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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Band Review: These Charming Cobras

The band is aptly named,since they are deceptively chill, belying venomous undertones and musical subversity. Upon first hearing them, I was enraptured by the simple, catchy hooks and vocals so smooth they border on sedative. However, the get-stuck-in-your-head guitar is distorted and full of attitude. The vocals, although aesthetically pleasing, are also more than what they seem. The lyrics are a trifecta of funny, sexy, and scary themes that characterized the lyrics of Alice Cooper. Speaking of trifectas, the band is just a trio. Don't be fooled by the size of the band. just like real snakes, it's the little ones that will really get you. For instance, full orchestras are the biggest bands out there, but I usually can't even stay awake for a whole movement (unless it's Wagner, but that man was an evil musical genius.)

This music appeals to fans of Pop, Surf Rock, Indie, Punk, and all the nagging subgenres in between. The CD, Dime Sized Deaths,  would make a most excellent soundtrack to your next house party or high-speed police chase. The album art is reminiscent of the tricolored, stick-figure style of Punk classics such as Sex Mad by Nomeansno or Gypsy Punks by Gogol Bordello. I don't know if there's much more I can say about the art... What you see is what you get.

So, in a nutshell, it's mass-appealing Punk Rock with a variety of musical influences. You can check them out on bandcamp, but they put on one hell of a live show. Five stars outta five.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Rock On: An Office Power Ballad

I could already tell by the title that this book would be about Rock n' Roll for yuppies. (I didn't even see the subtitle, an office power ballad, until now.) However, it defied my low expectations and proved to be well-written, poignant, and most importantly, relatable.  

It is simultaneously a glorification, a mockery, and an accurate portrayal of the music industry. The author has the jaded yuppie wit of an office goon, and the heartbreakingly sincere passion of a rocker. The result is a bittersweet chronicle of a huge record company during its swan song. I made the mistake of reading this book in a library, which is unfortunate because I was constantly shushed for laughing so much. Although most of the humor was funny because it happened to someone else, I don't pity the author. If anything, I envy him. Not only did he have a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but his writing skills far surpass my own.

Kennedy had the blessing/curse of working for an industrial giant that brought everything from ephemeral pop sensations to musical revolutions to an entire generation. He, like many others, went down with the ship, but unlike many, he lived to tell of it. 

In a nutshell, it is an autobigraphical account of a kid who dreamed of being a rockstar and instead got a white collar job at the record label that employed his idols. His misadventures were bizarre, stressful, and (since they didn't happen to me) amazingly funny. Four stars outta five. 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Title? I don't need no stinking title.

For once, I am the bearer of good news. A local Hardcore group, Scarless, are playing Vans Warped Tour in Las Cruces this Friday. (I knew it was only a matter of time.)  Other Metal bands in the line up include Born Of Osiris, Chelsea Grin, Impending Doom, and  Miss May I. Otherwise, it appears to be a blend of Pop-Punk and quasi-Rock. You know, bands like Yellowcard. Yuck.  Personally, I'm a huge fan of Impending Doom. They are, quite simply, deafening and insane.

Speaking of which, if you don't want to go to Las Cruces  just to see those guys, you can check them out at Launchpad. It's an all ages show, but drinks are available for ancient fossils such as myself. God, it's good to be 21. Doors open at 7 PM, tickets are $12, and remember to tip your bartender. Yummy.

So much for Las Cruces and Albuqurque. If you happen to be going the opposite direction, there is Metal Reign In The Northern Mountains, only $5 to see six bands. It's all happening this Saturday at the Quail Ridge Inn at Taos. Roadtrip, anyone? 

While my thoughts are on Taos, I must mention Skate In Da Paint, happening July 15th and August 26th. The only skate park in Taos is falling apart and scheduled to be demolished in the near future. Therefore, while the old park is in it's dying days, the Youth Center is making the most of it's last hours to raise funds for a new park. There's going to be tons of art, giveaways, competitions, and other cool stuff for the skater kids.   Being a skater myself, I can attest to the profound lameness of having no skatepark. Help the kids out, yo.

