BLUE OCTOBER 

OCTOBER 22, 2017

TOYOTA MUSIC FACTORY

IRVING, TX

SUPPORT: THE SCORE, POLYPHONIC SPREE

Review by: Cherri Bird

Photos by: Cherri Bird

 

 

BLUE OCTOBER has been around since their inception in 1995 and I have seen this band come up in rank and file. Yet even after seeing them play a gazillion times, tonight was the first night that I was able to photograph them “officially”. I can also say that with these gazillion shows under my belt, I’ve never walked away from one going, “Well, that show sucked!”. Ever.

 

If you are familiar with the band and their story, CONGRATULATIONS! If you don’t know the skinny behind the band, it’s really not anything that is super out of the ordinary: band forms, band does great in hometown, band expands to other cities, band does better, band gets a hit on the radio, band gets bigger, band tours nationally, band gets bigger, band gets another hit, and another, and another on radio nationwide and worldwide, band gets bigger...you know that drill. Only this didn’t happen in a year or two or over a cycle of their first record. Hell, they were signed to a major in 1999 and then dropped (Universal Records) in 2000, which was 17 years ago. In that respect, there isn’t much of a difference between any other successful band. That is if you’re looking at them based on scribbles on paper. But you can’t do this with BLUE OCTOBER.

 

See, the other bands that might have that similar story, don’t have JUSTIN FURSTENFELD as their frontman. Other bands don’t have a brother duo like JEREMY & JUSTIN FURSTENFELD. Sure, there are gobs of bands that have brothers that play together. But those other brothers in bands aren’t like the two in BLUE OCTOBER.. Some of those bands may have a versatile player that can play any instrument set in front of them. But they don’t have RYAN DELAHOUSSAYE who plays the violin, keys, guitar and probably could play the mouth harp - or whatever that thing is like Snoopy plays with The Gang...I totally bet he could rock that shit! And sure, we’ve all heard the ribbing about the bass players of bands not being important or needed or whatever...but one cannot deny the keen and suave importance, and as equally talented than MATT NOVESKEY in the band’s music, not to mention within the band’s day to day haps. And even if MATTHEW OSTRANDER isn’t a founding member, he has the stage presence and talent that oozes BLUE. (And to be fair, I have to include C.B. HUDSON because his influence and style of playing gave BLUE OCTOBER a notch in the leather belt of rock and roll).

 

Y’all can HATE ME and even if y’all wanna roll your eyes and argue about 11 bands that, on paper, are just like BLUE OCTOBER, I won’t be able to stop myself in trying to convince you that this band is super unique and one of a kind. Because in truth, they really are. There isn’t another band that has a frontman quite as dynamic as JUSTIN. In all facets, really. Musically, lyrically, stage presence, personality, talent, vocal style/tone, physically - all things that JUSTIN has had going for him probably since he could talk, but let’s just say since the formation of BLUE OCTOBER, shall we? And like every coin, there’s the other side; the UGLY SIDE as one song says, that no one but JUSTIN has that creates a perfect yin and yang, for the band. I bet some would agree with me, maybe JUSTIN too, that finally, after so much upheaval and pain, that this can now be seen off stage as well; that balance is restored within him as well.

 

For me, what makes BLUE OCTOBER so appealing, now and then, is the brutal honesty that JUSTIN brings to his music and how that honesty makes its way up and out of his mouth so beautifully. Along with to the music that the band writes and creates that backs him up, this honestly just is. The balance doesn’t just exist with JUSTIN. No, it exists with all of the members in equal ways. And this is why IMHO the band is amazing and still selling out shows all over the country. But hold up...look, I’m not the expert on BLUE OCTOBER and I can’t put their HISTORY FOR SALE up here, nor is that my intention.

 

Starting out, the house lights were on and everyone could see everyone else; like a big family gathering or a convention of sorts. Everyone was chatting and the rise of energy was almost like a front coming in to change the weather. And then one white light gleamed out into the audience, then another, then another...and the music came up, while in the darkness with those beams casting shadows and cascading light into that darkness, like a beacon shining INTO THE OCEAN to guide a ship home - the show started.

 

The first three songs were kind of a blur for me, to be honest. I didn’t even move from the position I was in at the front of the stage because I’ll be frank, I couldn’t move. I’ve never stayed in one place in the photo pit before. I think in some ways, some part of me still doesn’t feel like a “real” photographer. I mean, I don’t think I am in a professional way. I always tell people that too and say that I just think pictures add to my reviews or interviews. If you’ve followed me for any amount of time, you’ll know that I love band photography where you can see the emotion or the movement behind a band. And that’s how I take pictures by watching and waiting for those energetic bursts or parts in a song that I need to capture.

 

TBH, it’s totally all FEAR as to why I don’t call myself a “photographer”. If I did, that would leave my pictures open to being judged or scrutinized. And I just figured that out now, adding these thoughts on the 4th edit of this draft. Interesting how that little piece of self-revelation happened, huh?

 

What that paragraph above boils down to is that I don’t feel “good enough” a lot of the time and while I do my best to instill an attitude of confidence or knowledge that I am ok and enough for whatever situation or scenario comes up...it is easy to fall short in uncomfortable situations. What does all of this have to do with BLUE OCTOBER, you ask? Well, I hope this example will SWAY you into a better understanding of the band.

 

Their music has always drawn a hopeful and pretty picture for me, despite some of the hard truths twisted up in the lyrics. I’ve always related to the prose JUSTIN scribes, no matter how dark of a place they come from. I admire his resilience and his ability to continue PICKING UP THE PIECES and carry on. Or to look at himself and change something that is toxic or harmful about his relationships or even within him personally. Man, he just keeps trying no matter how hard shit gets thrown at him! I wish everyone had this within them. I think this is the same for a lot of fans; that somehow, he speaks the things we can’t muster out of us, until the day we can. Oddly enough, I believe that BLUE OCTOBER has assisted in parts of me becoming aware of things within myself, far too mundane and boring to draw out here, though. Perhaps another time...hmm?

 

For the sake of this actually being a review of their show, I’ll go ahead with what I experienced that night. With the intensity of rolling the heaviest boulder in thick mud around a room, BLUE OCTOBER delivered a show that makes an audience sweat, sing, weep, smile, recollect, relive, and feel all of the slivers of our lives, as we breathed deep to exert the energy to move this boulder through the DIRT ROOM for two plus hours on Saturday.

