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News From the Pit
Louder Than Life Edition
Holy cow! What an amazing time I've had recently. Vacation in New Orleans/Gulf Shores was a blast, and I came back barely in time for Louder Than Life. LTL was pretty darn good this year, too. Ozzy and Zakk were epic (see review and badass pics below)! Life for me is pretty sweet these days in this crazy, crazy world we live in. Vacation, a rockin' new band, I'm doing pretty well financially. Crazy is always present though – The Las Vegas Murders, North Korea, hurricane o'rama, the Iranians, ISIS, racism, viloent protesters – geez, what next? I'm going to enjoy my life while I can. You just never know when the next day could be the day your life changes forever. So hold onto those you love and cherish them with all your heart, because tomorrow is never promised.
My readers/fans are what have kept me going throughout the 17 years of writing for Louisville Music News and the 22 years playing original music in this city. I want to thank you for it all. I have had an amazing time thanks to all of you good people. I am looking forward to many more good times in the future – god willing.
Sorry I'm a bit late this month, I was on vacation in New Orleans and Gulf Shores Alabama. I was sooo tired and beat down from a brutal work schedule all summer, that I really needed this time off. I feel much better, and somewhat rested. For once, I took a vacation where I wasn't running every minute of every day. New Orleans is a very different place from anything I've ever seen. The sights and the alien smells associated with that legendary burg permeated my every being. Just walking around the French Quarter and smelling the cooking of the delicious food and spices was sooo cool. I finally had real cajun food! Yum! And the music! Wow. My GF and I stayed in a 250 years old hotel that was supposed to be haunted (nothing happened to us though). We ate at a The Napolean House, built in the 1700's. We went to a flea market that has been around since the late 1700's. We aren't drinkers, so we went for the history aspect of NOLA. The WW2 Museum was freaking awesome, and the architecture of the French Quarter was truly neat. We went to the famous above-ground, whitewashed, gothic-esqe Cemetery where the LSD scene in Easy Rider was filmed, and I got some wicked pics! I'm a happy camper.
After NOLA, we went and hung out in a condo right on the beach in Gulf Shores. It's a quiet, clean place unlike Panama City. Every morning at 8 a. m. , dolphins converged on our beach area. It was sooo cool and relaxing. Oh yeah, I ate a ton of seafood. I destroyed my diet for that week! Vacation is only a week, f**k it! I'm just a happy camper that I was able to go see all new places. It was a blast.
I'm also super stoked about the new band I'm in, Sweet Whiskey Pussy. We've only had five or six practices but things are shaping up quite nicely and quickly! I see a lot of promise. It will be fun to be back in the heavier side of the Louisville music scene. It's been a few years and I'm ready to once again show my true love for the heavier stuff. Look out Louisville, it's coming! Look for a January debut to be announced.
Shows Shows Shows!
Yngwie Malmsteen, Guns N' Roses, Gwar, Hatebreed, Cannibal Corpse, it seems you peeps will have a bunch of sweet options on stuff to do in the upcoming months.
Don't forget your local original bands, though! We need your support like the good ole days. People don't get out nearly as much these days and it makes me very sad. One very popular local cover band musician even went so far as to say that he is going to delete his FB account because none of his many many FB friends hardly ever come out to see him perform, even though his popularity online is substantial! "It don't make sense" he said, "Why does no one come out anymore?" I'm right there with him. I agree 100%.
So please, put yer smartphone down for a few hours for once, and get tha f**k out – to see some of these talented/dedicated local bands do what they love. For some of us (like me!) it is our only reward for what we do. I have never made much money playing music in ALL my years, because I play MY music with no compromise! But I'm cool with that. I do it because I love it and it makes me happy.
I just wish more of you peeps would get out and support our scene a lil' more....
Louder Than Life Stuff
Be sure you check out my review and pics of this historic Louisville gathering! This juggernaut keeps getting bigger and bigger! Photographer Mike Deinlein and myself got some pretty neat pics for you people to see! Hell, I might throw in a few videos as well just for the heck of it. Enjoy!
The Metal Grapevine
Louder Than Life Review N' Pics (and Parking Tip For Next Year) :
Be sure to check out the pics Michael Deinlein and I got for you peeps. They are sweet. The show? Wow. What another great event from Danny Wimmer Presents. I know it's just not me singing his praises, either. Pretty much everybody is totally down with Louder Than Life being here in Louisville. It's something that I never thought I would see here in Kentucky. We went from a music-starved city that rarely got a big national show, to a city that attracts folks from all over for one purpose – Louder Than Life. I've been saying we need this for years, and now we finally have a national concert series that appears to be doing even better than projected. Those guys are smart at DWP. This year they had the Bourbon And Beyond Festival one week before LTL, in the same spot, and that was pure genius. You got the stages, sound, and land reserved, so why not have another concert for another music genre? It was brilliant. And no doubt profitable. Good! I hope they made a bundle! More money to buy even bigger acts next go round! Metallica next year maybe? Hmmmmnnn.
The weather was perfect this year, unlike other years. The crowd was fat, the booze was flowing and the food was to die for! I had just gotten back from Alabama the very night before at 11 p. m. , so I was very tired when we got there that Saturday afternoon, but I quickly woke up and got down to business!
