Tag Archives: candlelight records

Presenting the Inaugural Edition of The Shockwave Festival

As readers of the PiercingMetal site and companion blog are very aware, we love to go to and cover concerts for the sake of larger awareness and just get a general kick out of seeing bands deliver their goods on the live stage. To me it’s very, very, exhilarating when it all comes down to it and I just find inspiration when I write about them or share photos from the performances with you all. That being said, it gives me great pleasure to announce another new festival that is launching this year for the summer of 2012. Presenting the Shockwave Festival (queue dramatic music).

The inaugural edition of the festival will feature both Fear Factory and Voivod as the apparent co-headliners and I guess depending on your level of excitement about each of them would gauge the level of anticipation in the overall event. Whatever the case may be it joins the ranks of the Rockstar Mayhem Fest, The Summer Slaughter Fest and also appears to be a good replacement for the no longer running Sounds Of The Underground Festival that ended in 2007. Check out the list of the rest of the performers on the event.

The Bands: Fear Factory, Voivod, Cattle Decapitation, Misery Index, Revocation, Havok, Dirge Within, Last Chance to Reason, Vildhjarta, The Browning, Forged in Flame.
Continue reading Presenting the Inaugural Edition of The Shockwave Festival

Fear Factory @ Irving Plaza (7/25/2010)

Logo - Fear Factory

Artist: Fear Factory
Venue: Irving Plaza (New York, NY)
Opener: 36 Crazyfists, After The Burial, Divine Heresy
Date: 7/26/2010
Label: Candlelight Records

It’s been awhile since I have seen Fear Factory in action and that was for a number of reasons when it came down to it. The first was based on the band kind of splitting up and reuniting at the same time at around April 2009 and the band that I “knew” as Fear Factory would cease to exist while one that was a little more familiar to legacy fans took shape. I admit that I was a newer fan of the bands body of work but I did always enjoy their shows and was saddened by some of the decisions they made for the sake of the “good of the name”. Anyways, they had just released the new album “Mechanize” which was getting solid reviews across the board and they had embarked on their “Fear Across America” tour which brought along Divine Heresy, After The Burial and 36 Crazyfists. The show was at Irving Plaza and here is how the night went down for those who had interest.

Divine Heresy: Sadly I would walk in just as this band was completing their set as the times were not clear as to when it was starting off after doors opened but that was okay as I had only recently saw Divine Heresy and they were not much my cup of tea. The band is heavy and features Dino Cazares of Fear Factory along with Tim Yeung on drums (who is killer), but I think I need a little more exposure to them to figure what it is all supposed to be about. I had seen the band with their then new singer Travis Neal when they toured with Moonspell last year and had felt they were a mismatch for the Gothic Metal sound of that particular band. Fast forwarding to today I had to say that I did find it amusing that Cazares own newer band was opening up for the group he was once again a member of though. After The Burial was up almost immediately after their set had finished.

After The Burial: I don’t recall ever seeing ATB in concert before tonight so I was approaching their set as an education into their style and delivery. The band is on Sumerian Records which is a label that seems to be catering to these Progressive Metalcore and Deathcore bands of late so I expected these dudes to be of that genre classification. I was correct in the assumption and for an opening band felt that they were doing some good up there. While I didn’t know too many of their songs I did know that their latest album is called “In Dreams” and is available on Sumerian along with a re-issue of their “Rareform” CD. To gauge them after one show I would have to say that it was pretty good and I would be willing to see them again. Up next, the 36 Crazyfists.

36 Crazyfists: Straight outta Kenai, Alaska came the direct support for the night in 36 Crazyfists and this is a band that we have seen on a wide variety of shows in various spots in the running order. I haven’t seen them since their appearance with In Flames in late 2008 and that was okay by me since it depends on my mood and the show itself whether I will enjoy them or not. The band is a no holds barred Metalcore act and they have been around the block a number of times and also on a number of labels. They went from Roadrunner Records to DRT and now sit firmly on Ferret Music which I think is a good fit for them. Their latest release is entitled “Collisions and Castaways” and it would be officially released on the Tuesday following this particular show. Fronted by Brock Lindow, the band was full throttle energy from the opening tune, a new one, “In The Midnights” and it didn’t sound bad. The would not focus too much on this release since most people didn’t have it yet unless they downloaded it illegally somewhere and instead chose to focus their core of the set on their back catalog with tunes from “The Tide And Its Takers”, “Rest Inside The Flames” and “A Snow Capped Romance” Come to think of it, the band seemed to be paying attention to every one of their albums which was interesting to observe in a direct support slot. I guess they wanted to leave the crowd with a solid foundation if they were new to the bands sound. While I can say that I usually enjoy 36CF in concert, I could safely say that the audience was not all that supportive and I felt that they were saving their energy for the imminent assault to be delivered by Fear Factory. There were some fans that I spoke to that also felt that there should have been a “better” or “different” band in the main support slot as well as this was a band that they were not all that interested in anymore. Despite those views, the guys did their job well and were done before you knew it. Now it was time for the “return” of Fear Factory.