 

Most importantly, I saw people living life at this concert; like in front of my eyes! I mean I saw a guy get down on his knees and propose to his girl, right there in General Admission. I spoke to a woman that was seeing the band for the first time that night and her makeup was smudged from tears of awe. I heard a long time fan quiet his friends around me when the band started as he said “It’s time for church…”. I heard everyone singing every word of every song and I watched as eyes were affixed to the stage, unable to blink as if their lids were glued open on purpose. I saw kids with their parents, gaggles of BFFs, and clusters of guys all there to see BLUE OCTOBER. And driving HOME, I realized that seeing BLUE OCTOBER plugs me back into feeling my life - the good and the bad. You know?

 

BLUE OCTOBER has the gift of performance, song, poetry and reaching into a person’s heart to cause a reaction. These reactions cause a bond that, for me, has continued for 20 years. If I were asked to think of another band that had what BLUE OCTOBER has, I am not sure I could. I’m not sure there is a formula to replicate what happens on the stage at a BLUE OCTOBER show. I’m not even sure you or anyone could mold a band like them, period. I think the lines that connect the dots in designing the blueprint of BLUE OCTOBER are created by sheer spontaneous explosions from JUSTIN, RYAN, JEREMY, MATT and MATTHEW and their separate movements in life. And because of these movements, and how they BLEED OUT, they are able to propel this unmistakable understanding of the human condition to those that hear them.

 

Follow the band on Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube and treat yourself to not only their recorded music but treat yourself and go see a show. You may walk away a completely different person...and maybe their music will give you some peace, hope and affirmation that love does exist, people can change and that we are all right where we’re supposed to be.

 

BLUE OCTOBER IS: Justin Furstenfeld, Matt Noveskey, Ryan Delahoussaye, Jeremy Furstenfeld and Matthew Ostrander  

 

 

Til Next Time - MRML

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

we came as romans cold like war admat
WE CAME AS ROMANS

 

COLD LIKE WAR

 

SHARPTONE RECORDS

 

Review by: Cherri Bird

 

 

 

 

You know, I’m not even going to begin to set up a picture for this record. I mean I really shouldn’t have to for those of you that know WE CAME AS ROMANS. And for those of you reading this review that aren’t fans or haven’t heard of this band, setting this record up on paper doesn’t do anything, really. I want y’all to just read this review and then go buy it because you will find what you are looking for - I swear to god, you will - in the 10 song offering by WE CAME AS ROMANS.

 

  1. VULTURES WITH CLIPPED WINGS - god help me! Where does that drop with the kick-punch come from? Literally, made me want to slam against the wall, like body slam, slam dance around the loft with myself. And not like BILLY IDOL taught us either...this song will produce an internal earthquake. Prepare yourselves.
  2. COLD LIKE WAR - I love the tinkle-tickling in the background which distracted my thoughts just enough until, like a measuring tape comes back to its holster, the chorus came rushing in...I will literally throw my hands up in worship (no false idols, mind you) when I hear this song now. Where the flying phat fuck did the chorus come from?? I’ll tell you where...WCAR took it from the sound a flock of angels flying. That’s where it comes from bitches!! Holy shit!!!
  3. TWO HANDS - YES!! All of this song; what JOSHUA MOORE writes about. ALL of it is what I want to say to you-know-who. No joke here folks, the waterworks started when I connected with the lyrics and what I felt from the song’s sounds. Like a vulture that has been circling above me is what this song encapsulates for me personally, and it’s like I realized that I have been trying to verbalize this message for the last year or so after my divorce. That circling bird above finally swooped down… Cheese And Rice, that’s a good f’ing song! “I’m not OK - you’re not the better half of me…” & “I’m trying to breathe underwater - like two hands that can’t hold each other…” “I can breathe & finally let you go…” UGHH and yes...whew!
  4. LOST IN THE MOMENT - badass mid-melody tucked back up in there! Where this song sticks with me: I felt like I was being pulled out of a tar pit - when you start to wake up to some of these blinding stars, flaring at your face. You either blink or you take it all in hoping you don’t go blind when the light dims. You have to look at the moments in life for what they are in the big picture...am I lost or am I found??? The cut-times do it for me every time and WE CAME AS ROMANS know how to fit those in perfectly.
  5. FOREIGN FIRE - I love the heavy vocal at the start with the power backed up with the breaks and booms in this song. Fuck! Sometimes my heart feels like those sounds. Odd though, isn’t it when you finally realize or see yourself within the story of the song? The last half of this track might break you, so be strong pretties...
  6. WASTED AGE - stir it up f’ers!!! I loved this song when it came out as a single - I think it was the first off this record, maybe - I think? The energy is unreal. OMGojira - who plays the bass this fast? Jezus!! Wrapped in the middle of this sweet sammich of a song is where WCAR grabs your heart and yanks it down to the bottom of your gut - so watch out for that!
  7. ENCODER - what makes WCAR so masterfully musically magnificent is the crazy connections that they put together - and WHAMO - a track like THIS comes out. “The only time I learn is from mistakes…” #speakit
  8. IF THERE’S NOTHING TO SEE - love the synth and bass drum X2...where this and a lot of the tracks on “Cold Like War”, echo this dark AF undertone that house some pretty massive holes that humans can carry. Ya dig? I think these echoes that bounce around are where WCAR soars as a collective because I fucking pick up what they’re putting down.
  9. PROMISE ME - Seriously. Check me in right now. What is coming through this track so fucking LOUD for me is “will I be remembered…” godamit. THIS is what I’ve been trying to express to them, to my girls, to readers - no one wants to feel forgotten. Where does our footprint land with the people we come in contact with sporadically or to those that we see every day? For me, I have felt that the two most important things in my life might forget or worse, be bent by words and actions that make them forget.  Wow…
  10. LEARNING TO SURVIVE -Burning my bridges to light the way” = massive life lesson. The concoction of the tempo and pure honesty in this track; quick like a gallop to having to slow down to really understand what is happening is where the tempo takes you. I mean it can’t be full throttle or we’d never learn or grow - but fuck, life can feel like this, right? Slow down, slow down, slow down...and take a breath. This is what I have to remember to tell myself...and this song’s structure helps recall this reminder.

 

DUDE. What just happened? Let me tell you - I’ve been baptized: dunked, doused, splashed, sunk and brought out by “Cold Like War” and WE CAME AS ROMANS. I am born again bitches!!!

 

Catch WE CAME AS ROMANS on tour this fall. Take a look at their FACEBOOK page for dates and more info on where to pick up “Cold Like War” next Friday and DO IT.  

 

Til Next Time - MRML

 

 

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POWERMAN 5000

 

NEW WAVE

 

Pavement Entertainment

 

Review by: Cherri Bird

 

 

 

 

Who wouldn’t be intrigued by the cover art for POWERMAN 5000’s new record “NEW WAVE”? I mean, anyone that loves Frank from “DONNIE DARKO” (or finds that masked rabbit man wildly scary) and loves POWERMAN 5000 will bend like mercury and say, “Why, yes I will listen to this record…”! I mean that’s not saying that the dude on the cover is supposed to be Frank...it’s just what I thought of when I saw it.