Reviewing LTL is not like reviewing other shows at all. It's much more challenging. First off, you cannot enjoy watching a full set of any artist (except the last), because you are constantly on the move to other stages to get pictures or to review other bands. And let me tell you, it's more than likely more walking than I've probably ever done in one day.
Yawn. Vacation will wear a MF out. But the sight of all the people and knowing in a few hours I'll be seeing Ozzy and Zakk gassed me up pretty fast, then I was good to go. It was the usual LTL affair. Costumes. Masks. Panda heads were there. Superheroes. Jesus. A guy in super cheesy Speedos. Care bears were there. A guy in a bacon costume. A group of guys dressed as evil orcs. Pure craziness was afoot. This was going to be fun. Hell, I even got a pic sent to me of disabled rocker Abby McCormick crowdsurfing while she was in a wheelchair! How cool is that? Way to go chick! The pic is in the LTL slideshow I have arranged for you good peeps. That is the spirit of LTL!
We got there in time to see He Is Legend from North Carolina, a rock band with metal influences, but also with nice singing harmonies and feeling, and tons of groove. They were pretty good, but not really my style. The music is complicated and written well. Vocalist Schuylar Croom was an animated soul as he worked the early attendees into a frenzy. The guy has a good mixture of vocal styles. He can scream or sing accordingly. The leads of guitarist Adam Tanbouz were tasty and melodic, and had great tone!
Of Mice And Men from Orange County California was pretty good too, although I had never seen them live. They were heavier and the crowd seemed to really like that. I noticed the crowd surfing really started to get crazy about the time they hit the stage. The tempo jumped up a few notches from previous bands. I'm not too into the metalcore vocals, as they seem kinda whiney to me at times, but the music was pretty neat. But to be honest, all of these metalcore bands are starting to sound the same to me. Vocalist/bassist Aaron Pauley has skills though, it's not easy singing and playing at the same time.
On this day I gained much more respect for the Eagles Of Death Metal. I've listened to their music before and wasn't impressed, and to be honest, I wondered how they became famous, (aside from that little incident in Paris) but seeing them live changed my mind a bit. These Palm Desert California natives can jam! They are different. They have a wide array of musicians who tour and perform and record in the studio and it works well for them. It sounds crazy but its true.
Vocalist/guitarist Jesse Hughes is the ringleader of this troupe, and he is quite the character. He is like Lemmy's little brother! This is a pure rock n roll band through and through. While it's not my personal cup of tea, I respect it. Guitarists David Catching and another guy – I have no idea who it was – were tearing shit up though. They melded together well, and it came through as classic sounding and epic. These guys were shredding! And the chick bassist Jennie Vee was hot as hell. I'm not a fan of the vocals of Jesse Hughes, but he does have something about him that draws you in. It's poppy, its punkish, its bluesy, its old-school rock n' roll, but it is not Death Metal of any sort. And that is probably a good thing for me these days, because that stuff grates on my nerves anymore. Guitarist Brent Hinds (dude is a beast) of Mastodon joined them onstage for the song "I Only Want You." Maybe people are sick of the trends in music, and just want some good ole fashioned Rock music. EODM were only eager to comply.
Steel Panther was their usual energetic, awesome selves. Ya either love them or hate them, and the way people were acting, most loved them. The crowd at the second stage was packed! They played a short thirty-minute set, notably including "Eyes Of A Panther" "Asian Hooker" and a cover of "Aint Talkin' Bout Love."
I wish I coulda stuck around for the whole set, but I had shit to do! I love Steel Panther though, and have seen them at least five or six times now. Those guys are ridiculously talented all around. There is no weak link in that whole band.
I have never seen Halestorm. Wow! Impressive. Now I see why this band gets a lot of recognition. I don't know much of this band or its origins, but what better place to learn? Learn I did.
Hailing from Pennsylvania, Lzzy Hale and her drummer brother Arejay joined forces early on, and since have conquered. You cannot help but to like Lzzy Hale's powerful voice and guitar playing. She has it going on, in both looks and talent. She definitely pushes herself to the limits vocally, unlike some musicians. She tries very hard to impress. Maybe even too much. Her guitar skills were pretty darn good, too, as she harmonized with lead guitarist Joe Hottinger, playing both rhythm and lead. Her brother's drum solo was rockin' as well.
It sounded great. Lzzy has tons of soul and emotion in her voice. She opened up with "Love Bites (So Do I)." "Apocalyptic," "Mz Hyde" and ended with "Mayhem" and "I Miss The Misery." She is a hot little thing too, although I think she looks much better with her hair long. That short haircut was a mistake! I'm glad I got to see what Halestorm was about. They rock.