Wait a minute... I'm talking about youth centers, Metal shows, skating, and fundraisers. I'm pretty sure my life is the plot of a live action family film from the 80's. Son of a freaking bitch. 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Wake Up Dead

You know that Megadeth song about a really brutal hangover? I'll never understand it, because I rarely get hangovers. I guess the Booze Gods are rewarding me for my piety?
Anyway, I missed that punk show in Albuqurque because I spent all day getting my ID, but the booze gods gave me further libations in the form of a Metal bar show in Santa Fe, so glory be to the saviors.

These Charming Cobras are a Punk Rock trio with a variety of musical influences, the most prominent of which is, in their own words, "Agitated Guitar Rock". To the best of my limited abilities, I can detect the same simple catchiness, insane loudness, and twangy guitars that characterize Surf Rock. The vocals are deceptively charming (heh), belying creepy and abstract lyrics saturated with dark metaphors. I love spookiness, but I admire the ability to make it appeal to a mass audience even more.  Even people who think they don't like Punk end up liking These Charming Cobras. Plus, the band members are super-nice. Charmed, I'm sure.

Obelisk are best described as "Party Sludge." Somehow, they mangage to be simultaneously lethargic and intense. The melodies are deep, low, brooding guitar hooks and the drumming is equally heavy. The vocals are unmistakably Metal, a perfect balance between screaming and growling. Apparently they have a Demo, as I discovered approximately five seconds ago. It's about freaking time.

Serial Hawk, hailing from Seattle, is Stoner Metal cranked up to awesomely painful volumes. Their music is purely primal, from the caveman-esque drumming to the creepy, chant-like vocal style. If the dudes who made Stonehenge were Metalheads (and there's no evidence to the contrary), I'm sure they listened to something like Serial Hawk before they sacrificed hot chicks to the Dragon Lord or some shit.

I may not be hungover, but all those rum n' cokes are wreaking havok on my motor skills. If anything, I might still be a little tipsy. Can you imagine seeing a show like this for your 21st? I have a bruise on my sternum from repeated impact with my chin (headbang responsibly, kids) along with some other mysterious wounds, but otherwise I'm alive and well. Holy crap.

I think this warrants saying again: GLORY BE TO THE SAVIORS.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Brothers In Arms

As I've mentioned before, Animals As Leaders were recently robbed. They have been deprived of several custom guitars, some gear, and even their freaking vehicle. (However, I was just informed that they retrieved the car and one of the guitars, so mad props to the LAPD). If you have any info on the rest of their stuff, you can contact them at

Unfortunately, Animals As Leaders were not the only band who got screwed over recently. Eat A Helicopter, a local favorite in the Metal scene, were also jacked. The lost hundreds of dollars worth of merch, so show a little love. Usually, when a band needs financial help, I tell fans to buy some swag, but... Yeah, their swag was stolen. It's a really fucked up catch 22.

Last but certainly not least, there are matters even more pressing than material posessions. For all of my beloved readers, all four of you, I'm pretty sure at least one of you reads Illogical Contraption. In case you don't, there was recently a tragic motorcycle accident that resulted in a fatality. The passenger, Nikki, is still in the process of recovery. Since the dearly departed was not only her husband but her only source of income, donations would be appreciated for the ever-mounting hospital bills, via
 If you can't spare any funds, at least keep her in your thoughts and send some positive vibrations her way. I never met the girl, but I can already tell she's worth it.

You know, I rarely get a chance to get on a soap box, so I'm totally jumping on this opportunity. Sure, I get a little preachy about the importance about supporting local music, but this is different. It's times like this when we need to show support in a more tangible, real way. My comrades are going through a hard time. Many of them I never met, and probably nevr will. It may seem we have nothing in common besides our impeccable taste in music. But even if a non-Metalhead was in need, I'd spread the word. Say what you will, but I am totally my brother's keeper. That's part of being a Metalhead. Music can and will always be there for you, but it's ultimately just sounds in the air. It's the people behind it that really matter.

Ick, no wonder I stray away from soapbox lectures. Seriously though, I know that adversity is all around. Stay strong, comrades. :)

Upcoming Shows

A few days ago, I thought I'd just post a single half-assed entry and leave it there for a fortnight. However, fate/Metal/ the internet had other plans. I'm lots of fun and bad with numbers, so I'm pretty sure it's four posts and counting at this point. Well, here ya go.