 

Industrial metal would not be where it is or where it’s branched off from had this band not paved the dark and creepy backroads, right? Right. This record takes everything that is POWERMAN 5000 and supercharges all of them. It’s not over the top and it’s not just something like a dead fish flopped on a table, either. This record really speaks to who the band is and gives fans what they love about POWERMAN 5000. And look, there’s nothing wrong with doing what you’re the best at doing. If bands have to reinvent themselves with every record, they’d probably come up with different names, wouldn’t they?

 

  1. FOOTSTEPS AND VOICES - a track that takes everything we love about POWERMAN 5000 and fine tunes those breaks, triumphant choruses and grinding industrial-like guitars and boosts it with some new elements. It is thick and scary AF, Y'all!
  2. HOSTAGE - give in to POWERMAN 5000!! I’ll take this primal heart beating song as a ransom note because I’m totally down to what the rest of the record is going to pull from me. It’s a loud AF number that will cautiously have you looking for someone to hold you captive.
  3. SID VICIOUS IN A DRESS - only Spider can describe a lover as such...and I’m pretty positive that it rings very close to true! I love the tempo that charges like this chic does his heart! I dig the imagery towards the end when he talks about burning this fucker to the ground! Yes!!
  4. DAVID FUCKING BOWIE - ooh a sexy little number and that low growling voice...meow! But seriously, I can definitely see the paradox with something like Bowie’s “Dancing In The Streets” to where the likeness to “Major Tom” at the bridge-like middle makes a statement.
  5. CULT LEADER - if I were to say in response, “I think you kinda are…” I mean let’s be honest, people have all sorts of cult leaders - musicians, patriots, politicians - we all want to follow. But why do we have to? I mean why is it so hard for humans to just be - and be comfortable in our own skin? Not sure, but when we do give up on ourselves, we are subjected to being whatever it is they want us to be…
  6. NO WHITE FLAGS - with a nice groove behind this track, it’s almost bluesy. But of course, it’s infused with signatures of POWERMAN 5000, although subtle, they’re there. It’s in the drama of the orchestral pieces that fuse the distortion of the guitar and the swoons of the vocal. I love this song for all of the things that it screams lyrically and that it shows something stronger than hard hammering verses and pummelling choruses.
  7. THANK GOD - this 1:11 gem is everything that you want to make your fucking anthem!! It’s fast, furious, loud and brutal.
  8. DIE ON YOUR FEET - get ready for it...I love the bass. I love the breaks and the drops! It belongs in a scene from a movie loud AF! I can see this song being massive live. It’s as full as a tick on the neck of a rabbit!
  9. GET A LIFE - creepy and sarcastically dark, you know how POWERMAN 5000 loves to write music. This song is totally making fun of the shallow parts of people - that I’m convinced are in everyone. I mean, there are times that we have to be assholes, aren’t there??
  10. RUN FOR YOUR LIFE - where this song soars is the element of freakishly truthful messages infused within. The techno tidbits make it another candidate for the big screen and it’s one of those numbers that is all POWERMAN 5000.

 

The band is on tour this fall and you’re going to wanna be there to hear these tracks live. I mean, I’m totally down to hear the whole record if that’s what they wanna do - pick this record up on any online music store or check out the band’s Facebook page for more details on dates and special ticketing when they roll through your town!

 

 

GOJIRA

Gas Monkey Live

OCTOBER 13, 2017

Dallas, TX

SUPPORT: CODE ORANGE, TORCHE

 

 

 

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Since 1996, this group (then known as Godzilla) - GOJIRA has whittled away at world domination in the death metal realm of music. Now, two decades later they’re on the verge of achieving it through the evolution of themselves and their music. Their current record “MAGMA” is far from where the band started those many moons ago and it is with this record that has shot them into the Gen Pop of Metal. Now, I’m not saying that this was the intent of the band when they started but with a name like Godzilla which morphed into GOJIRA, what more could their intention be? Perhaps subconsciously they set out to bring their methods of metal to the forefront but look, the brothers JOE and MARIO DUPLANTIER that have been hammering out song after song since they were in their teens, there has to be a reason, right? I mean, seriously. This is the path - this is what these guys do and let me tell you, they are damn near close to perfection.

 

The first time I saw Gojira live was at Psycho Vegas this past summer. Holy monster mash, they were fantastic! They were loud AF and leaving their set after they had all but ear-banged us all, I was hooked. I didn’t know half of what they were saying and I was blinded by the brightest lights I’ve ever seen shoot off a stage, but godamit I loved them!

 

When I saw they were coming to Dallas in October, I was there, that’s for sure. I think I put in for credentials in like July or something. I watched the days tick by and as the 13 of October rolled up, it was like Easter morning as a kid. I say Easter because of the candy and the little trinkets we’d get when I was a kid. I knew that I was about to get some metal candy at the show and possibly more hearing loss - but I was down for it and couldn’t wait. What I didn’t know until sitting down to write this was how this band's influence has really encapsulated what I have been talking about for the last year or so; the connections music strengthens in us all.

 

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Literally, this show was the first I’ve ever worn earplugs to. Ya, call me dumb or whatever - but I’ve never really stood right in front of a speaker and I’ve always been cautious at shows. I know that I can’t say I haven’t damaged my ears with music. I totally have. But I attribute that loss to listening to my Walkman at the 10 volume setting from 13 - 17 and not going to shows. However, I wasn’t going to chance this tonight!

 

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I shoved those spongy weird gum sticks into my ears and prepared myself to have my hair blown back from the pit for the first 3 songs. Lovelies, it was fucking fantastic to be almost at the source of the beauty that is GOJIRA! The brutal double bass that MARIO dished out like it was his own pulse, pummelled the hell out of me and the screaming crowd behind me. As fans stretched out their arms as if to just feel the magnitude of music that washed over them was enough, some reached out further for JOE, CHRISTIAN and JEAN-MICHEL like a lifeboat. The power that reigned down and out was something that I’ve yet to experience live. It was energizing and like a zap of radiant energy plugged us into being alive - like we were toy Frankensteins; all on our own little tables and from the first notes, we were shocked into waking up.

 

The other aspect of this show that I loved were the lights. I know I’ve talked about the lights at a show a couple of times at shows here recently. But GOJIRA has a look onstage that isn’t one that can be easily duplicated. Now, lights are lights, I get it. But this four piece almost uses them as another instrument or another member on stage. They duck in and out of the bands of color that stream down like peeking around trees or caverns in Middle Earth.

