randy Savage impersonation and the smile never left my face. We all know by now that the instruments and the vocals for Hammerlord are mythical in a live setting, but you really have to see it to believe it. Screaming along with Tombstone Piledriver and Creating Destruction is always fun, but I think The Ballad Of Rusty Tomaski just might be my new favorite Hammerlord live song. It's just brutal. Best Hammerlord performance I've ever seen!

In the end, Hammerween (to me) was a huge success. There were a ton of people in attendance, every band was great, the people were great, and it really made me genuinely happy to know that the KC metal scene is like one big brotherhood. Bring on Hammerween 2k11!

The Cast Pattern included:

Shut Your Homeless Mouth

Koktopus included:

Old Man River
Witching Hour (Venom cover)

At The Left Hand Of God included:

From Coffins Choirs Rise
The Tears Of Blackmail Are Sweet

Diskreet included:

Infernal Throne
We Are Legion

Troglodyte included:

Troglodyte Rises
Don't Go In The Woods...
Skunk Ape Rape
Bite It You Scum (GG Allin cover)
Die When You Die (GG Allin cover)
Back Of The Bus (Madball cover)
Ric Flair's Hair
The Only Good Hippie Is A Dead Hippie
They Walk Among Us

Hammerlord included:

Creating Destruction
Storm The Castle
Demon Fever
Tombstone Piledriver
The Ballad Of Rusty Tomaski
Dead City Radio
Wolves At War's End
Halloween (Misfits cover)

The Cast Pattern: 6/10
Koktopus: 8/10
At The Left Hand Of God: 8.5/10
Serated: 7/10
Diskreet: 9/10
Troglodyte: 10/10
Hammerlord: 10/10

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Just in time for Thanksgiving

Another pretty "eclectic" tour will be hitting Aftershock in Merriam, KS on November 16th. Wretched will be headlining, and thrashers Havok will be supporting, along with Armed For Apocalypse. Opening the show will be KC's own speed-demons Vanlade. A diverse bill, but Havok alone should make it worth the cost!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

KC Metal on!

I sent an e-mail to the guys at about how much I love the local metal scene here, and they did a piece on it!

Check it out!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Early Man -- Kansas City, MO -- October 18th, 2010

Not a particularly long concert tonight, but it certainly was a good one. I'm glad I wore my Suicidal Tendencies long-sleeved shirt, it looks like every show I go to for a while will end with a cold night. Anyways:

Walked into the Riot Room with my friend and sat in the bar to make it through Serated. I just don't get this type of music; it's basically just nu-Pantera worship. Definitely not my thing, and judging from the crowd reaction, definitely an odd choice for an opener.

First of the touring bands was Bonded By Blood, and apparently the vocalist is new. New, as in I think it's someone different than the vocalist who sang on their latest release which came out in August. Not my favorite vocals for a thrash band, but the guitarists more than made up for it. Lots of crazy and long solo's. I'd like to see them again.

The main reason I went to this show was for UK's Evile. I think it was their second or third full-fledged US tour and I made sure to let them know that we wanted them back in KC as much as possible! At times, they sounded just like RIB/SOH-era Slayer. At one point in one of their newer songs, I really did think they were covering Slayer. Thrasher was menacing and amazing, just like I hoped it would be, but I think the highlight was definitely We Who Are About To Die. I thought it'd be too long, but I didn't want it to end. Definitely up there on my "to-see again" list.

Ending the night was Early Man. I didn't really care for them when I saw them open for Iced Earth a few years ago, but this show was definitely a different experience. Lots of headbanging from everyone. I think Early Man is one of few thrash bands today that invoke a feeling of the '80s while still being completely original and refreshing to listen to. They're a great fit in-between Bonded by Blood and Evile. Some great solo's during their set as well. They'll be back in KC on February 11th with Bonded By Blood too, opening for Death Angel, and I'll be there to catch their set!

I also picked up a cool Evile shirt!

Early Man included:

Death Potion
Brainwashed At Birth
Feeding Frenzy
Beware The Circling Fin


Infected Nation
We Who Are About To Die
Now Demolition
Enter The Grave

Bonded By Blood included:

Immortal Life
Feed The Beast
Mind Pollution
600 A.B. (After The Bomb)
Prison Planet
Exiled To Earth

Early Man: 8.5/10
Evile: 9/10
Bonded By Blood: 8/10
Serated: 5/10

Monday, October 11, 2010

The Prince of Darkness returns!

Ozzy Osbourne has been playing some fantastic setlists lately, and he is returning to the Sprint Center in Kansas City on January 22nd! Opening the show will be former Guns n' Roses guitarist Slash, who has also been playing some great sets! Best news: cheapest tickets for this show are less than $30!

The Sword - Canceled

Due to their drummer leaving the band in the middle of their US tour, The Sword has canceled all its upcoming tour dates, including the one in a few weeks at the Record Bar in Kansas City. They are currently in the process of rescheduling all dates.

Envy -- Lawrence, KS -- October 10th, 2010

I can't believe a show like this came through Lawrence. There was a great crowd for the entire show, and each band put on amazing performances. Although the crowd was over-the-top violent at times, I had a fantastic experience.

Opening the show was And So I Watch You From Afar from Belfast, Ireland. I didn't know what to expect from them, but they were definitely fun to watch. They're like an instrumental version of The Fall Of Troy, but heavier. The two guitarists were all over the stage and out in the crowd. Great stuff, I'd love to see them again. 9/10

The band I was most excited for was Touche Amore. Their brand of emotional hardcore is infectious and I finally got to sing along with "Honest Sleep" which is always fun. Lots of singing from the crowd and a pretty good pit! I can't wait to see them whenever they come through town. 9.5/10

Trash Talk got the biggest reaction of the night, and definitely the most violent pit of the night. Not the most violent I've ever seen, but I had to break up several fights (punching/choking fights) and there were lots of stage dives and whatnot. The music wasn't too terrible, but they just seemed out of place on this bill. Not too bad, but I was too busy protecting my crotch most of the time. 8/10

The headlining band was Envy from Japan. They looked like regular guys, not a band that combines metalcore with Explosions In The Sky-type post-rock. Their songs were infectious and had the expansive soundscapes of post-rock with the emotional outbursts of energy from bands like Coalesce. Great stuff, and really loud. Lots of noise from the keyboards, but it was offset by beautiful clean vocals. Amazing. 9/10

