Another year gone by and another Mike D of Rock Karma Promotions birthday classic show. This years show took place at Simon’s 677 in Providence, RI on Mike’s actual B-Day! This year Mike decided to do things a little different and book a show featuring bands that are mostly on the thrash side of metal, including a little side project he has been working on along with Mechanical Process member Ricky Rick, called Blood Of My Enemy. The rest of the bill was Your Pain is Endearing, Sonic Pulse, Death Rattle & Give Zombies The Vote. With such a solid line up we were expecting a full house, so it was a bit disappointing to see such a weak turnout for a guy who gives so much of himself to local music. I’m not pointing fingers or calling anybody out, but to be honest, for a metal scene that likes to call itself a family and stresses how everybody sticks together, to not come out and support Mike and Rock Karma is kind of shitty.
If you weren’t there, check out the bands and have a look at the pics. Blood Of My Enemy should be playing a few select dates this summer around New England and Death Rattle along with GZTV (all amazing bands BTW) will be at KC’s Tap on May 25th for Pete Rock’s birthday show along with a bunch of other kick ass local bands. Maybe some of you can get your butts out for that?!
Train Of Thought and Vegas Automaticmade their return to the stage this past Friday 3/29 at Simon’s 677 in Providence, RI, along with our pals in Rope, Verscythe, A Truth Divides & Slam One Down (from New York) were also on the Rock Karma Promotions show. Originally the plan was to just go for a bit, drop off some DVD’s we made for Mike Dawson of Rope, have a couple beers and be home by midnight. We were bummed to miss Train Of Thought, but the alarm clock for work goes off too early to be staying out much past midnight. Well we arrived at the club just as Rope was finishing up their set, only to find out that Slam One Down was not going to make it due to a late start and traffic from NYC. While that bummed us, because we were looking forward to checking them out, it also meant an earlier night and that we would be able to catch Train Of Thought! Wouldn’t you know it, as ToT was setting up to go on stage, who pulls up to the venue? Yep, the guys in Slam One Down made it…better late than never! But now they had to headline and we were going to have to stick around ’till the end.
As we were getting ready to leave for the show, Lisa decided that she felt like shooting some video. Since she chose to do that, I decided not to take many photos. To make up for it, we are including some shots taken by our pal Dan Donovan. It was nice just to chill out and listen to the music, although I did grab the video camera for a couple of songs.
As we said before, we missed most of Rope’s set, so no videos of them this time. Verscythe was next and as we have said before, this is a must see local band. I don’t care what type of rock or metal you are into, we think you will like what these guys have to offer. Check out the videos and judge for yourself.
Next up was a new band for us, called A Truth Divides. We had heard of them, but had never heard them play before. For some reason I thought they were a post hardcore screamo type band with a chick singer, so it was a pleasant surprise to find them to be a straight up alt/pop band whose vocalist Christina Marie, can really sing. Ha Ha, teach me to make assumptions.
Vegas Automatic is another band that hasn’t played since sometime last year after the departure of their bass player and drummer. It was cool to see them back on stage doing their thing. I’m not sure if the drummer was a permanent replacement or not, but I know they “borrowed” Stew from Mechanical Process to fill in on bass temporarily and he did a bang up job.
It had been around a year since the last Train Of Thoughtshow, so we kind of figured that they had finally called it quits. Lo and behold this was not the case and our boys are back stronger than ever and are in the process of mixing their newest CD as we speak. Keep an eye out for that later on this summer. It was great to see them back in action and we are happy to report that with all the time off and all the booze drank before hitting the stage and while onstage, Train Of Thought still sounds tight as hell. It was an awesome set of new stuff mixed with old and even some very old songs. Keep an eye out for these guys this summer because Train Of Thought is seriously one of the best bands that Rhode Island has and you won’t be sorry you went to one of their shows.
Slam One Downmade the drive all the way from New York City to play for us and goddammit they were gonna play! Even if it meant going on after midnight and playing to only a handful of diehards. Doesn’t matter, these guys came to party and party they did. Funnel shots were the order of the night before, during and after their set. Did we say these guys liked to party?! Honestly though, the guys in Slam One Down were fantastic! They played a bunch of originals along with a few covers, including Becoming by Pantera and even some Beastie Boys! We hope to see them make the trip up here again, maybe this time arriving early enough to party before hand. This ain’t NYC guys, they kick us out of the bars at 1 am in Providence!!
After a particularly shitty end to a crappy week, it was nice to check out the Facebook events page and notice that our old pals Tester were in town on Saturday night. As anybody who has been to one can tell you, there is no way to be feeling down at a Tester show. With that in mind, we packed ourselves into the car and headed out to McNeil’s Tavern in North Providence, RI for what promised to be a night of forgetting about the troubles at hand.
We arrived just in time to catch our buddy Jimmy Brodeur belting out a couple of acoustic tunes. Jimmy’s sons hip hop group USOG opened the night up, but unfortunately we missed their set. Jimmy kicks ass both as a musician and as a human being and it was great to hang out with him again.
Age of End is a metal band out of Haverhill, MA that has been on our want to see list for a while now. The high energy set was well worth the wait. We look forward to catching Age Of End again next time they make the trip down these parts.
Derailer is another Haverhill band out on this weekend tour with AoE & Tester. We had never heard of these guys before and are happy to say that they didn’t suck at all. Derailer did a nice job mixing in some catchy as hell originals with a few covers included, a rippin’ cover of Strutter that you know the Tester boys had to jump on stage and help out with.
Tester closed out the night in well alcohol lubricated style and that reminded us as to why they are truly our favorite band on the local scene right now. Once again Tester had Ryan (aka Judge Dreads) filling in on bass after a freak booze induced St Paddy’s Day accident left regular bassist Brett unable to perform. As usual Ryan slid right into the role as if it was his regular gig. Note to bands – if you ever need a fill in bass player, hit this guy up, as you won’t regret it. The whole set was raucous and rowdy and we even saw a clown up on stage wildly beating the drums with Chucky at one point. The night closed out with a full booze soaked crowd sing along of Maybe Baby.