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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Vektor -- Kansas City, MO -- August 21st, 2012

Shows like these are the reason I live for heavy metal. There is no other place in the world that makes me happier than at a metal concert. Surrounded by tons of my friends and a lot of fanatical Kansas City metalheads, Vektor put on one of the best performances ever and have solidified their place in the annals of heavy metal history. I could honestly write like a 50-page paper of why heavy metal is the greatest thing in the world right now because of this show, but I'll try and keep it brief and just about the amazing show tonight.

The thing about Vektor is that they are definitely on the brink of exploding with popularity. When I saw them a few years back, at a free show nonetheless, there was barely anyone there for them. At this show, they had a big crowd (especially for a Tuesday night past midnight) and the numbers didn't dwindle at all throughout their set. I would say there was close to 100 people or so in this tiny bar and I don't think anyone left during their set, which was amazing. During Black Future, David broke a guitar string and left to repair it, so the rest of the band kinda jammed on stage for a good 10-15 minutes. The crowd was really understanding, and let out a cheer when they did a bit of The Number Of The Best and Scavenger Of Human Sorrow. After David got everything fixed, they ripped right back into the set. We missed a couple of Outer Isolation tracks because of the technical difficulty, but it seems to me we got a bit of an extended encore.

Black Future was, of course, a killer tune. I headbanged so much during each song that my neck broke, but none more so than for Hunger For Violence. You have to mosh to that song. It's not a suggestion, you HAVE to. And everyone should be familiar with how much I don't like to mosh. Tetrastructural Minds was insane and is still my favorite track off of Outer Isolation. I think they were originally going to end with Forests of Legend, but we wanted Accelerating Universe, so they played that! It was seriously insane. So much moshing and headbanging. They were about ready to pack up but everyone kept screaming. At this time it was like 12:50 AM so they got the okay for one more, and gave us Asteroid! Killer, killer stuff.

The sound was impeccable. I could really hear each instrument and the vocals perfectly, which was surprising because I was up right in the front. This is kinda weird I guess, but I absolutely love the thick bass sound that Vektor has, and it was mixed perfectly tonight. The bass on Cosmic Cortex makes me want to rip my face off. Erik and David hit every note perfectly, and Blake on the drums is one of the most talented drummers I've ever seen, especially with such a modest kit.

The dudes were really, really appreciative of the crowd. Huge crowd on a Tuesday night in Kansas City...who woulda thunk it? Erik came up to me afterwards and laughed at my shirt of choice for the show (my bright blue and yellow "Defend Pop Punk" New Found Glory shirt :3 ) and assured me that they'd be back in KC. YEAH!

Three amazing local bands opened the show. The first to play was Meat Shank and they play awesome death/thrash. Probably the best performance I've seen by them. They were a lot heavier than they've ever been, and there were lots of people headbanging to them. They did a killer cover of Slayer's Antichrist too. They need to play more!

Second band of the night was one of my new favorite power metal bands from the area, Alsatia. They have the riffs and solo of thrash metal, but the vocals and keyboards for Rhapsody-esque power metal. It mixed very well, and the guitarist and keyboardist do that Bodom-style solo battle type thing very well!

Direct support came from Hellevate who play like (and get the reaction of) a legendary thrash band. Seriously, the vocalist has the charisma and the pipes of Bobby Blitz, and their brand of thrash was so infectious that it kind of boggles my mind how they aren't the biggest band from the Midwest right now.

Man, I just can't get over how amazing this show was. Having a ton of my friends there, some who I haven't seen in a while, just added so much to the experience. I love heavy metal so much and I will love it more than anything else for the rest of my life.

Vektor: 10/10
Hellevate: 9/10
Alsatia: 8.5/10
Meat Shank: 8.5/10


Cosmic Cortex
Black Future
(long jam while David fixed his guitar)
Echoless Chamber
Tetrastructural Minds
Dark Nebula
Hunger For Violence
Deoxyribonucleic Acid
Accelerating Universe

Friday, August 17, 2012

Upcoming religious experience: SAINT VITUS!

One of the best bands EVER, Saint Vitus, will be in Lawrence on Oct. 2nd! These guys are legendary, and they're on top of their game right now. Opening is the ever amazing Weedeater, along with Sourvein! They'll rip the roof off the Granada.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Upcoming Show: Negative Approach

Old-school hardcore punk band Negative Approach will be at the Record Bar in Kansas City on September 11th. These guys are still going strong from their days in the 80s, and are as energetic as ever! Opening is Early Graves, Spine and No Class. Don't come to this unless you wanna get bruised up.

White Wizzard -- Kansas City, MO -- August 9th, 2012

Despite it being the first night of the tour and despite the two opening touring bands not playing the first date of the tour, White Wizzard put on a phenomenal show. Even though they go through more lineup changes than a preseason football squad, the group they have now are phenomenal. Their new lead guitarists can both shred, but I was on the side of Jake Dreyer and he was melting my face in every song. There was a nice, thick, Maiden-esque bass sound to every song, and the new vocalist Joseph just added to everything. They were really appreciative and there were more than a few fans in the audience that were headbanging and singing along with a ton of the songs.

The coolest part of the night was when someone pointed out that there were a few underage kids (the venue was 21+) were watching through the windows out on the street. Near the end of their set, someone opened the door right next to the window, and during a song, guitarist Jake walked outside and started playing to those two kids! It was so awesome. My friend and I went out there and headbanged with them! I remember when I stood outside that same venue to watch Exodus in the freezing sleet because I wasn't 21. White Wizzard totally made those kids have a memorable night!

Every song they played was awesome, especially the older stuff like 40 Deuces, Over The Top and High Speed GTO. Iron Goddess Of Vengeance was really heavy, too. Just all around good sound and great performance from the band.

We didn't get Icarus Witch and Widow, who will be on later dates of the tour. Direct support came from local heavy/power metal band Ancient Creation. One guitar, bass, drums and vocalist, but they were really heavy. They're older dudes, so instead of just emulating that classic heavy metal sound, they are the real deal! Their songs Apocalypse and Bringer Of Evil were awesome, and they can really shred.

Opening the show was good ol' Vanlade. The power/speed/thrash powerhouse added a second guitarist to their lineup again, and it only added another layer of awesome to their sound. This might have been the best time I've seen them, and they ended with a cover of Steppenwolf's Born To Be Wild. Awesome!

Such a great show, even though some of the bands fell through. Next time!

White Wizzard:

Torpedo Of Truth (new song)
40 Deuces
Out Of Control
Flying Tigers
Iron Goddess Of Vengeance
Fall Of Atlantis
Over The Top
High Speed GTO

Ancient Creation included:

Bringer of Evil

Vanlade included:

Born To Be Wild (Steppenwolf cover)

White Wizzard: 9/10
Ancient Creation: 8/10
Vanlade: 8/10

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Upcoming concert: Abigail Williams last area show!

There is a giant local metal festival at the Riot Room on September 1st that has too many amazing local metal bands to remember. It's for KC Anthem's 5 Year Anniversary show, and it utilizes both the indoor and outside stage at Riot. That's reason enough to go, but Abigail Williams will be headlining the show. They are breaking up after this tour, and their last album was amazing! This will definitely be a memorable show.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Upcoming show: VEKTOR!!!

If you don't know Vektor, then you're missing out on possibly the most electrifying and amazing band of the past few years. Their first album, Black Future, is my favorite thrash album of all time. Their new album, Outer Isolation, continues their amazing streak of perfect musical output. They'll be at the Riot Room on August 21st with three of the best local bands opening for them: Meatshank, Alsatia and Hellevate! This will be an unbelievable night of metal capped off by one of the best bands around today.