Mastodon! At first I didn't like this Atlanta, Georgia band when I first heard them, but they grew on me over time. Now I think they are geniuses. Progressive and creative to the extreme. I still don't care for the vocals of Mastodon much, which all of the members contribute to. It's the complex music of Mastodon that got me. It's all over the place and not very repetitive. It has lots of groove too. The layering of the guitar parts is insane. Some pretty bizarre stuff going on with these guys when playing live. It's a roller coaster ride of powerful music. To me, the vocals are in the background. They could almost not even have any vocals and it would still be cool. Vocalist/bassist Troy Sanders has the utmost confidence in his art form/stage presence as he runs to and fro. Guitarist Brent Hinds is a monster on lead guitar. It was a pure shredfest from the get-go with that guy! Rhythm guitarist Bill Kelliher's haircut looks like a Nazi, but he is one bad MF as well. All those guys wail, and I loved watching them do their thing! Thunderous groove and some seriously complex riffage/layering. They played "Sultans Curse" "Divinations," "Colony Of Birchmen," "Ember City," "Megalodon" and ended with "Andromeda."
Rob Zombie rocked this night and made everyone happy. I've seen Rob before many times, but he really did well this night. It was sweet. I tell you what, he is one hard mofo to get a picture of! That dude will not sit still for one second! And that is for every show he does! I've never been able to get hardly any good pics of him. Rob Zombies stage show was wicked as always! The costumes, the lighted guitars of John 5, the giant TV screens featuring Rob's creative ideas, all of it. The crowd ate it up like it was free candy after a weed smoking contest! People went nuts! They played "Dead City Radio," "Superbeast," "Living Dead Girl," "Everybody's Fucking in A UFO," "More Human Than Human," "Never Gonna Stop," "Thunder Kiss '65," a Ramones cover of "Blitzkrieg Bop," an Alice Cooper cover of "Schools Out" and ended with "Dragula." John 5 did a cool solo, but not one of his better ones that I have seen. I saw his solo act at Uncle Pleasants two years ago and it was amazing! He is a much better guitarist than what he does in Zombie. Rob Zombie had a good night vocally, too. I've seen him be not so good live a few times. But in Louisville, he was on point! Great set, Rob. The crowd was insane and was left wanting more!
Five Finger Death Punch was killer! I know a lot of people give this band shit for whatever reason, but I like them, and have always liked them. They put on one helluva show at LTL. Polished. Tight. Emotional. And groovin' like a MF. I love the melodic aspect of FFDP. The great vocals of Ivan Moody, even though I think he is kind of an asshole. Well, he is always talking like he wants to kick someone's ass, and he acts like he is a badass. There is no need for all that. You are in a badass band bro, chill, but he does have some good points as well. He loves his country and respects our military people to no end, and he always pulls kids up onstage and gives them memories they will surely never forget, so that is pretty neat.
The guy has an amazing singing voice. I love his voice! He tries very hard every show, and does not slack or cut out hard parts at all. To me, a longtime critic, that is all important. The band was killing it! Super tight. Bassist Chris Kael, a guy from Lexington, with whom I used to play shows 900 years ago, is one cool mofo, and I am sooo happy for him and his success. He saw me shooting pics in the pit and shot me a goofy face as if to say "what's up, Ed!" It made me smile to see one of us local musicians made good. What an amazing, life-changing experience to have experienced. Good for him!
Guitarist Zoltan Bathory seems like a super cool guy every show I've reviewed. He seems very humble and I love his technique which caters to emotion, feeling and groove over complexity and difficulty. He is a helluva songwriter. Lead guitarist Jason Hook is a beast on leads though, and these two kill together! They started with "Lift Me Up," "Never Enough" – which is one of my faves –then did a cover of Bad Company's "Bad Company," which I also like, "Jekyll And Hyde" and "Burn MF." Then they did acoustic versions of "Wrong Side Of Heaven" and "Remember Everything." The last few songs were "The Bleeding" and the Animals' classic hit "House Of The Rising Sun" which I don't think is a good song to redo. I thought of doing that years ago, but never did. Sometimes you just gotta leave the classics alone. But the Bad Company was done very well. The crowd loved FFDP despite the few negative comments. Ivan gave his usual props to our military but instead of pulling a kid onstage, he gave props to the sign language interpreter and brought her up into the limelight for a lil' FFDP love for all to see. Basically giving her props for doing what she was. Telling us all, that we are all one, despite any flaws and shortcomings. That no one is perfect, and thanks for translating to the hearing impaired folk in the crowd. The crowd ate this up! I liked it too. It made points up for the douchebag things Ivan has done over the years. FFDP kicked major ass this night.
Ozzy MF'ing Osbourne! I go way back with Ozzy's music, so you could say I am an expert on him. I saw Ozzy perform first in 1984 at Cardinal Stadium, and the last time in 2013 with Black Sabbath and he was very good! He hit every note and didn't mess up. I was kinda shocked for real. But Ozzy and Zakk Wylde is a different story and have not played together in Louisville since the early 90's. 1992 I'm thinking! So yeah, I was very excited to hear they would be headlining LTL. Ozzy had a little trouble with his voice this time around, though. He cracked noticeably maybe six times during the whole set. I think he may have had a cold or something because just four short years ago he nailed it like it was nothing! So don't go thinking Ozzy sounds like that all the time, because he don't! And I know!
First off, the man is over 70 years old, probably, so cut him some slack. Secondly, have you ever tried to sing some of his songs? Many of them are not easy to sing at all, despite what you may think.