Fear Factory: So I mentioned how there were some changes in the Fear Factory camp and let me quickly outline them for you. I was NOT one of their loyalists back in the early days, so the band I came to know as FF was Burton, Ray, Christian and Byron. They toured a lot and we covered them several times and always felt it was a Metal hurricane inside whatever venue it was but this year a new lineup was announced as Burton reunited with founding guitarist Dino Cazares and would continue with Stroud on bass but the drums would be monster master player Gene Hoglan. At the same time of this lineups activity both drummer Herrera and guitarist Wolbers are keeping active with the band Arkaea while also fighting with Bell and Cazares about the usage of the name Fear Factory since both are still considered active members of the group. You will have to tune into Bravewords.com for additional episodes of “As The Metal Band Turns” since I need to get back to the concert report. If you have ever seen a video clip or a show of Fear Factory before you know that they hit the ground running and this would be the case tonight without question. As a front man, Burton Bell is right up in the audience’s faces and leans over the security barrier pit to incite frenzy in his ardent fans and of course as soon as they took to the stage the bodies were flying. There was a healthy mosh pit brewing in the center of the venue while crowd surfer after crowd surfer made their way into the waiting arms of the security folks. They would open up with the new albums title track “Mechanize” and while the album had been out for several months it was all still pretty new to me. I liked the reaction it got that was for sure and feared for my safety when the band thundered into “Shock” from their 1998 3rd album “Obsolete”.

Despite this being perceived as “the new Fear Factory” by many, it did not seem to matter in the eyes of the audience tonight because you had the original voice and the original founding guitarist back in command of the enterprise again with their long time bassist and crushing drum skills of Hoglan. Now I am a big fan of how Ray Herrera plays in this band but felt that if someone else had to be selected at least it was someone as technically proficient as he was. We get that in spades with Hoglan. As the set progressed it was more about the musical delivery than idle stage banter and that was fine by me. I didn’t want this to be a talky show since that would ruin the momentum of the show. They would deliver four tunes from the new “Mechanize” release and touch upon a number of the other trinkets from their back catalog but after looking at the set list post show, seemed to avoid the “Transgression” album entirely. Perhaps this was due to its being written entirely by Herrera and Wolbers. The show seemed to be coming to its end with “Demanufacture” which came to some as a surprise since we were only eleven songs in and this was the headliner set but that was a ruse as the guys returned for not one but four encore numbers. The would send the audience home into the hot summer air with two songs from “Demanufacture” in “H-K (Hunter-Killer)” and “Replica” and by doing so seemed to make this particular album the most represented at the show after the new release. One has to wonder if we shall soon see Fear Factory doing a tour where a full single album of note is performed as we find bands like Iron Maiden, Rush and Judas Priest doing. Only time will tell.

In the end this was an exciting show, but I think I would have swapped a couple of the openers and put a different direct support in myself to make it more than worth the audience dollar. If I gauged my understanding of the venue properly, the show while not originally sold out was completely packed by the night of the gig which is a good thing to observe. I have attended far too many shows where there was a less than admirable draw and that does no good for the Metal scene on the whole. Be sure to check out the new Fear Factory CD “Mechanize” and to follow the other dramatics going on in their camp by following popular news feeds like the aforementioned Bravewords.com. My Metal adventures would continue with the middle week appearance of Immolation and then when Michael Schenker Group hits town next weekend.

36 Crazyfists Set List:
1. In The Midnights
2. We Gave It Hell
3. I’ll Go Until My Heart Stops
4. At The End Of August
5. Elysium
6. The Heart & The Shape
7. Felt Through A Phone Line
8. Installing The Catheter
9. Death Renames The Light
10. The All Night Lights

Fear Factory Set List:
1. Mechanize
2. Shock
3. Edgecrusher
4. Smasher/Devourer
5. Acres Of Skin
6. Linchpin
7. Powershifter
8. Fear Campaign
9. Martyr
10. Final Exit
11. Demanufacture
12. Self Bias Resistor
13. Zero Signal
14. H-K (Hunter Killer)
15. Replica

I didn’t take any other “happenings” photos this evening but did snare a shot of the crowd going insane.