And So I Watch You From Afar included:

Set Guitars To Kill
If It Ain't Broke...Break It
D is for Django the Bastard

Touche Amore included:

Honest Sleep
And Now It's Happening In Mine
Negotiating The Charade
Always Running, Never Looking Back
I'll Get My Just Deserve
And I'll Deserve Just That

Trash Talk included:

Flesh & Blood

Envy included:

Chain Wandering Deeply

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

An odd tour

NY hardcore heavyweights Full Blown Chaos will be on a short tour in November and are ending it in Kansas. On November 19th they'll be at the Lizard Lounge in Wichita, and on the 20th, they'll be at Aftershock in Merriam, KS. Support comes from The Autumn Offering, and Knights of the Abyss, which makes this a...erm...electic tour.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Valient Thorr - Kansas City, MO -- October 3rd, 2010

The weather is getting cooler and that means the good tours should be kicking up all over the country. Valient Thorr has a long history with the Kansas City/Lawrence area since 2001 and with the rabid following and one of the best shows I've ever seen, it's not hard to see why.

Opening the show on a high note was Hammerlord and thanks to the Record Bar's wonderful sound system, they sounded better than any other time I've heard them. Ty and JP absolutely shredded their guitars to pieces and I had a lot of fun screaming along to "Tombstone Piledriver" with Stevie. A short opening set, but it just makes me want to see them even more!

It was my second time seeing Howl this year and overall. The last time was a few months ago in Lawrence on a weird bill consisting of Howl, Phobia and Black Cobra. I gotta say that Howl sounded much better this time. Very, very heavy and the vocals sounded absolutely menacing. I feel like they will continue to get bigger. A tour with Weedeater would be MASSIVE.

I'd actually never heard of Junius before, but apparently there were a few people in the audience who had waited a long time to see them live. I was blown away. The best way I can describe their sound (and I'm probably doing a horrible job) is: Alcest if they had doom/sludge instead of black metal. Or maybe Explosions In The Sky if they were pissed off (and with vocals!). Tons of great moments in their set that made me audibly say "Wow" more than once. Great stuff.

Valient Thorr's set wasn't so much an excellent musical performance as much as it was a bunch of fans getting together, having fun, and being happy whilst listening to one of the most energetic bands in the business today. Valient Himself kept the crowd smiling with positive reinforcement before and during songs, and some quirky anecdotes. "Did you know the Record Bar was the first place in America to have automatic paper towel dispensers?" I do now. During one song, he went out into the crowd, motioned for everyone to sit on the floor, and row/headbang along with the music. It was just random things like this that made this one of the funnest shows I've seen. The music was great, too. If AC/DC was metal and awesome, they'd be Valient Thorr. I can only hope they return from Venus to bless the KC area with their metal again soon.

Valient Thorr included:

Mask Of Sanity
Tomorrow Police
Night Terrors
Vision Quest

and a whole bunch more.

Hammerlord set:

Creating Destruction
Storm The Castle
Tombstone Piledriver
The Ballad Of Rusty Tomaski
Wolves At War's End

Valient Thorr: 10/10
Junius: 9/10
Howl: 8.5/10
Hammerlord: 9/10

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Scion Garage Fest -- Lawrence, KS -- October 2nd, 2010

It ain't no Scion Rock Fest, but Scion Garage Fest was a really fun time with friends and some pretty cool bands. There were about 35 or so bands spread out between four venues, but I only visited two venues and saw five bands. For free, and it was a steal.

The first band was at Liberty Hall and were called Best Coast. A large crowd showed for them, and my friends and I chose to sit up in the balcony for their show. The first half of their performance was alright, but it seemed like every song sounded the same. There was no bass player, but the guitarist who was "acting" as the bass player was getting really into it, but the two girls doing vocals/guitar and drums seemed to recycle the same couple of types of music over and over again. Only when the 40 minute set reached the halfway point did they really step it up and start playing really catchy lo-fi dream-pop. A little nine year old girl even got up on stage to play tambourine, and she was singing along with every word! That was pretty funny. Best Coast certainly wasn't the worst band I'd ever heard from that genre. 7.5/10

Liberty Hall completely emptied out after Best Coast, but I stayed to see the band after called The Ponies. To be honest, I thought their guitar tone and the vocals sounded like a less energetic version of The Hives, who I love. I enjoyed them a lot, but at about halfway through their set, I left because they had started to get a bit repetitive. Not too bad at all! 7.5/10

One of the bigger crowds of the day was at the Jackpot. I walked down there and caught the last half of Happy Birthday's set. They sounded pretty good, a faster version of Best Coast with some guitar solo's thrown in! The vocalist was pretty crazy, too. He was drunk, high, or both. It blew my mind that a guy with that long of hair wasn't playing metal! 8/10

The Jackpot was crammed for one of the "headliners" of the day, The Gories. Two guitarists and a drummer with only two floor tom's. Interesting, but they played intense and straight-up punk n' roll. It almost sounded like a more punk versions of 50's rock n' roll bands. With a song with lyrics like, "Hey hey, we're the Gories!" how can you not have fun and jump around. A couple of cool guitar solo's and the crowd went wild. I think if they had a full drum kit their sound would be much better because although it sounded great, it just sounded like something was missing. Like the band was kind of empty. I only stayed for about half their set, but it was truly an experience. 8/10

The only band I had listened to prior to the day of the fest was The Raveonette's, so I was pretty excited for them. There weren't a lot of people there; enough so that it was a good-sized crowd, but not so many that it was uncomfortable. Their brand of noise rock/shoegaze/punk had touches of everything from The Jesus and Mary Chain to Joy Division in it. When they weren't blasting full force with a full band, they sang some great songs with just the bassist + the two guitarists playing tambourines, or each guitarist playing and singing their own solo song. I think the girl's solo song might have been a cover. They were great and full of energy; more than once I got chills up and down my spine. They ended their set, the house lights came on, and the roadies were taking down equipment, but the crowd kept cheering and the band actually came back out and played two more songs. I've never actually seen that happen before! Great stuff, one of the best sets of 2010! 9/10

Again: it ain't no Scion Rock Fest, but give me a stellar Garage Fest line-up like Scion did this year and I'll keep coming back.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Nachtmystium - Canceled

I know this is way late, but I just got back from driving up to the Riot Room: Nachtmystium has canceled tonight. Don't go looking for a show.