 

Maybe it is due to their French nationality that bring a je ne sais quoi to their performance. And in using that term, to not adequately be able to describe something, in this case, the essence of GOJIRA’s live show is just that. There is something primal, something that oozes an appeal to people visually and found within their music. And if you watch them on stage, without sound, you may hear something totally different than what they are playing. I dunno - that probably doesn’t make any sense whatsoever. But - it is like watching a painting or a piece of art that just grabs you by the gut and pulls you in for as long as you’ll let it. It’s almost overwhelming just through watching then add on top of that the music and man, you’ve got yourself one helluva show.

 

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To this point, GOJIRA has won over metal fans here in the states over the past few years, I’m sure by their live show. Their current record “MAGMA” is the band’s outreach of their inner selves, a conquest of sorts and while it is a departure from prior records vocally, JOE has said that leaving “death metal” in the rearview and just creating what they felt, was somewhat difficult for him because he wasn’t sure how fans would react. However, in the end, what became more important was remaining true to themselves. GOJIRA has found the ultimate reason for art and the creation. It mirrors evolution and it is welcomed and needed.

 

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I love that some want to coin GOJIRA as just another band that has sold out to the mainstream. I love that these are the people that can’t seem to understand the evolution that I spoke about above. I mean, let’s take the labels out of music. Let’s describe music and the shows we see in terms with how these things make us feel or how they make our connections stronger. Let’s take a band’s ability to change our insides, almost and embrace this and be true to what we feel and see through the power of music. THIS is exactly what GOJIRA did for me.

 

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If you didn’t get a chance to see GOJIRA on their headlining tour, scour the www and Facebook for some live video. It won’t be the same, the sound may be shitty, the picture shaky and off focus, but you may get to see that energy that I saw and felt at their Dallas show. You may only get it for a second, but at least you can see it. Then, prepare yourself for their return as a band to American soil - whenever that might be. If you miss their next tour for any reason, then I would say it is you that might want to look inward and see why you’re afraid to step out of the cell that you hold yourself in based solely on the loyalty to a genre. Because, my bet is that a ton of bands and fans have stepped out and are not only diggin’ the shit out of what they’re experiencing as fans, but I’d venture to guess that they’re stronger people for doing so. It’s ok to feel something - no one can take those emotions away from you. So feel them...and if GOJIRA is the band that can pull this out of you, then they have done the most important of acts and achieved the honor of honors.

 

GOJIRA is:
Joe Duplantier - Guitar, Vocals | Mario Duplantier - Drums | Christian Andreu - Guitar | Jean-Michel Labadie - Bass

 

All through music...pretty f’ing cool, no?

 

Til Next Time - MRML

 

All images © Cherri Bird/Sheri Birk. All rights and laws apply. Please contact for republication or any digital copying; including reposting without proper credit.

 

 

GEMINI SYNDROME

OCTOBER 23, 2017

Gas Monkey Bar & Grill

Dallas, TX

Review by: Cherri Bird

 

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THOSE THAT WALK AMONG US

When you have a band that often draws out some pretty deep or to say the least, buried emotions, you know that connection is more than just rockin’ out or a party song that you and your chums sing while hanging out somewhere. There are those that walk among us that are meant to deliver these connections from a power greater than themselves; these people are here on Earth, you just have to find them or be open to letting them find you.

 

I first saw GEMINI SYNDROME last summer during their tour that was queuing up for their latest work “MEMENTO MORI” to drop. Now, it’s not the first time I had heard of the band and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t the first time I was seeing them live. I sat in on an interview with a colleague and as I listened to AARON NORDSTROM, singer for the band, with his soft-spoken voice, but loud AF words, it was the first time I remember connecting with their music on a different level.

 

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Signs and symbols are all around us. I think our subconscious looks for them or they look for those that are paying attention. It’s not a secret either that GEMINI SYNDROME uses symbols and signs in their music, artwork and in their daily life actually. Truth be told, I think AARON has the innate ability to capture these vibrations from this whacky world we live in and interpret them as he sees fit.

 

Now, what I dig is that AARON’s interpretations or his perceptions have translated to something that I have been able to understand and absorb. Like the track “Sorry Not Sorry” is not only a song that is appealing because of the way it’s written - the drops and bridge that give a jump and fists up kinda groove. Fused with the melody of the song are they lyrics that fuse the thought-provoking pieces, at least for me, that make this band so strong. Same with “Remember We Die” and going back to 2013 with “Stardust”. (Oooh and this is one of my favorite songs from that year, PS. I adore the melody and the chorus and the bassline is sick AF.)

 

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It’s one thing to pick this up from a record; it’s a whole other thing for a band to be able to deliver this live. GEMINI SYNDROME, hands down, delivers what a listener finds trapped in the songs of their records. From what an audience member sees on stage with the animated and engaging way BRIAN STEELE MEDINA plays the kit, to AP’s boisterous bass playing, to the righteous riffs ringing through MEEGS’ and MAX’s guitars. Not to mention the very stoic movements of AARON around the stage; almost like a shaman that is showing the audience all of the secrets of humanity and the age-old questions of life.

 

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Call me crazy, but that is what I pulled out of the rabbit’s hat from GEMINI SYNDROME’s show at GAS MONKEY BAR AND GRILL this last Monday. The crowd for a Monday before Halloween wasn’t bad and they were all up in it for GEMINI SYNDROME. These were the fans that every band wants in their back pocket. And I know that GEMINI SYNDROME has some amazing fans that follow them religiously. Hearing from Dallas’ own DARK AVENUE was a treat and the stage was set with the heat from MARIO’s booming vocals, not to mention the rest of the band. I love DARK AVENUE and if you haven’t heard them, you need to. SPOKEN and DEADSET SOCIETY continued throwing fuel on the fire for GEMINI SYNDROME.

 

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Yes, yes my friends you can find the answers you’re seeking in music. AARON’s choice with where he places his words within the beats and the cadence of the verses captivate those that are listening or that are open to the vibrations that are flung wildly out of this band. I am not even sure they recognize how fast they’re lobbing out these chunks from their music when they’re playing. You can almost see the wake left from the energies that are fired off the stage!

 

There are those that walk among us that are messengers. Like AARON’s title defines him, he brings the same message in a live show that you’ll find on the records. Only, what you’re supposed to hear, you’ll not only hear; you’ll see it coming at you. It is up to you though to catch or take in these messages from those that are sent to deliver them.

 

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GEMINI SYNDROME has a few dates left on this tour so check out if they’re coming to your area. If they are, go. You might find something that you’ve been looking for - or that’s been looking for you.