Domestic Violence is best described as Super Punk Rock. They're so awesome that even people who don't like Punk music are hooked, if only by morbid curiosity. They do have music online, but quite frankly, it will never do them justice. This is an act you have to see live to truly understand the experience. It's kind of like Shock Rock for the Hardcore crowd. Whoah, I thought Metal logos were supposed to be illegible. I can't be sure I'm reading the rest of the line up correctly, but it looks like Colour Me Once, Leaky Faces, Robots Eat Brains, and Society Unknown. The first three words on the flyer are "Punk" and "All Ages", and honestly that's all I need to hear. 

I know I give Santa Fe and Albuqurque alot of cred for their contributions to the Metal scene, but it would be blasphemous to neglect our neighbor Taos. Taos is best known for it's hot springs, wicked ski slopes, crazy hippies, and insane parties. This shindig is aptly titled Metal Reign In The Northern Mountains. The extremely talented Eulogies Of The Forgotten are playing, and I can attest to their awesome shredding abilities.  Obelisk hails from my hometown, and they describe themselves, quite fittingly, as "Party Sludge".  From Sacrifice To Survival will kick your ass, musically speaking. Portrait Of A Mastermind is intricate yet heavy, plus they have a pirate song. If that doesn't shiver your timbers, nothing will. There's two other Metal bands too, so that's just $5 for 6 bands. Wicked. 

So much for June. If you need to take a breather, you can chill during July and start August off with this. As soon as Monday, I will be old enough to see all of the bar shows. I've already gone mad with my newfound power, albeit premature at this point. What could be better than booze and a concert? Maybe if there was some hotties involved, I'd say I was in heaven...

...Oh my! Thank you, Gods of Metal. \m/

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Last Minute Update

So... You may or may not remember my chemically altered post from 2 am last night (this morning?). Regardless, there is a change in today's concert. See this flyer? It's a liar.

 Unfortunately, the Victory Heights comeback show is going to be sans- Victory Heights. I know, that's retarded. On the plus side, The Untold Hour are going to be replacing them. For some reason, they don't have any music online, but apparently their influences range "from Slayer to Asking Alexandria to Beethoven", so I like them already. The rest of the line-up is sick anyway, so everyone wins.

And in other news, Whitechapel released their new self-titled album on the 19th, but I was too fat/lonely/poor to even notice. They claim that this is their best material to date, but I'm not going to believe them until I aquire said album.

Th-th-that's all, folks.

Rave, Reggae, Rock

This post is named after a shirt I got from the mall in high school. I think it was from like, Claire's or Hot Topic or some equally corny establishment. It just said "Rave Reggae Rock" in neon colors on a cool tank top.  Anyway, I just got back from a Rave at the very decent hour of 2:18 AM.  It was pretty cool, but I felt self conscious because I thought I looked like a "prosti-tot". I'm not a teenager who dresses like a skank, I'm just a hot chick who happens to be short. Plus, I just a had a nice bowl of marij-- Um, a nice bowl of ice cream, so I was having a pretty good time.

And for the record, I did headbang to dubstep. The rumors are true. Stop yelling at me. Even so,  I've had an epiphany. The audiences at raves are pretty pissed off, even though the music is all uppity. However, Metal audiences are pretty pumped, even though the music is morbid. The fuck is up with that? How can a grown ass man wear so many shades of neon pink and still manage to be mad?

Well, this blog is all about Metal, at least in theory, so I guess here's some upcoming shows for all of you mongrels.

Victory Heights is having a "Comeback Show", which sounds like a euphemism for "Reunion Show". I don't actually know. Regardless, they sound pretty good, so this concert seems legit. Besides,  I can attest to the awesomeness that is Scarless, as well as Forever An End. Each of these bands is some version of Metalcore, and I know approximately jack-shit about the rest of the line-up, but for $7, I'm not complaining. The venue is Amped Performance Center, so don't come drunk or bitchy or they'll throw your dumb ass out. And you'll deserve it.

Tomorrow, there's this show, which is gonna be totally sick. Futilitarian is trippy, intricate Instru-Metal, whereas Bear The Nightmare is kind of like Metalcore, but a little cooler. Don't know the other two, but it doesn't matter because I will be ONE DAY too young to see them anyway.