Ozzy's band was tight as hell. They launched into "Bark At The Moon" for the first song, and Zakk was off a little bit on the intro but quickly recovered to make it pretty epic. He nailed the Jake E. Lee solo! They played "Mr Crowley" and it was killer! Zakk shredded on the incredibly difficult Randy Rhoads solo, and did it justice, to my surprise. Much much better than way back in 1992. Zakk kinda slaughtered that solo then.
They played Sabbath's "Fairies Wear Boots," which was unexpected and awesome. "Suicide Solution," "Iron Man," "War Pigs," "I Don't Know," "Shot In The Dark," "I Don't Wanna Change The World," "Crazy Train" and the last two, "Mama I'm Coming Home" and "Paranoid," as always. It was a good set of classics!
Ozzy's bandmembers did very well. Bassist Rob 'Blasko' Nicholson adopted the Geezer Butler bass sound/style and it was almost like Geezer was up there himself. And drummer Tommy Clufetos did very well on the skins and his drum solo. I think Ozzy accidentally introduced him as someone else though. A momentary lapse of memory. Think of all the drugs Ozzy did back in the day. So a lil' memopry loss is okay I reckon. No complaints here. And what can we say about Zakk Wylde? Not my favorite Ozzy guitarist, but he does jam! He didn't have an easy job filling in the shoes of players like Jake E. Lee and Randy Rhoads, but he did it, and he sounds better now – than ever before in my opinion. His solos on "Bark at The Moon" and "Mr Crowley" were wicked. So yeah, Ozzy didn't have the greatest night vocally, but he did his best, and ran around like his usual self, inciting craziness to the young folk who had never seen Ozzy live, and 90% of the time it did sound awesome! There were only a few spots where he cracked. So to all you haters mouthing about him cracking – F**K OFF! You don't know shit. You could never comprehend the level of talent/energy it takes to do what Ozzy does. You just don't realize. The man is a living legend and one of the richest entertainers on the planet, so keep hating all you want. He don't give a shit. I'm glad I was able to see him perform possibly for the last time (but I hope not).
By this time I was freaking exhausted. Half buzzed, back hurting, feet hurting, full of good food, and I could not wait to get into my brand new memory foam bed with my GF, who was overly happy that I took her with me to such a badass event. After some all too brief freaky freaky, I slept like the dead.
We were wide awake, bright-eyed and bushy. tailed. It was on!
We got there in time to see Talent Agent Scott Frazier's new act Joyous Wolf from Los Angeles. I had never heard of them. These guys are pushing some powerful chit, lemmie tell ya. It's like Led Zeppelin meets The Black Crowes meets Jackyl. Vocalist Nick Reese has the goods. He has a killer singing voice and some pretty nasty rasps as well, a good mixture of classic rock vocals. And he moves around a lot to the music. It's pretty intense dancing. He puts on a show!
Guitarist Blake Allard is like a time traveling rocker from 1977, oozing feeling from his Les Paul. It seems all the classic riffs of the rock ages come through this young cat's playing. I think he may like Zeppelin the best, though. The rhythm section was kickin' some serious butt as well. It's groovy, trippy at times, fast, slow, all over the place. Together these guys are more powerful than a gallon of Kentucky Moonshine.
I liked the song "Mountain Man" that they played. Singer Nick Reese gave a shout out to fallen Louisville guitarist Kevin McCreery, who recently passed from Cancer. That was very nice.
Beartooth from Columbus, Ohio put on an energetic set of tight metalcore. The crowd sang along to their song "In Between" and got quite the crowds-urfing wave going for the song "Aggressive." That song has a crushing riff in the verse. They have a bag full of cool heavy riffs. It's the choruses that I'm not sure I like. Oh well, maybe I'm just an old Ozzy-loving fogie! It's a cool polished sound. But I gotta be honest, a lot of these metalcore bands just sound the same to me. Screaming in verses, and melodic choruses. Good musicians, but not my cup of tea. Next.
Nothing More? Wow. This band is insane. You know I really don't like modern metal very much, but in this case I was welcome to see something new and awesome. And this band was awesome. This is a modern metal band that I can dig.
For one thing the singer Jonny Hawkins is a vocal genius. No shit. I like to think I know my shit, and I'm telling you that he is one creative MF on the singing. Very impressive. Guitarist Mark Vollelunga was wicked, but he wasn't very showy lead-wise, a minimalist, but his tone and sound were immaculate. I would have liked to have heard more leads out of him. He rocks. Drummer Ben Anderson was a monster on the skins. Bassist Daniel Oliver was a short spunky lil' guy all over the stage rockin' a Bongo bass with massive groove. Those basses are amazing. Jonny was singing some pretty darn difficult high pitched stuff that sounded great mixed with some amazing vocal effects.
Great job, soundguy! Everyone overlooks the soundguy.
At one point all members played some drums in a drum-a-thon type session. Jonny jumped up on a crazy-looking contraption with huge gears and switches and it looked like some huge steampunk instrument. Whether any music was created by the machine is debatable. But it did look cool. Different. I enjoyed this set and welcomed the new and modern metal of today. Badass.
