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:
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:
This Mind Locked Inside This Body