This show is actually the day of my birthday, so it's my gift to myself. $4 for a Punk show and a bar? Fuck yeah. That's so awesome that it's stupid.  

Local band Xmortis is also going to play at Albuqurque's Launchpad on Sunday, September 2. There is no flyer yet, as the event is pretty distant in the future. In fact, no-one even knows the rest of the line up yet. But Launchpad has pretty high standards, so I'm sure it will rock. Besides, the whole shindig is a benefit for the Save The Music campaign, sponsored by VH1. Big-shot corporations like that don't take their concerts lightly. Even though I don't have many details, I do know that tix are $10 in advance and $12 the day of.  So, get a headstart on that, comrades.

Fuck, I'm about to barf, so be content with what I give you, ya drunk fools.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Let's Try This Again

Last post was super-false, but my computer bit the dust, so I had to use an ancient monstrosity that runs slower than hell. Anyway, now that my horrible incident of terror is over, I can bring you a (slightly) higher quality of writing. It's still going to consist entirely of random stuff I should have said a long time ago, and in a more aesthetically articulate manner, but I'm too fat, lonely, and poor to care.

First of all, the Tech-Death/ Aliencore band Rings Of Saturn are dropping a new album on Nov. 20th. The album will be named Dingir, after the Sumerian word for "diety" or sky".  Their first album, Embryonic Anamoly, set the bar pretty high, but Dingir seems promising, as evidenced by this sampler.  And as is usually the case with Tech-Death, the album art is as intricate as the music itself. Awesome.

Meanwhile, for those of us who need something to do until November, there's the Slaughter Survivors tour. It hits my neck of the woods at August 16th, but the tour is also hitting Denver, New York, Hollywood, and other big-shot cities. The line up is amazing. I can't brag enough that I actually went to high school with Fields Of Elysium, who happen to be one of the biggest bands in New Mexico, Metal or otherwise. Fallujah appeals to a similar fanbase, but they are a more atmospheric style of Metal.  Weslandia were the worthy winners of a recent Battle Of The Bands, and they also happen to be a Christian Metal band. Don't be talking smack or I'll stab you with my crucifix. The rest of the line up is pretty rad, but I can't do them justice. You'll just have to see the show.

On a far more depressing note, someone jacked the gear belonging to Animals As Leaders. As in, they punked the instruments, equipment, and even the freaking vehicle. So if some sketchy ass-hole on the street tries to sell you a suspiciously awesome guitar at a low, low price, you have my blessing to kill him. Meanwhile,  if you have any info on their stuff, you can contact them at

I'm really burnt out, so I can't really think of anything else that pertains to Metal. Well, except that the new episodes of Metalocalypse are freaking hilarious. And I have such a huge crush on Toki Wartooth that it truly makes me sad that he's not real.

This post is sad... I'm just gonna listen to Muknal and OD on store-brand Mountain Dew. Peace.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Pre-emptive Strike

My 21st birthday rapidly approacheth. As such, I have made an educated guess that I will be incapacitated for approximately a week thereafter. So this one post will have to last you a while, which is unfortunate because it obviously sucks.  I would post flyers for upcoming shows, but my computer is acting infuriatingly slow, so you will be content to read about whatever Metal-esque thing pops into my head.

For starters, the ridiculously talented Savage Wizdom are currently in the process of creating a new album. They were cool enough to give me a sneak peek of the new material, and I have to say, it totally rocks. It still has the traditional Power Metal vibe of their previous album, No Time For Mercy, but has been refined to be a little heavier. As soon as I aquire a functional camera, I can present you, dear reader, with video evidence of their musical prowess. The closest comparison I can make, musically speaking, is to Helloween: It's basically traditional Heavy Metal, but faster and somewhat Thrash-y. On the down side, all this time in the studio means less time on the stage. They are making themselves scarce for concerts, but rumors abound about a possible show at El Rey Theater in the near future. As soon as these rumors are confirmed or denied, I'll update it.