GEMINI SYNDROME is: Alessandro AP Paveri | Dirty Low End * Meegs Rascõn | Guitars + Screams* Brian Steele Medina | Percussion + Art * Aaron Nordstrom | Messenger * Max Georgiev | Touring Guitar

 

Til Next Time - MRML -

All photos © The Bird’s Nest Media Group. All rights reserved and copyright enforced. To print, publish or post, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for permission/fees.

 

 

 

 

EDIE BRICKELL & THE NEW BOHEMIANS

THE BOMB FACTORY 

DEEP ELLUM, TEXAS

SEPTEMBER 16, 2017

 by: Cherri Bird

 

Spur of the moment, I went to shoot EDIE BRICKELL & THE NEW BOHEMIANS playing with THE OLD 97’s at THE BOMB FACTORY on Saturday night. It was that, or stay in and finish moving furniture around the loft that I started late Friday night. Of course, I opted for the opportunity to see one of my favorite bands from college and into my 20’s. Who wouldn’t right?


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Y’all, Time is kind of a funny monster. I remember loving EDIE BRICKELL and her folkish ways back in the day. I can see the cover of the CD like I’d had it in my hands yesterday (which I haven’t had since maybe 1991 or 1992). I remember songs like “WHAT I AM” and “LOVE LIKE WE DO”, and “NOTHING”. I loved the simplistic air in her songs; that were almost poetry set to music. Since then, I totally gravitate towards lyrics that have that punch of prose as a result of her music. I also dug the freeness or what I thought of as being free back then in 1988 or 1989 when I bought the tape first, then the CD and listened to it a gazillion times.

 

When she came on stage last night though, I didn’t recognize her. And I scoured my memory to recall her and I couldn’t. What I did remember was her hair of all things...but I remembered every word to every song she played off “SHOOTING RUBBERBANDS AT THE STARS”. And what she looked like then or now only raised the question within myself as to why I couldn’t recall her face. I can certainly recall other people and artists from that time. And while this point has nothing to do with her performance or her, it’s just an interesting point to bring up about time and music or music vs. time. Music can mark time, but it can also be timeless. Time can be good to a memory or it can erase some of the strangest things that I thought music would always help me recall.

 

It turns out that EDIE BRICKELL's music back then for me, was more about me than recalling a time or other people or even how I felt about other people. Every song I heard last night, brought up my own memories about myself and her music making me question some of the things about myself so that I could change what I wanted the answers to be. I think music can help us define ourselves, to help us chart a course or blaze a trail to becoming who we want to be.

 

The show was amazing; through the lens and then from the crowd. I found it really curious though that many of the people did not know who she was. How is that possible? It wasn’t that there was a younger crowd - I mean the OLD 97’S aren’t a new band by any means. I thought the pairing was great for 2017. But I wasn’t listening to the OLD 97’S in the late 80’s to early 90’s - but in hearing them last night, I would listen to them now. In fact, I dig the hell out of them and now wish that I would have gone to see them when they played down in Deep Ellum at places like Curtain Club, Trees and Dada.

 

EDIE BRICKELL was fabulous and her NEW BOHEMIANS backed her up like champs. I don’t know if these guys were the original band or what. But waking up this morning to edit some pictures, the show left me with some questions, like is this a comeback for her and the band? Was this a one-off show? Does she still feel like that free-spirited, whimsical girl or has life grounded her into a different peg hole?

 

I saw a woman on stage that was almost awestruck under the lights; an internal squabble about being under them that exposed that conflict in some ways. I saw a woman that took those empowering moments from the rubber bands we all shot up to the stars hoping for more than what we had at that time and music that had such an impact on so many almost 30 years ago. (Jesus mother of pearl - 30 years. What. The. Actual. Hell…) I heard a woman that could still sing like she did as a girl wanting to be a woman and I heard those underlining lyrics that fed us girls with independence, self-awareness and beginning to learn to be ok with going against the grain, almost give her strength.

 

I wondered as she looked over the sea of silhouetted heads in the crowd if she had missed this over the years. Missed this part of her life when she was who she was before the who she is now. I know she’s had a great career since with THE GADDABOUTS and playing and signing/touring with STEVE MARTIN. But I wondered if this definitive time when SHOOTING RUBBER BANDS AT STARS was for me, was as definitive for her. Or was it just a place in time that the significance isn’t as important as the product or outcome for both of us. I saw a beautiful woman that embodied doing what she did to make herself happy and a woman that did what her songs had taught her to do and to be. I saw a woman that didn’t conform or bend or break. I saw a woman that seriously despite what unknown trials she might have had; she was a success. She was successful because she remained true to herself.

 

Needless to say and in spite of the bottom part of the water coming to the top in my glass from her set, on the walk back to the loft, I felt connected to myself and to the past a little more than I have. Instead of feeling like I was hovering over the ground, like a tethered parade balloon being led by little people in matching suits that blended in with the scenery on the ground, I felt each step underfoot. And each of those steps had a purpose. As a matter of fact, all the steps behind me had a purpose in leading me right there.

 

Music creates vibrations that connect us to places in times; sometimes without our knowledge or approval. Finding what those connections are and sometimes what they hold for us is one brilliant part of human nature and finding the human spirit even within ourselves. And sometimes when we find it within ourselves, we find that same connection with everything else. We find that symbiotic feeling of being a part of everything and everyone and that, my Lovelies is the ultimate goal - finding ways to follow those vibrations.

 

Til Next TIme - MRML

PHOTO CREDIT: CHERRI BIRD © 2017

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M
AKEOUT

 

The Good Life

 

RISE RECORDS

 

by: Cherri Bird

 

 

 

 

CHILDISH - these lyrics are adulting speak or even recognizing that whatever he's going through and some of these are what he deems childish or childlike. It’s a playful tune seeded with the pangs of getting older and walking into a reckoning; yours or someone else’s.

 

CRAZY - nice cadence to a bouncy track that depicts a ton of 20-something relationship issues with any and everything. What is refreshing about CRAZY is all the elements that make up his depiction of this gal is all completely accurate #trustme. The guitars vacillate between balls-out nuts and genius.

 

LISA - the pure guitar tones remind me of a time where every going on in my world was paramount and full of these highly charged scenes and scenarios. What is fun about this record particularly this song LISA is it is real identifiable fun even if your old AF or past the 20-something years.

 

RIDE IT OUT - this song slows it down for the whole band and I'm sure live they need some type of ballad - sheesh! Where do they get all of the energy? Lofty choruses and a short bridge that does exactly that - connects the meat with the potatoes! What very pretty melody that is supercharged with EMO fusion at it’s finest; even for a slower number.