They played "Christ Copyright," "Let 'em Burn," "Jenny," "Go To Wa,r" "This Is The Time (Ballast)," "First Of The Year" and "Salem."
Falling In Reverse is a Las Vegas rock band whom I didn't care for much. It was poppy, punkish, rappy, trendy modern rock and I wasn't a fan. The crowds seemed to not like them as much either.
Why in the hell was Nothing More booked before these guys?
I had a choice to make, Lacuna Coil vs The Pretty Reckless. Easy peasy. Italy's Lacuna Coil is a no contest. This band is one of the premier acts on this day in my opinion, and why they are on the second stage instead on the mainstage, where Falling In Reverse played – is ridiculous. OMG. Several people were shocked at that. They have toured the world numerous times, and played massive massive festivals in Europe for decades. It wasn't right. But being the pros they are, they didn't bitch, and delivered one of the top performances of the day as they ripped into "Heaven Is A Lie," "My Demons," "Our Truth" and a blistering new song called "The House Of Shame" that is the best new song they have had in years. Awesome. It's back to the old-school Lacuna! The Heavier Lacuna.
Vocalist Cristina Scabbia is sooo badass its not funny. She has the voice and beauty of an angel, truly one of the best female voices in rock out there. I love how she delivers live as well as on her recordings.
Male vocalist Andrea Ferro gets a bad rap, and I admit I didn't like him much in the beginning many years ago. But his voice and weird gravelly style has won me over. He is different. Listen to his vocals on "The House Of Shame" or "Senzafine." Badass. The two work well together. Very well. They owned. You should have seen and heard the crowd! It was an ocean of difference than many others that day. That whole second stage area was packed! I hope the LTL people saw this and will give them a much sweeter spot next year or the year after. Everyone makes mistakes, and now the LTL peeps can hook them up a lil' better next time. Cristina was in fine form, and seemed happy. I'm soooo infatuated by that chick. She is amazing. I feel like a schoolboy with a crush. Oh well, she is married to the bass player and musical genius behind Lacuna Coil, Marco Coti Zelati, who was dressed up like an evil clown. Evil clowns all around, except Cristina and Andrea.
New guitarist Diego Cavallotti was a surprise. I am a fan of Cristiano and Maus, the former guitar players, so that sucked for me a little. But the new guy did pretty darn good. I'd like to see a reuion with the former guys though, if possible.
Next up was In This Moment, also from Los Angeles. What a mind blowing set that was. I saw them before years ago but I guess I was preoccupied because how could I have missed this? The band had an elaborate set of crosses, candles, a papal stand, twin evil nun-looking creatures in the background. Vocalist Maria Brink was hot as hell in those flowing robes over her skintight bodysuit, and she has an amazing voice as well. She gave Cristina a run for her money today. The opening song "Blood" was killer, both sonically and visually. It sucked me instantly in. At first I thought she was just mumbling blah blah blah, but I started to see the light and talent of Maria Brink emerge. The more I saw her the more I realised who she kinda sounded like. Adele. "Oh Lord" is the song that reminds me of Adele bigtime. Even my GF agreed. Things got a lil' slower sexier later in the set and that is when I heard the Adele influence. This sexy blonde chick got me aroused! Sorry, Cristina. She wasn't the best singer by any means, but she does have good skills and she is one sexy bitch on the mic.
The guitarist Chris Howorth looks crazy with the hair and Pirates Of The Caribbean look. He wasn't a showoff, and he mostly handled the crushing. Hooky. Easy. rhythm guitars with minimal leads. He definitely looks the part. This is a cool band and I definitely want to see more of this interesting young woman. Hard chunky metal riffs and sexy soul ocals do mix well, and I wanna hear more. They played "Whore," "Oh Lord," "Blood," "River Of Fire" and "Roots."
I really enjoyed these last two sets by female vocalists. They stole the show. Pure hotness, too. Ask any guy there. Wow.
Rise Against is a melodic hardcore band from Chicago. I don't like them. More of the trendy soundalike doody. A little too punky/hardcore for my tastes. The crowd didn't seem to care for it much either, except in a few small spots of a moshpit. Vocalist Tim McIIrath has a decent voice. It's just the music I don't like. Very basic riffs. Easy stuff. Again, how can Lacuna Coil and In This Moment get beat out of a better timespot, by this? Ugh. The band punk-rocked through the songs "Ready to Fall," "Give It All," "The Violence," "Help Is on the Way," "Satellite," "Wolves," and "Savior."
I saw Incubus a long time ago at the Brewery Thunderdome. I'm not a fan of this band either, but I like them way better than many of the bands here today though. At least they are original and creative. This is not my musical style day. But I respect these guys for being different and staying true to their music. I don't know much about Incubus so be patient.
They played a nice long set consisting of "Glitterbomb," "Circles," "Nimble Bastard," "Anna Molly," "Wish You Were Here," "Pardon Me," "Sick Sad Little World," "Drive," "Nice to Know You," "No Fun," "Stellar," "Megalomaniac" and "Warning."