Monday, September 27, 2010

We are not Japanese, we are not American, we are not even human beings! We are...


Peelander-Z is returning to Lawrence at the Replay Lounge on October 13th! Their live shows are the best in the world and include, but aren't limited to: human bowling, audience members performing their instruments, giant monsters, confetti, makeshift instruments, running outside to play, and more! If you don't attend, you're missing the most fun you'll have all year!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Upcoming Week: Hellbastard, Two Jucifer shows

Just a reminder:

Hellbastard will be at The Mouth (6th and Alabama) in Lawrence on Sept. 21 with a lot of good local bands. $8, all ages, no curfew. If you don't go to this show, you don't have any punk cred.

Jucifer is playing two shows for us this week as well. They'll be at the Replay Lounge in Lawrence on Sept. 23rd and at Davey's Uptown Rambler's Club in Kansas City on the 24th. Both shows are under $10 and they will be amazing performances.

Friday, September 10, 2010


The Black Tusk show coming up will NOT have Fu Manchu or It's Casual playing as well, instead now local bands The Cast Pattern and Hester Prynne will be opening.

More psychadelic metal landing at KC

Love 'em or hate 'em, The Sword are coming back to Kansas City after their opening set for Metallica back in 2008. I dug them, but I thought that they'd be a lot better in a smaller venue. Looks like they heard me! They'll be at the Record Bar in Kansas City on October 24th. Should be heavy!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Heavy Metal from another planet!

After a very entertaining and rocking set opening for Mastodon a few months ago, Valient Thorr will be at the Record Bar in KC for a headlining show. With them will be Howl, Junius and our very own Hammerlord! It'll be on October 3rd, a Sunday!

Where it all began - Blue Oyster Cult

At the Old Settler's Festival in Olathe on Saturday, witness one of the fathers of heavy metal! Blue Oyster Cult will be performing and it will be a free concert!

Details here:

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Troglodyte -- Kansas City, MO -- September 6th, 2010

Happy Labor Day!

First band was Chaos Interval. They're a three piece grind band with no bassist, and they definitely don't need one. Their sound was really clear and the drummer and the guitarist have some serious skills. The singer did a great job too and he was all over the place. A really fun band to watch, I hope to see them play more than a short opening set some day. 8.5/10

Set included:

Entrails Of A Dead Era

The last time I saw Marasmus was back in January opening for Nile, and they're still as heavy as ever. The vocalist sounds great and as a band, they sound a bit like Cannibal Corpse, but it's all fresh and heavy. They should open up every death metal show! 8.5/10

Set included:

Drowning In Whiskey
Gnostic Decimation
Shitting Teeth

The one let-down of the night was definitely Serated. It seems they have quite a following in and around Kansas City, but I don't get it. I just hear a Pantera/Down-sounding band and I cannot get behind clean vocals in extreme metal, especially the mid-90's James Hetfield version. The sound was pretty muddy and neither of the guitarists were anything special, but their bass player has to be one of the best I've ever seen. Dude is insane. Other than that, not much here. 6/10

Everything was perfect for Troglodyte, and it might have been the best time I've seen them. They played a ton of material, including my two favorite Trog songs. They brought out some lights and a couple of fog machines. It's almost like Bigfoot himself was performing in a swamp for us! Great stuff all around, like always. I need more Trog! 10/10

Set included:

A Piece Of Me Is A Piece Of You
Hit By The Hendersons
Skunk Ape Rape
Don't Go In The Woods...
Beyond The Valley Of The Troglodyte/Troglodyte Rises
Bite It You Scum (GG Allin cover)
Die When You Die (GG Allin cover)
Back Of The Bus (Madball cover)
The Only Good Hippie Is A Dead Hippie
Ric Flair's Hair
They Walk Among Us
Entombed Yeti Hand

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Coliseum -- Lawrence, KS -- September 1st, 2010

Sludge is a funny word. I've heard it describe bands whose music ranges from slow-down and dirty all the way to atmospheric bands that use acoustic guitars. Tonight could've been called a punk show instead of a sludge show, they both fit the music that came to Lawrence tonight.

The first band was Mansions, a local sludge/post-whatever band that was seriously one of the most boring bands I can remember. I can listen to Sleep do "Dopesmoker" for 63 minutes, but they at least have crushing riffs. The first two mansion songs were 7 - 10 minutes in length with no vocals and basically one riff repeated over and over. It wasn't even heavy. I retreated to a seat to watch a seriously fantastic Thai action flick (The Protector) and they added vocals it seemed, but it was still pretty poor. 4/10

Burning Love was next, all the way from Canada. They played to the 20-ish people at the Jackpot as if they were playing to a crowded room. Their brand of hardcore punk definitely had the aesthetics and some of the sound of rock n' roll and protopunk bands like The Stooges. I was so ecstatic to hear something different that I enjoyed their set immensely. Their bassist gave some great groovy lines that permeated their sound and made it really fun to listen to 'em. Highly recommended if you're bored of typical hardcore. 8.5/10

Burning Love set included:

The Needle
Burning Love
Don't Ever Change

Before they announced they were from Kentucky, I could have guessed Coliseum was from the southern US. There are parts of their sound that likens them to Kylesa, Torche or Mastodon, but instead of forming at a High On Fire show, they would have formed at a Black Flag show. When they weren't crushingly heavy, they would speed stuff up to where some mosh pits would break out. More crust punk than sludge, in my opinion. Great stuff and the lead guitarist/vocalist seemed really grateful we all showed up. They play around here a lot, and I'm sure people will keep coming to see them. 8.5/10

Coliseum set included:

No Benefit
This Mind Locked Inside This Body

Skipping Kansas: Suffocation

The Faceless
Through The Eyes Of The Dead
Decrepit Birth
Fleshgod Apocalypse

10/15 Worcester, MA @ The Palladium (Rock and Shock)
10/16 New York, NY @ Gramercy Theatre
10/17 Quebec City, QC @ Imperial Theater
10/18 Montreal, QC @ Foufounes
10/19 Jonquiere, QC @ Place Nikitoutagan
10/20 Toronto, ON @ Opera House
10/21 Poughkeepsie, NY @ The Chance
10/22 Detroit, MI @ Harpos
10/23 Chicago, IL @ Clearwater Theatre
10/24 St. Paul, MN @ Station 4
10/25 Milwaukee, WI @ The Rave
10/27 Denver, CO @ Summit Music Hall
10/28 Salt Lake City, UT @ TBA
10/29 Las Vegas, NV @ The Farm
10/30 Pomona, CA @ The Glasshouse
10/31 Los Angeles, CA @ The Whisky
11/1 Phoenix, AZ @ The Clubhouse
11/2 Albuquerque, NM @ Fusion Factory
11/3 Amarillo, TX @ Club Khaos
11/4 Tulsa, OK @ Marquee Theatre
11/5 Austin, TX @ Emo's
11/6 Ft. Worth, TX @ Ridglea Theatre
11/8 Tampa, FL @ Brass Mug
11/9 Jacksonville, FL @ The Pit
11/10 Raleigh, NC @ Volume 11
11/11 Philadelphia, PA @ Polaris
11/12 Springfield, VA @ Jaxx
11/13 Allentown, PA @ Crocodile Rock

Maybe we'll get an off-date with some of the bands at the Riot Room in between Milwaukee and Denver?

Friday, August 27, 2010

Sludge invades Lawrence

If you want to bang your head as hard as you can, Lawrence is the place to be. Black Tusk will be coming back to the area after a pretty impressive performance with Weedeater earlier this year. They'll be at the Jackpot with stoner rock legends Fu Manchu on September 13th. Get heavy.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Looking to get your face ripped for cheap? Troglodyte will be headlining at the Riot Room on September 6th along with Serated, Marasmus and Chaos Interval for only TWO DOLLARS. That's right, some of KC's best death metal bands for only TWO DOLLARS! You have no reason not to come.

Enthroned -- Kansas City, MO -- August 24th, 2010

I can cross another band off my "To See Before I Die" list. Destroyer 666 was absolutely mind-blowing, and every band tonight brought their A-game. Truly a satanic spectacle.

The sole opening band was Witchreign, which is made up of 4/5 members of one of my favorite KC-area bands, Vanlade. But instead of epic speed/power metal, Witchreign is dirty blackened thrash. They seemed a bit sloppy, but they still threw in some pretty good solo's that went over well. At the end, they brought up one of the guitarists from Enthroned and did a killer cover of Venom's "In League With Satan." Remember, if there is a black metal show, a Venom cover is mandatory. 8/10

I am a huge sucker for brutal/slam death metal, but when I first checked out Pathology when I heard they'd be on this show as a replacement for Shining, I was less than impressed. But it turns out that they are actually pretty good at what they do. It's too bad that the first video on YouTube that comes up for the band is one of their worst, because the rest of their set was fantastic. The singer looked insane while the band was going, and I was impressed with every one of their members. Great stuff if you're into the genre. Don't let the Victory Records label be off-putting. 8.5/10

Finally. I can't believe I finally got to see Destroyer 666. One of the first metal bands I'd ever heard, and I finally got to hear all these songs I've been listening to for years. Although they didn't play one of my favorite songs (Satanic Speed Metal), the entire set was chock full of memorable songs that I had to scream along with and bang my head. "Sons of Perdition", "Raped", and "Black City - Black Fire" were some of the best times I've had at a concert, but the greatest moment had to be screaming along with KK during "The Eternal Glory Of War." They came a long way to KC, and we made sure they knew we appreciated it. During "Australian and Antichrist", some guy who I've never seen at shows before was filming D666 using a flip-phone (amazing quality, am I right?) right up front and center. KK slapped the phone out of his hand and pushed the guy back. After the song, he said something like, "Metal is about here and now. I'm playing for all you dedicated people who came out to this show tonight, not for the fifty million on YouTube in the future!" It was pretty metal. I really hope I get to see them headline in the future. 10/10

After heading back to the bar and talking to Jeff from Troglodyte for a good while, I caught most of Enthroned's set. They made a mistake picking Destroyer 666 as an opening band, because after that spectacle, it's an achievement just to take the stage with any sort of gusto. They played their brand of punishing black metal and had a few great songs with some awesome solo's, but ultimately were just pretty good. They eventually won the crowd over and their almost 20 years of experience really showed; they sounded great. The vocalist was also really animated and fun to watch. They capped a brilliant night of (almost all) black metal. 8/10

Destroyer 666 set:

Rise of the Predator
A Breed Apart
The Last Revelation
Sons of Perdition
I Am Not Deceived
Blood for Blood
Genesis to Genocide
Satan's Hammer
Black City - Black Fire
Australian and Antichrist
I Am The War God
Eternal Glory of War

Enthroned set included:


Pathology set included:

Age Of Onset
Among Giants
Legacy Of The Ancients

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

American Carnage -- Bonner Springs, KS -- August 23rd, 2010

Every band on the bill last night had played Kansas City within the last year, but by the bands performances and the crowd reaction, you'd think it was the first time in twenty years.

Testament opened the show while it was still light out, but they whipped the crowd into a frenzy. Chuck Billy is the only guy, metal or otherwise, that can get away with looking so cool playing a mic stand like a guitar. Alex Skolnick also played for the crowd and showed off just what an incredible guitar player he is. I wasn't sure he was playing with Testament on this tour, but I was so glad to see him up there on that stage shredding. It was great to hear songs like "Dog Faced Gods" and "Practice What You Preach", but "D.N.R. (Do Not Resuscitate)" still reigns as one of the best Testament songs ever recorded! They need to come back and headline very soon. 9/10


For The Glory Of...
More Than Meets The Eye
Dog Faced Gods
The New Order
Trial By Fire
Practice What You Preach
D.N.R (Do Not Resuscitate)
3 Days In Darkness
The Formation of Damnation

After a near-perfect concert at the Beaumont club last December, everyone was salivating for more Megadeth. The only let-down of the show were Dave Mustaine's vocals on some of the songs. Don't be afraid to let the beast out, Dave! Other than that, the music was spot-on and it was so much fun singing along with all of Rust In Peace. Chris Broderick was probably the most talented guitar player on that stage last night, and it showed during one of my favorite guitar solo's of all time for the song "Tornado Of Souls." He hit each note perfectly. Highlight of the set was Five Magics. It sounds fantastic live. They also brought out Vic Rattlehead to rouse the crowd during Dawn Patrol. Best Halloween costume ever! 9.5/10