 

OPEN MINDED - what a kick-ass anthem! We all need to heed this advice found within the lyrics. Someone should snatch this fucker up for a new reality show about random strangers being judgemental dicks. Hmmm…on second thought better hold that idea to the table. ( © Cherri Bird,  2017 intellectual property rules and conditions apply the rules and regulations for details.)

 

YOU CAN’T BLAME ME - I did the way the song changes up in the content. It is really cool even as they still use the same guitar tones. This sound is ad will always be reminiscent of James Brogan of Samiam and his guitar tone that echoed off Bob Wills Dance Hall walls in Tulsa back in 1997. I love a good sound in music, that when heard can recall even those memories that are the farthest back.

 

CLOCKWORK - what I totally love about this band is the insertion of elements like choirs and half steps and drops of big riffs, coupled with the glory that is Emo. CLOCKWORK is no exception and it even goes deeper. This is my favorite song on the record because it speaks to what I referred to in YOU CAN'T BLAME ME, which is the song before this, oddly enough. But your prayer to God doesn't work here, sir. Just wait until you're 48, then you will understand that what you had a glimpse of in your 20’s pales in comparison to what reality IS when you’re 48.

 

TIL WE’RE GONE - nice piano in the intro, again kind of changing it up. I really enjoy the gate of the tempo. This lyric: “Fade into a memory till we're gone” - truer words were never spoken. Did he take into the account of how we move through life, exactly like a song’s vibrations played through an instrument. Gotta be honest, this one kind of stabbed my heart a little because of the sheer truth to what he said. All the days behind me that have done exactly that and one step further and simply vanished from my mind.

 

SALT LAKE CITY - odd how an Emo song can have the most melancholy subject or somewhat daunting lyrics and make it sound so happy. I wonder if this is why metalcore rose up so strong in the 2000s. Was it that we were tired of pretending that we were happy when really, what we were trying to convey is that we did have painful thoughts and things that hurt our feelings but we had to mask or band-aid them for appearance sake.

 

WHERE’S MY CHARGER - this is the epitome of why emo is the youth choice of their generation. Fast and furious, like a car that is sponsored by Pepsi, a band can in this vein can take a simple question like “Where’s my charger?” has almost the same meaning as asking a stranger in passing “how are you today?”. Keeping the distortion to a low scrape, MAKEOUT puts this to music in a 1:23 minute song and slaps it on the record. Why? Because it’s culturally relevant. It is the marker of an era like hair color is in DNA.

 

BLAST OFF - in the melody of this song there is woven in it the adios to the queerness of how you felt as a teen and as you move on into your twenties, you realize as you begin adulting, what you thought was factual and right and how it would be, was just a facade. What you thought becomes the tempo of the drums in BLAST OFF, quick from anxiety and hard pops that tell you almost minute by minute that you weren’t prepared at all. That you’d rather go back and write lyrics for emo music as you hide the pangs of adulting.

 

How do you rightly describe the music style of bands like GREEN DAY, MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE, and WEEZER? Where bands used the power of a melodic tone to piggyback an expressive lyric that distinguishes a band’s sound. Isn’t emo just a style or way the music comes out from a band? What I don’t get is where we started saying that post-hardcore acts lyrics kind of became a singer or lyricist confession. Wait, aren't most lyrics confessional and some way?

 

Like or dislike emo, MAKEOUT is a band that uses everything that encompasses this style of music. From the distorted tones in the guitar to the plops of the bass that could easily melt into the drum beats. I adore the longevity of Emo and MAKEOUT brings the sound that so many of us grew up either loving or hating, to new heights.  the good life is an incredible depiction of how asylum music that began in the 1980's is still going strong and that being done right by bands like MAKEOUT in 2017.

 

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Til Next Time - MRML

 

 

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36 CRAZYFISTS

 

LANTERNS

 

Spinefarm Records

 

by: Cherri Bird

 

 

 

36 Crazyfists understand this phenomenon firsthand. In fact, the Anchorage, AK quartet—Brock Lindow [vocals], Steve Holt [guitar], Mick Whitney [bass], and Kyle Baltus [drums]—find catharsis within chaos on their seventh full-length album and second for Spinefarm, the aptly titled Lanterns.

 

Lanterns represent the light we all seek,” explains Brock. “These songs are all about struggling to locate it and trying to find the way to move forward and get past what has mentally hampered you in your life. Everyone deals with depression on some level. It’s a matter of how you’re going to get out of it, put one foot in front of the other, get up, and live in this dark spot. That encompasses the umbrella of the album. I can say I’m much stronger mentally than I was two years ago when we started this.

 

DEATH EATER -  Brock takes the vocals up to blistering decibels and with a pretty grit, he blends the chorus with all parts of the song. It’s like 3 Brocks are standing in a semi-circle around you pounding your ears with a melody, screams and growls that along with the sick breaks with guitars and drums only let you take a few breaths before the next wave starts.

 

WARS TO WALK AWAY FROM - immediate love of the bass that has a tinge of distortion which makes this a tad edgy that with the lyric and Brock’s devilish echoes makes this a perfect song to sing to yourself to remind you that it’s ok to walk away; from yourself or anything else that starts wars within. Love the change up in the cut time towards the end and the last 30 seconds totally brings the song full circle.

 

BETTER TO BURN - wow! The guitar effect at the beginning surprisingly melts perfectly into the melody that starts to churn this song like a thick cake batter. And as it comes out of the bowl and into the pan you can already anticipate how awesome it’s gonna be. I love this track because it’s emotionally charged and the structure of the song takes you on trip man!! Love!!

 

DAMAGED UNDER SUN - gimme that screaming guitar riff!! Yaus! Then add in the signature plunking of the bass and drums of 36 CRAZYFISTS, and you’ve got the beginnings of a badass tune. I love the way Brock’s vocal kinda exists separately from the rest of the song in the mix - it’s pretty haunting. I dig it! Again there’s a mix of vocal styles that is pretty killer and just puts the song that much

 

SEA AND SMOKE - ahhh...a little melodic ballad beginning that slowly turns up the heat in this track. I DIG the f’ing bass line...that shit is sexy AF!! Bringing the tempo up and down gives evidence to how it is to go through a situation or experience, and I love the 3:04 mark and the heaviness of the guitars - shit! I swear, it’s a wonder that anyone makes it out alive from the life experiences that we all go through. I love the testament inferred.

 

WHERE REVENGE ENDS - I immediately take a deep breath in at the start with the acoustic guitar and the title of the song. Seriously, goosebumps - it’s cathartic to hear someone reach this point in song - jesus. The tone and unique style of Brock’s ability to identify with his struggles or struggle. It’s also lovely to know that WHERE REVENGE ENDS is, in fact attainable...

