@ The Rock Tucson, AZ
As We Watch Them Fall
Autonomy (last minute cancellation)
Unlike most shows this one was slated to start at five PM, but of course this wasn’t like most shows for this was a fest and in that regard I guess…different!?!
OK, So, that meant poor bastard Cult had to shuffle around his whole day’s schedule in order to get to the venue (The Rock) at a decent hour. However, all was not lost as he also managed to entice a companion who had miraculously also managed to shift his schedule around (at the last minute mind you!) to not only accompany but ‘drive’ (thanx again for being my chauffeur Drew!).
Something was amiss though, it was unnaturally quiet. I was soon to discover that we had missed an act, much later finding out it was only the ‘opener’ to my surprise, it was to be expected really as seriously what show starts at five (again with this ‘fest’ argument, I hear ya!).
It was unfortunate to have missed Waysted Youth an act ironically I had looked forward to enjoying again, previously having experienced for a first time (a few weeks prior) at Club XS (also in Tucson).
Next up were an act I had yet to experience and an act whose diverse lineup was pleasing to witness. And by diverse I mean young, energetic and also “diverse” … have I mentioned the vocalist is a female?
Being the silly monkey I am I took time to seek out the vocalist and for some reason asked her how to spell ‘K-a-l-i-p-h-a-t-e’ for I wasn’t sure how and it’s always fun to see a talented young beauty wrinkle her face in concentration. But I wasn’t taking notes (insert winky face here). I recommended some acts in a similar vein making sure to mention the very talented Candice and (early era) Eths (quite a mean feat and something that will rarely happen for obvious reasons as I’m English and they’re French!).
I had to giggle as my companion pointed out the drum set-up - do they know their cymbal’s broken?
I’ll be keeping an eye on this act as they continue to gain confidence and find their stylistic niche.
Next up was an act closer to my own age.
Within the same set they also played a new track – Popsicles in the Basement (featured on a limited compilation release) and a topical track concerning both the DNC and RNC primary debacles (…fuck you DNC, fuck you RNC. Democrats and Republicans for overseas readers!). Other track titles included Broken Can o’ Biscuits (think ‘People of Walmart’ and only then might you be close), Velosagina (‘vagina dentate’ or am I miles off here? In any case a very intriguing Dinosaur) and Moose Knuckle Knockout all of which give one a clear idea of where it is these chaps are stylistically (very talented and knowledgeable about the scene - roots and all!) and mentally - in much the same place as me I’d like to believe apart from the musical talent of course!
Following several laps of the venue (is there anyone here I wish to talk to who may chose to purchase me a beverage) I returned just in time to witness the stage as it became choked with an entourage of enthusiastic youngsters.
If you have yet to experience Sorrows Ruin, I’d suggest you seek them out. This was only the second time I’ve seen them and for some reason they’re growing on me like an incurable fungus (of the fuzzy, cutesy variety!) it’s curiously difficult not to like them in fact. Theirs is an apocalyptic, heavy metal/hybrid style boasting prominent multi-faceted, wholly impressive vocals, catchy melodies and powerful riffs. The stage presence is a strong pull as IBN Terra sports a rapier wit, an altogether humble aura and takes pride in allowing the audience (many who deem themselves part of a ‘ruin nation’) to become a huge part of the show itself. Ironic then that it was a few minutes previous that the ‘token shirtless guy’ made an appearance in the mosh pit, one that was seemed friendlier and more inviting than most if truth be told.
Join the ‘Ruin Nation’ (I promise they will grow on you like they have on me) and do whatever you can to take in a Sorrows Ruin show it might put you also in mind of Mushroomhead or Motograter and an apocalyptic Mad Max type vibe but they are unique and you won’t be disappointed!
As an aside Sorrows Ruin puts me in mind, in part, of a little known British band by name of Decimator (on Neat Records) back in 89’ who sported a similar style but admittedly more of a thrash edge.
Strange then that the show had a Ruinfest moniker when the headliner was in fact…
Maverick is the backbone of the band, a guitarist who enthralls with both his presence and talent. This was to be the unveiling of a new drummer and vocalist to complete the line-up-show.
Sam Bess is the new drummer all the way from Texas, Maverick took a moment that he was so new to the area that he’d had yet to make any new friends. He also introduced Alex Parra as the (new) vocalist (by placing the mic in a cage and having him retrieve it). Both are great additions to an act that truly shines on stage and in the limelight. It didn’t take me long at all to notice that Alex has somewhat of a Randy Blythe (Lamb of God) edge to his vocal style, a style that fits the band’s overall sound excellently, adding yet another layer to their already remarkable repertoire. This is an act I will be watching very carefully I have no doubts that within no time whatsoever they will wowing audiences outside of city and state limits.
That was about it, a fantastic show (ok – ‘fest’) but for clean-up, an activity I didn’t stick around for though I had plans to be returning soon to help mess the venue up again of that you have my word.