Holy Wars... The Punishment Due
Hangar 18
Take No Prisoners
Five Magics
Poison Was The Cure
Tornado of Souls
Dawn Patrol
Rust In Peace...Polaris
Head Crusher
A Tout Le Monde
Symphony of Destruction
Peace Sells
Holy Wars (reprise)

During Slayer's set at Mayhem Fest last year, the soundboard got fried which resulted in horrendous sound for the band and ultimately gave us a ruined set. Karma was in full swing tonight, because Slayer sounded spot-on through their whole performance. I was on the left side of the stage, but I could still hear all of Kerry's guitars, as well as Jeff's. Tom came over and played to our side as well, a few times. The pits were huge and vicious the entire time Slayer was on stage. Every song, even the World Painted Blood openers, sounded loud and clear on stage. The best songs were the cuts off of Seasons In The Abyss that I thought I'd never hear live, such as "Hallowed Point", "Skeletons Of Society" and even "Temptation." Throwing in "Aggressive Perfector" at the end of "Raining Blood" was the best surprise I've ever gotten. My neck was sore, blood was on the ground, people are still screaming as they walk to their cars. Yep, Slayer played. 10/10

World Painted Blood
Hate Worldwide
War Ensemble
Blood Red
Spirit In Black
Expendable Youth
Dead Skin Mask
Hallowed Point
Skeletons of Society
Born of Fire
Seasons In The Abyss
South of Heaven
Raining Blood
Aggressive Perfector
Angel of Death

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Hammerlord -- Lawrence, KS -- August 20th, 2010

...after what seemed like an entertaining eternity, a surprisingly large crowd was still intact for my two favorite KC-area local bands: Hammerlord and Troglodyte. You wouldn't think a speed/thrash metal band would go good with a deathgrind band, but you can't help but bang your head with a smile to each band.

Trog took the stage first. The sound at the Jackpot sounded great, even better than the Bane show before it. Although some of the mic cables were sketchy, it hardly mattered. It felt good to finally hear some death grunt vocals, and Trog are some of the best at it. Opening with "Beaten and Eaten", Trog ripped through a ton of their songs (although ignoring my two favorites: "They Walk Among Us" and "Don't Go In The Woods...") including fan favorites "Ric Flair's Hair" and "The Only Good Hippie Is A Dead Hippie." They played a couple I haven't heard before which sounded great as well. They got a fantastic response and it showed on their performance. Great stuff overall. 9/10

Setlist included:

Skunk Ape Rape
Ric Flair's Hair
The Only Good Hippie Is A Dead Hippie
Die When You Die (GG Allin cover)

The last time I tried to catch a headlining Hammerlord show, it got cut short because of time. Fortunately, we didn't have that problem tonight, and it was literally probably the best performance I've seen at the Jackpot and one of the most fun I've seen from any band, local or national. I've said it time and time again, but to say the members of Hammerlord are talented at what they do would be the understatement of the year. The guitarists, Ty and JP, traded solo's a la Slayer, except I don't think Slayer could handle the insane amount of tapping and intricate guitar solo's. Absolutely jaw-dropping. I also finally got to hear "Metalization" for so long and I screamed along with Stevie and we headbanged together. Coolest dude ever! If there's one thing you should take away from this review, it should be that Hammerlord are one of the best metal bands in the country today. Period. They are professionals at what they do, they have mind-boggling talent, and in a live setting, they are nigh-unmatched. Bang the head that doesn't bang! 10/10


Creating Destruction
Dead City Radio
Storm The Castle
Tombstone Piledriver
Anomaly Rue
Demon Fever
Wolves At War's End

Bane -- Lawrence, KS -- August 20th, 2010

I got to the Jackpot just at 6:30 and this weekend was the first weekend after school started, so it took me a while to find a parking space. I lucked out and got one right in front of the venue. The line-up for this show was Bane/Trapped Under Ice/Cruel Hand/Alpha & Omega. It was also all ages. The place was definitely the most packed I've ever seen the Jackpot. Also - undoubtedly the most violent crowd I've ever seen.

Alpha & Omega was the first band of the day and they played metalcore/hardcore (the good kind) but were kind of slow which made for plenty of hardcore dancing. Now, these hardcore dancers weren't the scene kids who pick up change for three seconds then fix their hair, these guys were out to injure whoever. And they did. A girl got knocked out from something and had to be carried out of the venue. But enough about that, let's talk about the music. Alpha & Omega did a good job as a warmup band. When they had faster "hardcore"-sounding songs, they were great. Other than that, nothing special. 7.5/10

First band of the night I was excited to see was Cruel Hand, and the crowd must've felt the same way. For the rest of this show, the pit, the stage diving, the crowd surfing, the singing along was all at a fever pitch. Cruel Hand played a more hardcore punk style and was even better than Alpha & Omega, but were still warming the crowd up. 8/10

The band I was most psyched to see was Trapped Under Ice, and it looked like the majority of the crowd came for them as well. The crowd sang just as much as the vocalist, with some kids even coming on stage to sing for most of a song. I can tell Trapped Under Ice embraces the hip-hop ethos that most east coast hardcore bands seem to have, but it actually made them more interesting to watch. They certainly had the most "groove" of all the bands and even had some solo's! (At a hardcore show? Blasphemy!) Great stuff. 8.5/10

Bane are legends in the hardcore scene, and they play the part well. At times they were definitely the most melodic band of the night, especially when they played some new songs. But I got chills more than once when they started playing a song and the crowd exploded, singing the verse into the mic. Great hardcore that I'd love to see again. They've got the formula down, and it shows. 8.5/10

Set included:

Ante Up
Count Me Out
Can We Start Again

During all this, there were severe thunderstorms in Lawrence that made it humid outside and unbearably hot inside. After the crowd cleared out, there was so much sweat on the floor it looked like someone had spilled water everywhere. But that was cleaned up, and then came part 2 of the night...

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Boris -- Lawrence, KS -- August 15th, 2010

1. Farewell
2. Rainbow
3. 8
4. Luna
5. Statement
6. Floorshaker
7. a bao a qu
8. 16:47:52
9. Akirame Flower
10. Pink
11. Korosu
12. 1970
13. Untitled (last track of Smile)

I can't really think of a witty/smart way to do this review because I'm still recovering from the mindshattering awesomeness that is Boris.