 

SLEEPSICK - mother of metal! From the jump this brings it down to a low where you can hear the growls with your ear pressed to the ground, you can hear the vibrations from a mile away! It’s paramount to listen to the marriage of the vocal and the guitar - it’s goddamn genius. This song goes beyond adapting to modern metal, it is the moniker for what metal music should encompass or should strive to be. Nonconforming, raw, heavy, thick, and have at the core, a true calling to those that are reaching for similar vibrations. This song bends those comfortable barriers all while remaining congruent with the band’s style. I love it!

 

BANDAGE FOR PROMISE - dude!! This record showcases Brock’s amazing ability to switch it up like a pinch hitter to a Tee. His lows make your undercarriage giggle. I am impressed with this track because there’s a familiar cadence that I love when bands do - they take an experience that almost caused their demise and slap it to a melody that is almost happy or upbeat. It’s the ultimate parody of life set right to music and 36Crazyfists are masters at this!

 

LAYING HANDS - full-throttle double kick on the drums flicks my Bic and just like the flame sears my cigarette, the percussion on LAYING HANDS lights up the embers and warms the wax. I can totally appreciate the bass/drum work here and killer guitar riffs and little-distorted undertones here and there give this song

 

BELOW THE GRAVES - takes me back to throwing horns up to MOTORHEAD or W.A.S.P. - I know odd reference, hun? But listen to Brock’s voice in this one...it’s pure power shooting from his throat like the fire that Blackie shot out of his motorcycle mic stand...you know what I’m talking about? I love the groove it takes on towards the end. But watch out - Kyle will kick your ass around 2:40...god that cut time segment is ballz. I would love to witness this track live!

 

OLD GOLD - y’all, I’m completely serious when I say I haven’t heard strength in a battery of songs that I have heard thus far. OLD GOLD just anchors that truth for me. It’s slow, sultry, sexy, dirty, melodic, and leaves the listener with piecing together all the parts and interpreting them to their own life experiences or just the nomadic feeling that happens through this song - it just wanders all over your insides. The breaks go down smooth and then burn like a shot of whiskey poured over cola. Massive track!!

 

DARK CORNERS - whatever guitar tone or sound or effect this is at the intro is magnified at the chorus as it joins this mantra or chant. It will stir your bowels, I assure you. Lyrically, I’m drawn to the darkness that is in Brock’s voice and then the specs of hope amidst the pain. Sheesh, so beautifully done; the tempo is like honey rolling down a spoon left in the sink, it just keeps going, leaving the end result behind, and then it just stops. I really connect and identify with the feelings I get through listening to this track. Dang Gina!

 

My honest take on LANTERNS was mindblowing. Possibly for expecting something else and getting an altogether different vibe from the whole record or maybe it’s just because 36Crazyfists have reached that point where everyone is in symbiotic harmony. Maybe because I have a desire to achieve what is done on this record and so those similarities found their place.

 

I don’t really think it matters why - it just matters. It will matter to listeners that want to hear this band at their best (IMHO). And I’m not just talking musically. I’m talking personal best. What proves that this band has longevity, a sense in knowing where to write their music will result in a strong offering and the innate ability to melt the ice that often blocks us all from seeing life for what it really is. And what it is to you my Lovelies is your personal story.. It just so happens that 36CrazyfistsLANTERNS fits with that unique story perfectly.

 

Until Next Time - MRML

THE 2017 METAL ALLIANCE TOUR

2017-09-20
OVERKILL, CROWBAR, HAVOK, BLACK FAST, INVIDIA
GAS MONKEY BAR AND GRILL
by Jerry Rutherford

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There are few tours currently making the rounds that, unintentionally or not, show just how Metal and heavy music, in general, continues to be a timeless entity.  This year’s edition of the Metal Alliance package is certainly one of those that will be bulldozing into Dallas’ Gas Monkey Bar And Grill on Wednesday, September 20.  You should be there to experience as much of it as you can.  Kicking off with the one-two punch of Invidia and Black Fast, both bands are prime goto points when it comes to talking about something new to check out.


The latter, hailing from St Louis, Missouri, is one of those type groups who’ve been sluggin’ away in vans rolling through club after club across the country cementing a name for themselves through serious determination plus some ripping live shows.  Terms Of Surrender is the title of their most recent album and the label who released it, eOne Music, made a smart move in doing so.  On top of that slab of piledriving-yet-precise thrash pummel these guys have also taken this writer’s favorite Thin Lizzy track “Thunder And Lightning” and ramped it up to tremendous effect.  Another huge Lizzy fan besides myself in Crowbar’s Kirk Windstein is out with these guys as well so here’s hoping we get a little run through on that one together in DFW.

 

Invidia, not unlike Black Fast, have also been ones to go out, cut their teeth and pay dues.  In rather short order it seems like they’ve taken their collective resume (Wikipedia it kids, ya might recognize some names), crumpled that up and tossed it away to do something that not only holds its own against their peers but also relies more on maintaining a muscular identity rather than pandering to what makes things commercially “click” these days.  With only a year or so behind them in the books it would be wise to take advantage of that dark, brooding edge so they can fit in on more tours like this.  Those bigger stages and/or radio fests obviously aren’t out of the picture for ‘em though.

Now for the two most notable names on Metal Alliance 2017 that reinforce what was stated in this whole word-barf to begin with.  Overkill and Crowbar were an integral part of defining a pair of decades when it came to shaping the landscape of sonic aggression during the 80's and 90's. As we all stand tall and still celebrate the genre more than ever before both bands have wound up releasing strings of relevant and oftentimes - for the fans and the bands themselves - revitalizing records over the years.  The true grit and the drive to remain worth a damn to followers old and new is equally embedded in their DNA when it comes to Overkill and Crowbar.  Whether it’s the vicious, east coast-fueled steamroll behind vocalist Bobby Blitz’s signature snarl or Kirk Windstein’s pensive catharsis over an onslaught of southern riff avalanche anything close to complete disappointment is totally out of the question.  Are you ready to raise your horn fists and headbang???  You better be with all this in addition to Denver Colorado’s Havok who’s also on board to break necks and remind us all that the past, present and future of the most powerful music on the planet can never be denied.

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Jerry Rutherford is an independent, freelance, wielder of words for any and everything metal. He forges his pen now for The Bird's Nest after a hiatus from the craft and the demise of heavy hitting music magazines like RIP and METAL MANIACS and a handful of other rags from the last 20 years. Follow him on Facebook by clicking here.   