"Pardon Me" sounded really cool and laid back. Brandon Boyd is a talented singer/songwriter. He sounds pretty good live though ee could have used a little more effect on his voice. He was a little dry for my taste. The band had a Mixer/DJ station onstage. The trippy DJ scratching sounds mixed with the effect driven guitar were cool. I became more of a fan that day. They played Pink Floyd's "Wish you Were Here," which to some was cool. I'm not a fan of Pink Floyd, either. I know I know. Everyone loves Floyd! Not me.
Bassist Dirk Lance was amazing! Very nice bass lines all around for every song. This guy is a funkmaster. "Anna Molly" is a song I've never heard before but I like better than the popular songs! You learn something new everyday with this job! I love the creative guitarwork of Mike Einziger. He is smooth. I almost feel an Edge (of U2) type vibe in his playing at times.
The music was surreal and soothing. A break from the hard and furious metalcore clones that permeated my every being. This was a welcome change. It was funky, groovy, upbeat, and layered wonderfully. The crowd loved Incubus and the crowd-surfers were in full force. In the photo pit, it was chaos! Security forces were being overly forceful, but I guess they had to to maintain order what with kids and adults flying over the barricade every 30 seconds! It made it pretty hard for us photographers to get any good pics, worrying about flying boots coming down upon your nugget. It was a good set by a very good, talented band. Mucho props. It's just not me. I'm more of a Lacuna, Ozzy, FFDP, Mastodon, Steel Panther, In This Moment, heavier music type fella.
I also know nothing of The Prophets Of Rage, featuring famous rappers Chuck D of Public Enemy and B-Real of Cypress Hill and guitarist Tom Morello of Rage Against The Machine. I do not like rap. I do not like Rage Against The Machine. Well, maybe it was just the singer and his political rap that I did not like. The music was okay I guess. I do like guitarist Tom Morello's guitar playing a little. He gets some cool sounds out of a guitar. Different stuff. I liked Audioslave much more than Rage. Much much more! Cypress Hill? No thanks. Public Enemy? I'll pass.
The supergroup launched into a set featuring several bands' music, including Audioslave, Soundgarden, Public Enemy, Cypress Hill, Rage Against The Machine, MC5. They started with the Public Enemy cover "Prophets of Rage," then a triple dose of Rage with "Testify," "Take the Power Back," "Guerrilla Radio", "Living on the 110," "Hail to the Chief" and "Bullet in the Head." Then they did a Cypress Hill/Public Enemy medley, including "Hand on the Pump," "Can't Truss It," "Insane in the Brain," "Bring the Noise" and the annoying "Jump Around." Then came "Sleep Now in the Fire", Audioslave's "Like a Stone" "Kick Out the Jams," Cypress Hill's "How I Could Just Kill a Man" and the ever-so-present song that every cover band in every city does – "Bulls On Parade" – "Killing In The Name Of" and finally Soundgarden's "Slaves and Bulldozers." I have to say I liked "Like A Stone" probably the best, maybe because there were no rap vocals. No one in that band could even come close to duplicating Chris Cornell's vocals, so I see why it was an instrumental. Why bother! I liked Tom Morello's guitar playing the best out of this set. The song "Testify" was pretty badass as well. "Geurilla Radio" was pretty neat, though. I was digging the wah-wah effects from Tom's arsenal. Rappers Chuck D and B-Real were razor sharp and tight as can be vocally as they hooted and rapped throughout the set of rockin' arsenal of songs chosen from a massive musical library of their choosing! They had the crowd all pumped up and the crowd-surfing was insane! I almost got run over a few times on the way out of the photo pit! Bassist Tim Commerford was one of the funkiest bassists of the day. He and Incubus' bassist was neck and neck! Sick! The drums of Brad Wilk were awesome as always (he also played in Black Sabbath for a time). Yes, they were tight. But choosing between Rage's whiney Zack De La Rocha or hooting rappers is like having to choose between heartburn and diarrhea. It's equally painful to me. Oh, well, lots of people DID like the Prophets Of Rage, so I guess that's all that matters. But I'll just stick with my Ozzy and FFDP. It was a successful show with people having a great time, no fights, no idiocy that I saw. Lots of crowd-surfing. Maybe more than ever at LTL!
What a weekend. I love Louder Than Life with all of my heart and I'm so glad they gave Kentucky a chance to be on the map finally. While day two was far from my cup of tea, I still had a blast and really enjoyed Nothing More, Lacuna and In This Moment. These three were unreal! Wow. Worth every ache in my feet. I didn't party much this go round. I think I drank maybe three beers Saturday and that was it! I had pics to get. Notes to take. Music to review.
The food was to die for BTW. I had Island Noodles, mac n' cheese, clam chowder, cheesy bacon tater tots, three funnel cakes (I know I know), and a prime rib sandwich that was excellent. Good stuff!
Add the Cajun food in NOLA, seafood in Gulf Shores, and now this? Diet wrecked.
Oh well, it only comes once a year.
Thanks, Danny Wimmer, for bringing two of my all-time favorites to Louisville. Judas Priest and Ozzy! I can't wait to hear who's coming next year.