I'm so glad they still have Michio Kurihara with them, the dude is a genius. Better Boris collaborator than Merzbow, if I do say so myself. As it was the last time I saw them, his earth-shattering solo on Rainbow was a highlight. It just comes out of nowhere during one of the most relaxing songs of all time and just smacks you in the crotch with a frozen sledgehammer over and over again.

The sound wasn't as loud as I remember, but still one of the loudest shows I've ever seen. Also, after Akirame Flower, the band had to pause and just do reverb for about 10 minutes because something was messed up with Wata's peddles. But it just made what came after it that much sweeter. So happy they threw in Korosu and 1970 which are even better live than on tape. And Floorshaker > A Bao A Qu was probably the best part of the show. I still get chills thinking about it. Concert of the year.

Russian Circles was pretty good as well; really surprising. For an instrumental progressive/post-rock band, they had some awesome heavy parts. Even when the guitarist's pedal's messed up, they used that time to joke around with the crowd. I did recognize "Death Rides A Horse" as the second-to-last song they played.

Opening the show was KC's "Life And Times". They are a standard shoegaze/post-whatever band that fit in with Russian Circles perfectly. Heavy in spots and their bass player was awesome.

Boris: 10/10
Russian Circles: 8/10
Life And Times: 7.5/10

Friday, August 13, 2010

A triple shot of Lawrence metal shows!

Coliseum will be returning to Lawrence at the Jackpot on September 1st. Mansions will be opening for them.


One of the craziest shows of the year will undoubtedly be Japan's own Envy at the Jackpot on October 10th. Along with them is Trash Talk, Touche Amore and And So I Watch You From Afar. Go. To. This. Show.


And last but not least...THEY'RE BACK! Sad about Behemoth cancelling? Well, one day before at the Granada...get ready for GWAR.

The Casualties
Mobile Deathcamp

Be sure to wear white.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

CANCELED: Behemoth

Behemoth's frontman Nergal was diagnosed with something serious, so Behemoth has canceled all future dates, including the date at The Granada on November 9th, so he can get better. Hope he recovers soon!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Gruesome Twosome: Coming For Real This Time

Instead of just Alice Cooper or Rob Zombie, but shock rock giants will be at the Independence Events Center on October 6th. Murderdolls are opening.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Between The Buried And Me -- Lawrence, KS -- August 5th, 2010

Frontman Tommy Rogers of Between The Buried And Me (BTBAM) announced to the crowd that the show tonight in Kansas will be their last for the year. Although they didn't pull out anything special, they played spot on their entire set for another jaw-dropping performance.

Sandwiched in between Underoath and Blessthefall, this might have just been one of the oddest lineup's I've come across in recent memory. BTBAM does not incessantly tell the crowd to mosh, tell them to sing along, chide them to crowd surf, like blessthefall did so much. BTBAM's music speaks for itself and it incited just as much moshing and surfing as the other bands. The guitar solo during "White Walls" and the bass solo during "Disease, Injury, Madness" were nothing short of awe-inspiring, as they should be, Tommy's vocals were a welcome respite from the clean singing, emo-type vocals used by every band other than BTBAM.

Although it was clear most of the kids in the crowd were young and there for other bands, BTBAM made a huge mark on them.


(B) The Decade Of Statues
Disease, Injury, Madness
White Walls

Underoath - n/a
Between The Buried And Me - 9/10
blessthefall - 4/10
To Speak Of Wolves - 5/10

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Sonic Kansas City Beatdown

Thrash legends DEATH ANGEL will be making an appearance in Kansas City in the beginning of 2011! February 11th at the Riot Room. Support comes from Lazarus AD, Early Man, Bonded By Blood and Hexen! Thrash!

Twice in 2 weeks!

Fresh off the Warped Tour, Every Time I Die will be returning to the Kansas City area...again! They will be at the Bottleneck in Lawrence on August 18th. Support will come from Season To Risk, Mansion and The Cast Pattern.

Friday, July 30, 2010

The Apostasy Returns!

They couldn't stay away for too long.

Behemoth returns to The Granada in Lawrence on November 9th in support of their album "Evangelion" with a killer line-up including Watain, Withered and Black Anvil. Their show a few years back with Job For a Cowboy and Gojira was amazing, so this should be even better!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Skipping Kansas: Triptykon

This sucks. Triptykon, the band started by Tom G. Warrior after Celtic Frost dissolved once and for all, is touring the US in October with 1349 and Yakuza. Celtic Frost came here in 2006 to the Bottleneck (my first metal concert) and again the next year opening for Type O Negative at a sold-out show at The Granada. They need to come back!

10/06 – New York City, NY @ The Gramercy Theatre
10/07 – Boston, MA @ The Middle East
10/08 – Baltimore, MD @ Otto Bar
10/09 – Philadelphia, PA @ Polaris
10/10 – Montreal, QC @ Les Foufounes Electrique
10/11 – Toronto, ON @ The Opera House
10/13 – Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop
10/14 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Mr. Smalls Theatre
10/15 – Detroit, MI @ The Majestic Theatre
10/16 – Chicago, IL @ The Bottom Lounge
10/17 – St Paul, MN @ Station 4
10/19 – Denver, CO @ The Marquis Theatre
10/21 – Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
10/22 – Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theatre
10/23 – San Francisco, CA @ Slim’s
10/24 – Los Angeles, CA @ El Rey Theatre
10/25 – Tucson, AZ @ The Rock
10/27 – Tulsa, OK @ The Marquee
10/28 – Fort Worth, TX @ Ridglea Theatre
10/29 – Austin, TX @ Emo’s Outside
10/30 – Houston, TX @ The Warsaw

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Mammoth Grinder: Rescheduled!

Mammoth Grinder is coming to KC after they dropped form a Lawrence show with Lewd Acts.

Mammoth Grinder
Roam Alone
Harsh Reality
Attention Seeker

August 5th @ Scion Lab (behind Grinder's/Crossroads in KC!)

Vektor -- Kansas City, MO -- July 26th, 2010

Every so often, there is a concert where you have an absolute blast because you recognize all the songs, sing along with them, and actively engage with the performers on stage to make a night memorable. You leave the venue and you play the songs over and over in your head for the rest of the night and you can't listen to the album versions anymore without wishing you were back at that concert, banging your head and slamming with your friends in the pit.