HN-88 have just released their new album as well, which is available for download. You have to pay for it this time, because their first album, This Is Not The End, was something they just handed out  to everyone for free. They were trying to spread the love of music or something. Damn dirty hippies.
Xmortis has a new bassist, Soul To Rest has broken up, and Grinkai is M.I.A. Therefore, I have nothing interesting to tell you. I have writers block like a beast. However, in my own defense, I know I'm not the only one. Let's just blame it on the paparazzi and call it a day.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Band Review: HN-88

I have a secret love for Pop- Punk. Laugh all you want, but I am still a badass Metalhead, despite my adoration for cutesy music. Besides, HN-88 are actually pretty freaking boss. Never mind that their name is random numbers and letters in the vein of Blink 182 or Sum 41. These guys write songs with the same subject matter as Metal... the Apocalypse, drug use, murder, sex,  and (if you count Metalcore as "Metal"), a combination of the latter two. Despite the intense themes, they sound catchy and upbeat. This is the kind of music that reduces a rocker girl such as myself into little more than just another coquettish, high-pitched groupie. It's not my fault they're dreamy. Stop yelling at me.

...Wait, ok, maybe they're not that dreamy. Was I really sloshed at the last show or was the stage lighting deceptively flattering? I guess we'll never know. But despite their delightfully hilarious physical appearance, they sound really good. Besides, now with this picture in my grasp, I have some leverage for future blackmail purposes. And another item in my "Stuff To Look At High" folder.

In all seriousness, these guys are great if you have nostalgia for the 90's and old-school MTV. Back in my day, this is the kind of stuff that rocker dudes would play to impress their girlfriends. And as a chick, I have to admit, this makes us go wild. Metal will always be my favorite genre... Nay, my favorite THING EVER....  But the hottest guys in it are the fictional band Dethklok. Even other Metalheads admit, we're kind of nasty. But HN-88 is totally adorable, despite all the evidence to the contrary, I.E that cheesy photo that I insisted on posting here because it's funny.

See? They're cute, they're talented, AND they make girls laugh. These stupid assholes are basically my kryptonite. I honestly think they deserve five stars, but I resent them for interfering with my Metalhead image, so I'll only give them four.

...Ah, fuck it. Here's the other one. Those guys earned it. Those bastards...

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Band Review: Futilitarian

 I've noticed that New Mexico has an obsession, almost bordering on a fetish, with Outer Space. Mayhaps it's just because we have Roswell? I don't know. Either way, our Metal scene was prototype Alien-core before Rings Of Saturn was a big deal. From the celestial tech-death of Fields Of Elysium to the  astronaut rappers of State Of The Mingo, we're all a bunch of space cadets here. Hell, we even have a venue called Launchpad. We have a serious problem. That being said, I am head over heels for Futilitarian.

Futilitarian incorporates an obscene amount of guitar in an otherwise ambient instrumental style. The result is something like Post-Metal, but more mosh-able. The style is primarily heavy and sounds like planets crashing together. The guitars are melodic and melancholy, featuring tragic sounding riffs which segue off into angry blasts. Similarly,  the drums run the spectrum from caveman-esque primal rhythms to ridiculously fast explosions of energy.

Although Futilitarian oscillates between atmoshperic and extreme, the transitions are seamless. It's like watching the world explode, recoiling in horror, then realizing "Eh, they deserved it."  If you don't believe me, EP: To Earth is available for free download. The music may be free, but remember that Metalheads need money at least as much as everyone else. Therefore, you must check them out live in concert should the opportunity present itself. Behold:

Beefy. If for some reason you can't attend these concerts, you really should download their album.It sounds like a Lovecraftian apocalypse of the Elder Gods, set to autotune.  Here's the track list:

1. Escape Pod To Earth
2. Ocean: Axis
3. (Planetary) Magnitude
4. Retrieving Nihilism
5. Abstract Universe
6. Black Dwarf Star
Need I say it? Five stars outta five.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

A Blessing With A Curse

I was kind of bummed out because my posts are half-assed and lame, so I was worried about what to write today. Then I realized I could just post more flyers and call it a day.