The Fear Factory Audience Approves

Official Website: http://www.fearfactory.com
Official Website: http://www.36crazyfists.com
Official Website: http://www.aftertheburial.com
Official Website: http://www.divineheresy.com


Obituary @ Blender Theater at Gramercy (9/29/2009)

Logo - Obituary

Artist: Obituary
Venue: Blender Theater at Gramercy (New York, NY)
Opener: Goatwhore, Krisiun, The Berzerker, Warbringer
Date: 9/29/2009
Label: Candlelight Records

Whew! What an interesting week this had been so far and we were only at Tuesday if you can believe it. For me it started last week with the “Hard Drive Live” tour that put All That Remains and Lacuna Coil together, and then I let my weekend slide me into the Metal with a rock solid dose of Kittie, Soil, Arkaea and Straight Line Stitch. Given this was a Sunday show, I had to say that it was an interesting way to kick off ones week and that was one hell of a show even if the roster of the bands was a little strange to me. That would prove to be a proper warm up for the NYC return of Floridian Death Metal masters Obituary who were back once again and bringing a solid support structure for their manner of devastation. I last caught Obituary over at B.B. King’s at around the same time of last year, but tonight’s gig would find me at The Gramercy Theatre – a space where more of the Metal shows of this kind seem to be happening of late. This gig made a lot more sense when reviewed on paper and then brought to life as it would be started off by Warbringer and Berzerker and then the main talent would come via Krisiun, Goatwhore and the main act. Such a healthy roster meant this show would start earlier and on time and we just made it inside the venue when Warbringer was hitting their first notes. Here are some thoughts about the evening in the event that you missed it.
Continue reading Obituary @ Blender Theater at Gramercy (9/29/2009)

“New Metal Leader” by Ross The Boss

Artist: Ross The Boss
Title: “New Metal Leader”
Label: Candlelight Records
Release Date: 1/13/2009
Genre: Heavy Metal
Rating: 4/5

You know his name very well from being one of the founding members of the group that told the Metal legions to “Hail and Kill” and with six albums with them under his belt Ross The Boss has finally returned to his public with a new band, new music and an album that recalls the glory days of Power Metal’s formative years. With such Metal classics as Manowar’s first six releases and their still being active in the game today you might be asking yourself if you can count on the RTB material to follow the standard that they have been setting and I can safely inform you that he is not, and thank the Metal powers that be that this is the case. Personally I have felt that the only thing that Manowar has been killing for the past few years and albums is my overall interest in them for rather than continuing to rally the troops on Metal’s behalf, they have become a joke of their own design. Of course I am not alone in this opinion but I am also only on the judgmental side as well for there are those fans who would walk blindly into the fire with the band even though this is no longer my viewpoint. Ross’ new band was formed from the seeds of a Manowar Tribute act that he enjoyed performing with and realized that the potential for future greatness lay within. His prowess at the lead guitar and song writing of this kind compiled with capable musicians makes “New Metal Leader” a truly fantastic listen. I mentioned that he did not follow the exact path that his former band did, but yet with this being so, there is a regal majesty to many of the songs found on the release and a number of its topics deal with the whole sword and sorcery/high adventure theme. The upside to every tune is that nothing at all sounds dated or tired. This is an exciting album that leads you into new paths of adventure from the opening flourish of “I.L.H.”. “Blood Of Knives” thunders with power while “I Got The Right” might be one of those tunes that the audience sings along with the band to and it continues on in righteous fashion. “Matador” is rather epic on its own and another clear winner comes at us via “Death And Glory” and “Plague Of Lies”. Good stuff that had me head banging after only a few minutes of listening.
Continue reading “New Metal Leader” by Ross The Boss

Abigail Williams @ Blender Theater at Gramercy (7/23/2009)

Logo - Abigail Williams

Artist: Abigail Williams
Venue: Blender Theater (New York, NY)
Opener: Goatwhore, Daath, SWAATS, Abysmal Dawn
Date: 7/23/2009
Label: Candlelight Records

They called this tour the “Conquer And Curse” tour and it pretty much came on the heels of two days of Summer Slaughtering in NYC by being held at the Gramercy Theatre only a few days after that massive lineup of Death Metal had paid a visit. For “Conquer And Curse” we found a headlining Abigail Williams with direct support coming from Goatwhore and while we really enjoy what AW does we had to admit that we were one of the many who were scratching our heads about the band headlining something like this. It would also feature the Metal might of S.W.W.A.A.T.S., Abysmal Dawn and Daath, all three amounting to bands that had never been seen by these Metal eyes so that made me sure to get inside the venue in time to catch the show from the start. Leading off the roster of crushing brutality would be S.W.W.A.A.T.S.
Continue reading Abigail Williams @ Blender Theater at Gramercy (7/23/2009)