Ok, I promised a VALUABLE Parking Tip: Here it is. If you want to avoid an hour-and-a-half wait getting out after the show next year, listen up! Take River Road from downtown towards Champions Park, but before you get to the park, park in the first parking lot you come to off to your left in a field! They charge $10 but you will thank me in the end. You will be out of there in no time when it's time to leave! It's a bit of a walk, but it's totally worth it after a long, tiresome day. You will be home in no time! Listen to me peeps! You do NOT want to be hemmed into some of those parking lots. Hours of waiting can be avoided.
See you next year!
Yngwie Malmsteen At The Mercury Ballroom On October 19:
Yup, that's right. The Swedish guitar-playing wild man virtuoso is coming to town! If you've never seen him play live, NOW is your chance! Don't blow it. Take it from a guy who has seen him play live three or four times since 1985. There is a reason for that! Yngwie shreds like no other. His mixture of rock, metal, and his greatest love, classical music, makes for one unforgettable experience for the listener. It's been many a year since I've seen him, maybe 20! So its time I pay my respects once again! Guitarists! Pay your respects and come on up and rock out with Yngwie, and mingle with the hoards of nerdy guitarists! As king nerdy guitarist, I'll most likely be there reviewing/getting pics. Check out this classic Yngwie tune!
Guns N Roses At The KFC Yum! Center On Friday, November 3.
Big News! G N' R is coming! I can't remember the last time they played Louisville. Surely it wasn't the time when they opened for Alice Cooper on their Appetite tour! I was there. Well, anyway, they are coming here again finally! Awesome! Before you say "naaahhhhh" hear me out! My girlfriend and I went last year to see them in Cinci and it was AWESOME! It was a work day, I was tired, hot and sore, but it was totally worth it! Axl was in a zone or something! He really really did well singing stuff that was recorded damn near 30 years ago! He tried super hard to hit every note, and damned if he didn't pull it off. You know my ass is a stickler of a critic, but I have no qualms or complaints about his performance. It was shocking, really. Honestly I didn't think he couldn't reproduce the notes live anymore, and I was prepared for disappointment, but I was eating crow by night's end. The band was super tight as well, and Slash was wicked as usual. What a combo! Slash's emotional riffage, Axl's screeching, Duffs backups and punk/funky basslines. Oh yeah, and the two new guys did good too! So listen to an old expert, it's good! Go to this concert even though you don't wanna pay those prices. It should be an interesting crowd. I'll probably see you there! Say hello!
R. I. P Kevin Mccreery-Kevfest Info:
The world has lost a great human being and musician. Guitarist Kevin McCreery (Uncle Kracker, Avantgardedog, Velvet Saints, The Dark Side Of The Wall, and several cover bands) passed away on September 14, 2017. If you read my column last month, you know about Kev's illness and his battle for life. He fought hard and was very brave to the end. Never have I seen such an outpouring of love and respect for any other Louisville native musician than of Kevin McCreery's passing. I didn't know you that well, Kevin, but I am glad to have met you and talked to you the few times that we did talk. What a cool cat. R.I.P., my guitar playing brother.
Kevin's friends are putting on Kevfest on Sunday, October 22 at Baxters 942. It is an event to raise awareness for Prostate Cancer and Shirley's Way. It will be to honor Kevin's life and a place for all his friends and family to celebrate Kev's life.
Hatebreed Coming Friday December 1:
Just in time to get you into the Christmas spirit! See them at Diamond Pub Concert Hall. These guys rule.
Louisville Deathfest 2017 Drama:
Sound issues, promoter issues, poor organizing/scheduling, sheesh. Didn't sound like a positive night, but luckily a few people pulled it together and made it happen nonetheless. Props to Kayla Pugh, Chris Smith and Zak Denham for saving the show, according to some that were there. Promoter AJ Lucas never showed up on the second night, or even returned calls. Not cool at all. I heard there was a 10 minute band change-over time? Who is the moron who thought that 10 minutes would be sufficient time to remove one band's entire gear, AND put anothers' up, AND get a soundcheck in? Ridiculous. Whoever it is does not need to be promoting bands, is all I can say. That is what you venues get for letting any idiot off the street book for you! I'm sorry to all of the awesome bands who traveled great distances to come to Louisville Deathfest. This is not what we are about. Hopefully next year, there will be a competent promoter in charge of things. Until then, don't give up hope on us!
Gwar Returns On November 2!
See these maniacs in concert at the Mercury Ballroom on Thursday November 2. Go early to check out The Stonecutters opening. I'll never forget my first Gwar experience. I was shot in the face from across the venue with goo-ey liquid that came from a giant jesus costume's giant, rubber-dick hose! Uncool, but pretty damn funny.
Check out this video of GWAR playing Kansas! Wow.
Dirty Rotten Imbeciles Coming On Oct 17th!
Cult metal heroes DRI will invade Trixie's on October 17, so be there! It should be a knock down drag out affair to remember. Locals VAMT will be opening so come early!
Udo Coming In 2018!
Terry Harper, you da man! You can always count on Terry booking some obscure awesome metal that no other promoter would normally touch. The legendary Accept vocalist Udo dirkschneider will be at Trixie's on April 3. I will definitely be at this one. Udo rocks!