Tonight W21 is hosting the annual Get Awesome Fest, aptly titled because it's FREE and features tons of bands from different genres. I don't recognize any Metal bands in the line up. However, I know that HN-88 is a flashback to 90's Pop-Punk, and that we Santa Fe girls go wild for them. Think what Green Day or Sum 41 would be like if they had more personality. State Of The Mingo is outta-this-world Hip Hop. If you've never experienced  an astronaut rapping, this is kind of a must-see. My favorite album of theirs is the fabulously titled Revenge Of The Synth. These Charming Cobras are ridiculously catchy Punk, somewhat Surf-Rock in their style. Mono Stereo is still a mystery to me. They are "Indie",whatever the fuck that means. And I don't know anything about the remaining bands either. Hey, it's a free show, what's the worst that can happen?

If you're in stupid Albuqurque this Sunday, check out the awesome Punk show at the Gasworks. I don't know any of these bands except for Domestic Violence, self-proclaimed Super Punk Rock, which sounds about right. Their reverbnation doesn't quite do them justice, as their stage presence is, quite frankly, phenomenal. For lack of a better description, I would compare them to Rancid but with a hot chick as the lead singer. That's not even mentioning the other 3 bands who are playing, and it's only $5. This is an all-ages show, so don't fuck it up by getting swilly at the venue. You can drink yourself to sleep when it's over.

Another Gasworks show, eh? This one is on Sunday, July 1st. This Is Hell has shared the stage with the likes of Unearth and Within The Ruins, so they are obviously a force to be reckoned with.The Greenery describe themselves as "sexy dudes making sketchy music." Yeah, that's accurate enough. Ecophagy is a bunch of teenagers wreaking havoc on your sense of hearing. I usually don't like chaotic Hardcore, but I have to admit that these dudes are pretty awesome.  Xerxes is kind of mysterious.

This one is on my 21st birthday, so it's my gift to myself. Only $4 to see A.P.D?! That's nothing short of scandalous.  Not to mention four other amazing Punk bands. That's less than a dollar per act. Take, for instance, Doomed To Exist. They've been described as everything from Grimecore to Crust to Thrash. Regardless of the genre, they are fucking amazing. Duke City Bombers are pretty crazy. They're basically old school "Oi! Oi! Oi!" Punk rock. There are approximately infinity Punk bands called Intoxicated, so I'm not sure which one this actually is. Bad Engrish is yet another Colorado Punk band. And unlike most shows, this one will most likely involve heavy drinking. See you there, my loves.  

Friday, June 8, 2012

Shakespeare And Metal: Part II

Last night I watched a rerun of Metalocalypse when Nathan Explosion had to read the complete works of Shakespeare, and then I was reminded of one of my many projects that I initiated and subsequently abandoned. So, at long last, here is the second installment of my speculations on the connexion betwixt Shakespeare and Metal.

Last time, I had Othello on my mind. Now, I'm thinking about Hamlet. The titular character is a hesher and a half. As countless Metal documentaries and fans are forever reminding us, Metal is all about the underdogs. Our first introduction to Hamlet in Act I, Scene II shows him insulting his enemy Claudius. His very first line in the entire play is "A little more than kin, and less than kind." From Twisted Sister to Arch Enemy, Metal exemplefies the rebellion against such foes. Whether it's bitchy authority figures, corrupt governments, or society as a whole, everyone has oppressors who are too close for comfort.

This rebellion takes a more humorous and less sinister tone in Act II, during which Hamlet verbally kicks Polonius' ass. Seriously, try to read this dialogue (the good stuff starts at line 170) and not think of Beavis And Butthead dissing a lame music video. Hamlet ruthlessly mocks Polonius' old age, his ignorance, and even insults his daughter's sexuality. However, this scene  is more than mere comic relief. Polonius, in an uncharacteristic moment of wisdom, asserts that "Though this be madness, yet there is method in't." Even more than rebellion, unison in entropy is the pinnacle of Metal art. From the music itself to the bedlam state of a mosh-pit, Metal is all about turning your insanity into something artistic and meaningful.
 Uh... Sorry guys, but it turns out that Hamlet isn't exactly light reading, so I could only get through two acts today before the process got tedious. I'm sure that there's more similarities between the play and Metal, but I'm gonna take the easy way out and just remind you that everyone dies at the end. Ja, datz brootalz.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Cheer Up, Emo Kid

I missed the Gaza show, due to the clusterfuck that passes as "Public Transportation" in New Mexico. Being stranded in the sketchy side of one of the most Meth-saturated cities in the country is pretty Metal, but it's also pretty fucked up. So I cut my losses and drank an ungodly amount of Absinthe while listening to their stuff on Myspace. However, I am severely dissappointed that I didn't get their autographs. I saved my  June '11 edition of Terrorizer Magazine, in which they had a kick ass review, solely for this purpose. It was then that I realized, this has been a pretty false year for us Metalheads.