And then there's a Vektor show.

The thing that makes Vektor stand heads and shoulders above the rest of the playing field is that while they are perfect on album, they are above perfect on stage. They recreate each piece of art (I refuse to call them just "songs") down to its most minuscule details and makes them even better on stage. Every song they perform (tonight was all from the best thrash metal album of at least the past ten years, "Black Future") is instantly recognizable and catchy in its own way. Not once are you left wondering which song they're playing or when they're going to get to a song you recognize. "Black Future" is a masterpiece, the musicians who performed it are geniuses, and to see them perform these amazing musical achievements live is something everyone should be truly grateful for.

Each song was memorable in its own right, but each song also had moments in them that stood out. Screaming along with "Black Future", wondering in amazement how someone could make such a beautiful song during "Accelerating Universe", and opening up the pit with friends during "Hunger For Violence" just to name a few. I won't say it's just the small things that made Vektor so good, but every single movement of every single song was just absolutely mind-blowing. Without a doubt, Vektor is the absolute best live band that is touring these days, not just because of their technical ability, but because these songs sound even better live.

Talked with Blake (whom I told about how my grandparents know his family) and Erik afterwards. Apparently their next release is done being written and will be half new material, half re-recorded old material. Afterwards, they'll make the third album which may be a concept album.

I can't really do justice to the other bands tonight in this review. It wouldn't be fair:

Vanlade was really fun. Played a few songs I've never heard. "Life By The Blade" and "Blood Eagle" are still awesome to sing along with and their cover of "Breaking The Law" will always be fun.

Mitnal was kind of disappointing. The most one-dimensional guttural vocals I've ever heard and their music sounded more like a wall of noise. Had a few worthy moments.

The Tards were more clear sounding this time, but it just made me realize that they really want to emulate Kill 'Em All Metallica way too much.


Black Future
Forests Of Legend
Destroying The Cosmos
Accelerating Universe
Hunger For Violence

Vanlade included:

Blood Eagle
Life By The Blade
Breaking The Law (Judas Priest cover)

The Tards included:

Give Me The Guillotine

Vektor: 10/10 (tied with Celtic Frost for best live performance I've ever seen)
Vanlade: 9/10
Mitnal: 5/10
The Tards: 7/10

Monday, July 26, 2010

Vote for your favorite KC Metal Band!

The Pitch is doing another poll to determine KC's best bands and the metal genre looks like this:

At the Left Hand of God
Sharp Weapons

And you can vote for more than one! Do it!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Black Cobra -- Lawrence, KS -- July 21st, 2010

My streak of almost dying from heat exhaustion at shows continues. After a sweltering performance from Black Cobra, Phobia, and Howl inside the Jackpot, I was sopping wet with sweat. But it was well-earned not just from the heat, but from how fantastic the concert was.

"Someone has to live there," says Howl's frontman Vincent when he mentions that they're from Rhode Island. Apparently, over on the northeast coast, you get a free Buzzov*en album whenever you buy groceries. They were dripping with Buzzov*en/Weedeater/etc. worship that halfway through their set, I wish they would change it up a little bit. While they were certainly heavy, I was sorely aware of the absence of guitar solos. Too many songs sounded the same and, for the first time I can recall, the bass absolutely dominated in the mix. Odd, but they still pulled off a decent set. They know how to get heads banging.

I've seen some odd pairings in shows, but nothing quite like this. Phobia stood out as the more extreme/faster of the three bands, but most of the crowd came for their set. It was a blast of fresh air, but it seemed the band was going a little through the motions, although they seemed to get really into it halfway through the set. Lots of pitting and even a few stage dives let them know just how welcome their grindcore was. As they were starting to put their gear away, the crowd kept yelling for more, so they gave the grindcore faithful a well-earned encore. Phobia will always be welcome back.

I can't believe I was considering leaving before Black Cobra's set. I decided to stay and it was the best decision I've made in quite some time. Matt Pike would be proud: Black Cobra sounded just as heavy and had as many riffs as High On Fire, but they only had a guitarist and a drummer. Couldn't believe how loud two guys could get. They were heavy when the tempo's slowed and made everyone's neck sore when they decided to get fast. This fantastic two-piece didn't let up one bit and it was really one of the better performances of the year so far. After their set, I shook their guitarist's, Jason's, hand and said, "Calling you the heaviest band in the world would be an understatement." And what an understatement it is.

Black Cobra:

Five Daggers
Red Tide
Negative Reversal
Storm Shadow
Swords For Teeth


Bring The War
Savannah's Assault
So Full Of Hate
I Reject
Fuck What You Think
Drunken Spree of Violence
Death To False Punk
Cheap Life?
Ultimate Suffering
Rise Up
Get Up And Kill
Blood Sport
Let's Get Pissed

Black Cobra: 9.5/10
Phobia: 8/10
Howl: 7/10

I've got something to say!

The Misfits are returning to Kansas City! No word yet on support, but it's still a ways off.

November 24th at the Beaumont in KC.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


The huge BlackDiamondSkye tour will be hitting Kansas City at Sandstone on October 2nd. See three legendary bands in their prime!

Alice In Chains

Lamb of God -- Kansas City, MO -- July 19th, 2010

Personal opinion and taste aside, I honestly believe that Lamb of God is the biggest American metal band right now. Following Slayer in the 80s and Pantera in the 90s, Lamb of God incites crazy crowds wherever they go. On one of the hottest days of the summer, they brought a huge tour to the Beaumont Club and each band brought a different genre of metal and each band performed really well.

First band up was 3 Inches Of Blood. I saw them on Ozzfest 2007, but that was in the midst of a torrential downpour, so it was good to see them without a distraction. Although I was off to the side at the Beaumont, the sound was pretty good all night long. I think they'd be better if they still had their old screamer, but Cam Pipes and company did a fine job. I haven't heard any of their new stuff, but it fit in well with their old stuff. Deadly Sinners is awesome live and The Goatrider's Horde is one of the best! I hope they come back soon, but I won't hold my breath.