Wicked Sinsation Changes Band Name To...
Awesome Louisville 80's rock cover band Wicked Sinsation have changed their name to – Vinyl Countdown. Great band! Look for them at a bar near you.
Pazuzu Changes Band Name To:
This talented newer metal band has changed their name to Kill The Crown, and they have just released an album called Welcome To The Introduction, available now on CDBaby. com/cd/killthecrown. Soon to be released on iTunes. Contact the band for personal copies! Guitarist Jacob Thorley has left the band, but John Shea has stepped up to fill his place. Next show is October 28th at Brewskees. Here is some of their brand new music! Don't forget where you first heard it! LMN!
Musician Of The Month-
This Month's Feature Is Drummer Jeff Williams! Check His Feature Out!
Cannibal Corpse Coming In December:
Are you ready to get brutal? See them at Diamond Concert Hall on Tuesday December 5.
Guitarist Wanted – For Metalcore Band The Devils Among Us.
Guitarists! This metalcore band needs a 2nd axeman, so hit them up if you wanna play out soon! No lazy ass unreliable bitches, they said! Contact Thedevilsamongus666@gmail. com
Bands! Send Me Those Live Videos!!
Let everyone hear and see you in action! Send those videos! Must be on youtube! Eddymetal1@aol. com
LMN Live – Boombox Poets.
LMN Live – Verses.
LMN Live – Luther.
LMN Live – Elephant Room.
LMN Live – Wicked Sinsation.
LMN Live – 16 Bones.
LMN Live – Juke Joint Revival.
LMN Live – Year Of The Gun.
Upcoming Regional Shows
Saturday, October 14 – Hacksaw Vendetta.
Friday, October 27 – Zeroking and Nothing Wrong.
Saturday, October 28 – Wyld Ride.
Saturday, November 4 – A Forgotten Fury.
Catfish Haven Pay Lake Bar And Grill
Saturday, September 23 – Hidden Foundation.
Cosmic Charlies (Lexington)
Wednesday, November 22 – Hed (PE)
Diamond Bar (ST Matthews)
Saturday, October 28 – Naked Garden.
Diamond Pub Concert Hall
Saturday, October 7 – Joyner Lucas.
Saturday, October 14 – Suicide Awareness Show w/ Kingslayer, Year Of The Gun and others.
Saturday, November 11 – The Black Dahlia Murder, Suffocation, Decrepit Birth, Necrot and Wormwitch.
Friday, December 1 – Hatebreed w/ Dying Fetus and Code Orange.
Tuesday, December 5 – Cannibal Corpse w/ Powertrip and Gatecreeper.
Saturday, June 2 – Hammerfall w/ Flotsam and Jetsam.
Friday, October 13 – The River City Rockers.
Friday, October 27 – Naked Garden.
The Green Lantern (Lexington)
Saturday, September 23 – Creature Of Exile, Left To The Wolves, Kur. Free! 21 +
Tuesdday, October 31 – Ironman and The War Pigs.
Saturday, October 14 – Vinyl Countdown,
Saturday, October 21 – Mad Alice.
Saturday, September 30 – Louder Than Life presents Pierce the Veil. Official late night show! 11 P. M.
Sunday, October 8v Issues and Volume.
Friday, October 27 – Here Come the Mummies.
Thursday, November 2 – Gwar w/The Stonecutters.
Saturday, October 21 – Vinyl Countdown (formerly Wicked Sinsation)
Saturday, October 28 – Sick Little Things (Alice Cooper Tribute) w/ Pazuzu.
Spectators Bar And Grill
Friday, October 27 – The River City Rockers.
Friday, October 27 – Harms Way, Left Behind, Miracle Drug, Cult Killer and Nesh. 6:30 P. M. $12
Tuesday, September 26 – The Birthday, Massacre.
Friday, September 29 – The Unofficial Louder Than Life Pre-Party w/ Verses, Gallifrey Falls, Luther, Caducus, The World I Knew, A Forgotten Fury and You Wont Feel A Thing.
Monday, October 2 – Xandria, Kobra and The Lotus and September Mourning.
Tuesday, October 3 – Soil w/ Saving Able and Kira.
Tuesday, October 10 – Gemini Syndrome w/ Deadset Society.
Tuesday, October 17 – Dirty Rotten Imbeciles w/ VAMT.
Friday, October 20 – The Obsessed and Cobalt.
Monday, October 30 – Motograter.
Friday, November 3 – He Is Legend.
Friday, November 10 – 40 Below Summer.
Thursday, November 16– Smile Empty Soul w/ Prey For Maria, Manic Methed, The Prodepressants and Next Attempt.
Saturday, January 27 – Sweet Whiskey Pussy (Debut), Stout and others.
Tuesday, April 3 – Udo Dirkschneider.
The Warehouse Concert Lounge ( Clarksville Tn)
Saturday, October 28 – Soulfly w/ Harms Way, Noiesm, Lody Kong, Autumn Lies Buried and Granshaw.
Wicks On Baxter
Saturday, October 28 – Prey For Maria and Manic Methed.
Sunday, October 29 – Anagnorisis, Deapscufa and Stagecoach Inferno.