Flattus Maximus is dead, for starters. Not to mention that May 16 was the anniversary of Ronnie James Dio's death. And when heshers weren't busy dropping like flies, bands were busy  breaking up. In my neck of the woods, we just lost Suspended, the ONLY all female Metal-band in the Albuqurque/Santa Fe area. Fields Of Elysium lost their drummer. This Days Light lost their vocalist. Grinkai decided to take a break from live concerts. Both Cassovita and Futilitarian converted to The Dark Side (Instru-Metal), and The Cast Aside apparently quit before they even started. What the fuck?

Meanwhile, legendary icons of the genre have seriously gone downhill. If you haven't listened to Iron Maiden's The Final Frontier, don't bother. It will break your heart. Same is to be said of Queensryche with thier immensely dissappointing Dedicated To Chaos. Final Frontier somehow manages to be simultaneously predictable and dissonant, whereas Dedicated To Chaos sounds like a "5 Gum: Stimulate your senses" commercial. It is a far cry from the beefy, heavy origins from which the bands had begun. How the mighty have fallen.

I missed many amazing concerts, and yet others were dissappointments. The local scene is in a retarded Catch 22 when the bands don't want to perform for a small or tepid audience, and the fans don't show much support because they think that bands don't want to play. The situation was worsened when we lost venues. Little Wing and The Compound are now defunct, leaving Metalheads under 21 in a really picarious position. And on the offchance that we get the opportunity to see a phenomenal act perform for cheap in an all ages venue... The goddamn train comes only once and an hour late. That is so false that it hurts.

I'm bumming myself out now. I'll look on the bright side, i.e stare at these Death Metal panties. By the way, my birthday is on the 25th. These would make a most excellent gift. Honest.

Ahh, that's better.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

We Came As Romans: A Very Bitchy Band Review

I'm going to be brutally honest and admit that I am the Paula Abdul of Metalheads. That I refer to this simple fact as "brutally honest" is a testament to it's validity. Sometimes it is in the best interest of the artists to provide some constructive criticism, and not meaningless praise. And sometimes it's just fun to be a bitch to a band that you despise. And after hours of plunging the unknown, fathomless depths of the internet, I finally found some Metal that I dislike. Even Metalcore is a guilty pleasure, so this took a pretty long time. Here are my not-so-nice thoughts on We Came As Romans.

First of all, I'm going to re-inforce my previous assertion that I'm too nice, by saying that I don't even hate them that much. I enjoy Owl City, for whom I accidentally mistook WCAR when they played on the radio. My immediate reaction was "When did they decide to keep the auto-tune but replace the rest with screams?" And, for better or for worse, the screams are actually pretty damn good. However, you can still make out the lyrics, so they're not good enough. Even if they were, their brutality is instantly neutralized by the high pitched auto-tune singing that is annoyingly catchy. They leave me in a wierd, Purgatory-esque no-mans-land between Pop and Metal that keeps me perplexed. I think that I might even like it despite myself. BUT THERE'S NO WAY TO BE SURE.

Okay, so I guess the music is tolerable if you need some background noise while you do mindless manual labor. But bands aren't just about the sound; they have lyrics, music videos, album covers, etc. Let's start with the song titles. They are so mind-numbingly pretentious that it actually makes me angry. "Roads That Never End And Views That Never Cease"? Ugh. I wrote better lines when I was going through my Emo phase in Middle School. The rest of the song titles sound like propoganda jingles for the Green Party, or at least some corny Earth-Day theme song. "Planting A Seed," "Understanding What We've Grown To Be", "To Move On Is To Grow", so on and so forth. I tried to muscle my way through some music videos, but I could only survive two of them. I realized I would rather give myself a battery-acid manicure than endure any more of thier corny shenanigans. At least then I wouldn't be bored.