 

 

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SONS OF TEXAS

 

Forged By Fortitude

 

RAZOR & TIE

 

DROP DATE: 9/22/2017

 

Reviewed by: Cherri Bird

 

 

BAND MEMBERS:

Mark Morales: Vocals

Mike Villarreal: Drums

Nick Villarreal: Bass

Jon Olivares: Guitar

Jes De Hoyos: Guitar

 

I am not gonna lie y’all. The guys in SONS OF TEXAS have an inherent sound that is like a Texas drawl - if instruments could talk... with words. With unmatched distinction, SONS OF TEXAS give the music fan exactly what they’re looking for: fast, copiously charged energy that takes you away for a bit and jump up and down, feel the tempo and the bass banging through the speakers...all of it. And it’s all present and accounted for in “FORGED WITH FORTITUDE”.

 

A unique area of Texas that prides itself on community, heritage that is unlike anywhere else in the state and the South Texas Spirit that, hands down, would love to have an itsy bit of it. SONS OF TEXAS individually and  collectively can bring it heavy, with grit, with melody; with feelings and experiences that will connect with listeners. And, that is hard to feel with a new band. SONS OF TEXAS have no problems dishing all of this out and making it their own. You’ll find within each track where the song’s energy bends a little - sometimes it’s intriguing and strange (strange is good)...and that’s the uniqueness of SONS OF TEXAS that comes through on “FORGED WITH FORTITUDE”.

 

Track by track:

 

BUY IN TO SELL OUT - MARK MORALES has this grit to his voice on this track that is gnarly where it needs to be. It’s all intertwined with the melody and then BAM!! At 1:48 into the song something flies out of it, like the best dodgeball player on the other team just hummed the ball right at you, and as it is traveling towards your face, you don’t dodge this mother f’er - you let it hit you square between the eyes. Dig that cut time and the heavy AF feel of this song! The remainder of the song just echoes the fact that SONS OF TEXAS know how and where to add or subtract in a song that has the listener literally salivating.

 

FEED THE NEED - STFU! OMG!

NICK VILLARE’s intro on the bass came through the speakers and I just  might as well as slapped me through the speaker like he just beats his bass - of course in a nonviolent way.Y’all this is like rock and roll adderall...I love how the song tracks out & in between bad ass harmonies amid heart-stopping melodies. I poop you not, once the song is over, you’ll look around like “Wait, is there a 12 step program for SONS OF TEXAS? Cuz I’m hooked…”

 

DOWN IN THE TRENCHES - nice swinging groove with a tempo that is just fast enough to make you wanna dance like Kevin Bacon did in Footloose in the warehouse scene - but you don’t...because it’s 2017 and no one knows what Footloose is. There are some killer elements that make this song tick: love the machine gun drum overlay in and out of the track, love the bass tone - totally floppy and giggly that binds the bass. I adore breaks that come in strong - gives me the goosebumps! Never tire of well played guitar solos either. Wow - the ending is awesome!

 

CAST IN STONE - can i get a gawdam?? Alright, where did this vocal come from? Look, this guy has it all - the grit, the range, clarity, growl; all of it. There’s a guitar riff that reaches out and tickles you outta nowhere - that makes it a rock song when you hear those weird riffs plugged in here and there, you know what I mean? The harmonies here are subtle and are similar to a sound of SEVENDUST. The bass, again is ballz. And I think either JON or JES’ guitar tone has gotta be one of the top 5 i’ve heard in years.. Hold the mayo - whatever happens around 3:43 seconds literally broke my spine. It goes on til the end of the song...that just made my day - this is what music is about. I love a good ending that doesn’t quite follow the chain of command, you know what I mean?

 

BENEATH THE RIVERBED - I have to bend my ear to the speaker to pick up the full gist of what this song is putting down. There is some force that only comes from Texas musicians. It is a guttural and raw and full of blues that just wanna wail a little louder, ya know what i mean? BENEATH THE RIVERBED brings it slow and sweetly, but that’s what is so alarming. Can it stay strong through the whole song? This Texas sound that I swear is dropped in by the ghost of STEVIE RAY VAUGHN, is evident in this track. It’s not just from the guitar - it’s the swagger and attitude.  The way that chunk sounding badass guitar swims around the rest of the measures.

 

EXPEDITION TO PERDITION - MARK takes the intonation really seriously in his vocal on this track. And good for him, because it’s that attention to detail that separate bands. You can literally see the dust bouncing from the inside of the speakers. Punching through with the screams and the melody - brace yourself for the end that really make you want it to be the beginning! (Just start the song over like I did…)

 

TURNIN’ THE PAGE - slowing it down at the beginning...is a great a choice because it I want to hear every part of this song. I don’t want to like it at first because I still wanted to rock after the track before...but I want to know what MARK is feeling or talking about. And at the bridge, all want to do is shout hallelujah and slam my fist full of cash down into the offering plate. I can just picture a revival of my friends and fallouts are, where SONS OF TEXAS are snake charmers and we’re all just minutes away from getting bit but the band comes in and saves us!

 

JADED  EYES - OOh I like how the cadence kinda danced at the beginning of this song. Like claymation but in a song...claymation for your ears. There is some unspoken angst and while the song keeps moving you along, the way it makes you bounce a little, it also tries to make you stop and remember something that you’ve longed to forget. I get that feeling listening to the way the guitars and background vocals float around and ignite those big memory wormholes.

 

WASP WOMAN - if this is a superhero - I don’t wanna run into her. What it is about this song that dredges you through the verse and then literally whispers to you a warning. I’m drawn to that weird ass whisper right before the chorus drops in. I like the solo combo that are in line with the tempo, like even almost. Strong elements in this song - I’d like to see it live, though.

 

FORGED BY FORTITUDE - mother of pearl - the intro will seriously kick your ass. I mean did the members say, “why not write a song that sounds like SEVENDUST, SLIPKNOT, HELLYEAH, SLAYER, JOHNNY CASH, 50 CENT & KT OSLIN (listen again and you’ll hear it, hand to God)  are all playing with us on this song”? This isn’t to say that SOT copy or try to sound like the bands I mentioned. It’s the spirit of metal/rock that is infused in their songwriting. It produces opportunity for this band that other emerging artist do not possess. The diversity of SONS OF TEXAS is dyno-mite!!

 

SLAM WITH THE LIGHTS ON - this is ear porn and I won’t have anything to do with it. Not one thing...I’ll be right back...gimme about oh, I’d say 6 - 9 minutes… I’m totally kidding! But for real - can you say hot like wasabi? Here’s another sexy song that has that air of SRV with modern pieces and that SONS OF TEXAS ability to bend a measure in almost a dark kind of way that makes me just wanna know a little more...