I've had a chance to see Hatebreed before multiple times but I've always skipped them. Since the first time at Ozzfest 2007, I've been turned on to real metalcore and good hardcore, so I was kind of anxious to see how they'd be. First off, let me say that Jamey Jasta is lying if he doesn't take a huge influence from Biohazard, More than once, I could tell there were some hip-hop overtones. Other than that, Jasta is a great frontman and he worked the crowd throughout their entire hour-long set. At one point, he said, "When I count to three, the people on your left and right are Cardinals and Raiders fans!" which was just priceless. He also dedicated one of their songs to Peter Steele, which was the first I've seen. They played the Beaumont with Type O (and 3 Inches of Blood!) on a Jagermeister tour a couple years ago, and Jamey said it was bittersweet. But you couldn't tell that. They tore through a set that left everyone smiling.

It's no secret that Lamb of God are the biggest American metal band right now. I have no doubt in my mind that in 5 years, they will easily sell out any venue they headline, from clubs to amphitheaters. I'm not the biggest fan of their music; at times I found it just going through the motions. Almost like they wrote songs just to "sound like Lamb of God". But that might be because I'm not a fan. When they did songs that really got the crowd going, such as Set To Fail, Now You've Got Something To Die For, Laid to Rest and Redneck, they were pretty fun to watch. I don't know if they need more old or new songs in their set, but if they had more fast songs, they'd be greater live. But that's just my opinion. From the number of mosh pits and crowd surfers, it's clear that Lamb of God were on the top of their game tonight.

Lamb of God:

In Your Words(?)
Set To Fail
Walk With Me In Hell
Now You've Got Something To Die For
Ashes Of The Fall
Dead Seeds
Laid To Rest
Black Label

Hatebreed included:

Betrayed By Life
You're Never Alone (maybe)
I Will Be Heard
Destroy Everything
In Ashes They Shall Reap (maybe)

3 Inches Of Blood:

Battles And Brotherhood
Trial Of Champions
Deadly Sinners
Goatrider's Horde

Review to come.

Lamb of God: 7/10
Hatebreed: 7.5/10
3 Inches of Blood: 8/10

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Coming Up: Nachtmystium

Psychadelic black metal band Nachtmystium will be returning to Kansas City near the end of September. With them will be Zoroaster, Dark Castle and The Atlas Moth. Personally, I wish they'd focus more on the black metal side of their sound when picking out touring bands, but it still should be a good show.

September 29th
The Riot Room

Dark Castle
The Atlas Moth

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Vektor: now FREE!

'nuff said.

The Tards

Skipping Kansas (but coming close!): Cattle Decap./Devourment

What a line-up. Well, at least the two big bands are really awesome.

Cattle Decapitation
Knights Of The Abyss
Burning The Masses
Son Of Aurelius

The closest dates would be:

October 5 – Tulsa, OK @ The Marquee
October 24 – Omaha, NE @ Sokol Underground
October 25 – Denver, CO @ Marquis Theatre


Upcoming Concert: Stupid fast tech. death

You either love Brain Drill or hate 'em, but they will be hitting the Kansas City area on August 24th. No venue is confirmed yet, but I'd bet on the Riot Room.

Brain Drill
Flesh Consumed
Halo Of Gunfire

Friday, July 9, 2010


An announcement for another Hammerlod/Troglodyte show is a fantastic announcement indeed.

The night before Halloween, KC will be laid to waste by some of the best bands the area has to offer.


Look at that lineup. That's hot.

October 30th
The Beaumont Club
Kansas City
All Ages

$10/$12 for under 21
$6 if you come in costume!

Gravehill -- Kansas City, MO -- July 8th, 2010

Genre's of music I saw at last night's show:

Slam Death Metal
Brutal Death Metal
Death Metal
Blackened Thrash

Pretty good mix.

I arrived at the Riot Room as Syphilic was finishing up. Just one guitarist, one mic, and one drum machine. It set the tone for the next few bands. Not as brutal as, say, Devourment, but it got the job done.

Next up was Intracranial Butchery, but he had Clay from Cemetery Rapist do vocals for him. He had a bit of technical difficulties working his drum machine and guitar pedals and it carried over to his performance, but there were some bits that were great. Clay did an excellent job too.

First band I was really excited to see was Cemetery Rapist. Yeah, pornogrind is a joke genre, but the way Clay does vocals is kind of impressive, considering he doesn't use voice altering equipment at all. His sound was the best of the pornogrind/slam bands. It was just dumb fun.

First band with more than one member was Garoted. This Garoted was not the same deathcore/grind band from KC, but a straight-up death metal band from Nebraska. They said they'd be playing more in KC from now on. They sounded pretty good, even a tinge of black metal at times. The drummer is insane, too. Looking forward to lots more of them.

I've never seen Othis before and I was kind of eager because they're on a couple of good shows coming up. However, they didn't seem into at all. They looked really bored on stage and seemed like they were just going through the motions. Not a good first impression at all.

Koktopus is always good, and they've gotten better and better each time I've seen them. This was probably the best time. The guitar tone and volume were just perfect. Throwing in a sick cover of Witching Hour only helped. Really awesome stuff.

Cardiac Arrest from Chicago was co-headlining and they slayed. Mixing death and thrash, they had an infectious sound and got everyone headbanging. Finally had a band with more than just guttural death growls.

Last but certainly not least was Gravehill from California. They dressed up like the kvltest of Norwegian black metal bands, but their brand of blackened thrash metal had enough punk in it as well to incite the only moshing of the night, as well as insane amounts of headbanging. I really, really hope I get to see Gravehill again. One of the best bands of the year.

Syphilic: 7/10
Intracranial Butchery (feat. Clay from Cemetery Rapist on vox): 7/10
Cemetery Rapist: 8.5/10
Garoted: 8/10
Othis: 5/10
Koktopus: 8.5/10
Cardiac Arrest: 8.5/10
Gravehill: 9.5/10

Review to come. Holy shit, Gravehill was awesome.

Gravehill included:

Rites Of The Pentagram
Decibel Ritual
In League With Satan (Venom cover)

Cardiac Arrest setlist:

Insanity's Grip
Mind and Body Deteriorated
Make Them Die Slowly
Carnage Your Fate
Embrace The Aftermath
Affliction Of The Beast
Right On...Fuck Off!

Koktopus included:

Drink The Fuck Up
The Wrath Of Koktopus
Witching Hour (Venom cover)

Garoted included:

Blackest Blood
With The Hammer
Heretic Fire

Cemetery Rapist included:

New Song
Preteen Bitch With The Itch For Dick
Slant Eyed Sex Slave
63 Fag Body Bag
Death by Ruru