Ok. Let me spare you the torment of actually watching the music videos, and just let you know that they basically look like the most garden-variety homecoming dance you've ever seen. The audience doesn't even headbang. They just fist-pump. And the band members have the most annoying facial hair that looks like it's been drawn on with eyeliner.

OUCH. Pot calling the kettle black. Ok, I'm not all that invested in my hatred, so I won't even bother talking about the awful lyrics and album art. That would require some effort on my part. Besides, at the end of the day, at least it's not Ke$ha. Two stars outta five.

Monday, June 4, 2012

A Torrential Onslaught Of Music

I know I just posted flyers for upcoming shows, but there's more concerts in summer than is humanly possible to actually attend. During my most recent excursion to Albu-tweakers, I noticed tons of Metal flyers posted on the neighboring venues. Jesus Christ, if you're in New Mexico this month and somehow bored, you have to be deliberately trying not to have fun. Check this out, starting with The Sunshine Theater:

At first I was skeptical about Born Of Osiris, due to their flourish-y logo. I was expecting something a lot less heavy than they actually are. However, upon giving them a chance, I was pleasantly surprised by heavy screams and intricate melodies. I love extreme music, but I also appreciate virtuosity. The rest of the line up looks pretty decent, but the flyer is missing one thing: HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?!

Still no ticket prices on the flyers, huh? Well, to see The Acacia Strain, I'm willing to pay up to $20. I'm not insulting their talent, but I'm not made of money and there are other shows I could see on July 21st. This is part of the Scream It Like You Mean It tour, which seems pretty legit. My only problem is that one of the headliners is We Came As Romans, who are totally high-pitched emo whiners. Seriously, why didn't the extremely loud and talented Impending Doom get a better slot?! Oh well, the line up is still pretty killer.

Demon Hunter is pretty damn awesome. Not as caustic as most Metal, but brutal enough to keep me interested. Cancer Bats are far more psychotic, and since I've never seen them in concert, maybe I'll give this one a shot. Maybe I'd be even more willing to go if I knew how much it cost. *cough cough*\

So much for Sunshine. Let's see what Launchpad has in store for us now.

 The first thing on this flyer is "FREE SHOW" in huge letters, so I like it already. Torture Victim and Left To Rot have played Bloody Ear Fest before, so I already know that they are nothing short of ferocious. Plus, the logo for Torture Victim looks like it would make an excellent tramp stamp. But remember: This show is for the 21+ crowd only. I hope you ancient fossils know how much I resent you.

Gorilla Music is kind of sketch, but Worm-Hole is Metal as fuck. I honestly don't know about any of the other bands, but judging from names such as "Purple Venom" and "Night Must Fall", I'm assuming there will be enough heavy music to make it all worth it. $8 if you buy tickets from the bands, or pay $10 at the door. All ages, 4 PM on June 10.

I got excited when I saw Sex For Admission, but it turns out that's just the name of a band. In reality, it's $4 for admission, but maybe you'll get lucky. In all seriousness, Diverside is pretty righteous, so try to make it to this concert. If you're at least 21 years old, that is.

This flyer is a blast from the past. It looks just like a T-shirt from the '95 tour of underground Metal festival. Like most launchpad shows, I assume it's about $10 and for people old enough to drink. I'm gonna try to go anyway.

Futilitarian freaking rocks. Same is true of Bear The Nightmare. This show is only $5, doors open at 7 PM. Oh, and it's the day before my birthday, so I will literally be ONE DAY TOO YOUNG to actually go. Son of a fucking bitch.

Ok... Is everyone still with me? I know this is a gargantuan post, but there's so many shows that I'm trying to give them all publicity in somewhat manage-able chunks. Here's what's happening at Amped Performance Center:

Whattaya know, it's Futilitarian again. This time I can legally see them. Not to mention my homies from Destroy To Recreate and Scarless, both amazing bands. Thank Metal it's Friday, indeed.

Meanwhile, this very Wednesday, dont miss Gaza at the all ages venue, Gasworks. If you don't thrash so hard that you give yourself an aneurism, I'll be kind of disappointed. No joke.