Games Meet Metal: A b-day show on April Fools, and not a prank in sight.

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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A b-day show on April Fools, and not a prank in sight.


The Dillinger Escape Plan, Darkest Hour, Iwrestledabearonce, and Animals As Leaders
Thursday, April 1st at The Eagle Theater 

So, my big b-day was March 30th. 34, if you're wondering. As is such with any old fart's birthday, I don't do anything great. Hell, I worked for a good portion of the day! But all was not lost, for I had tix to see DEP and a bunch of other good bands, so my time slaving away for the gods of commerce would not be wasted. No April Fools pranks either, and thank Satan for that. I woulda been one pissed off fat guy if they joked about a canceled show.




This was the first time I had ever heard or listened to Animals as Leaders, and I was very intrigued. AAL is an progressive instrumental from Washington D.C., and they have some serious chops. Lead guitarist Tosin Abasi has a playing style and guitar tone that I've never heard before. He also happens to be quite talented too. How good? Check out Tempting Time:



Thrashy, but not in the wankery type of playing. These guys know their instruments and were entertaining, even if half the crowd didn't have the slightest idea who these guys were. I didn't, and I still loved it.


Oh goodies, one of the main reasons I came! Iwrestledabearonce gets a bad rap from a lot of people as being uber-trendy towards the hardcore mosher kids. You know, the arm-flaying, roundhouse-kick throwing punks in the pit. That's a real unfair assessment, as IWABO is a tremendously fun band to watch... as long as you're not up front, that is. One whap from one of those hardcore kicks and kiss your left eyeball goodbye. Krysta Cameron's vocal performance was the star of the show, as she can hit the high notes just like on their cd in perfect pitch. Them's skills, people.

I do have one complaint though. As spaz-tastic and energy filled as their set is, the poor band barely had any room to move around. It's the "support band situation" again, as the big bands have all their gear already on stage to make a quick change, and IWABO have to make due with whatever room they have. That's fine for Animals as Leaders, as they're not exactly mobile. IWABO are HIGHLY mobile, and could use the extra space to spread their wings. I'll be seeing them on Warped this summer, so maybe the extra stage space will do them some good.

I don't know if there's anything I can even properly type about Darkest Hour at this point, as I've just seen them too many damn times. It's gotten to the point that I can guess their entire set list to within a song or two. That usually means I must invoke a "band break", as listening too much to one band's music will make me hate them intensely. Hatebreed and Rob Zombie were both at that point with me at one time. I will point out that new guitarist Mike Carrigan does a great job of doodling all the old solos with style. And now, hello two-year moratorium to help renew their interest!

You know what does it for me? Lead vocalists doing a belly flop into the crowd from atop a speaker cabinet. And still singing. This was probably just another performance for Greg Puciato, but it's an experience for all the DEP fans. The band played quite a bit of new stuff off of Option Paralysis, which came off so damn good, that it made my cash-starved ass run out and buy a copy the next day. Any band that's so good that they'll make you wanna go buy a physical cd of theirs is something to really brag about.

In the end, another Slaytanic show, but I so wanna see IWABO on a big stage. I say they can give DEP a run for the money in the energy department. I just don't think Krysta will be doing belly flops anytime soon.

Select Tweets from the show:

First time in the Eagle Theater. Never been in a venue with a downhill slope.

Fuck the bars! Give me a venue with an open deli.

Animals as Leaders have an American Gojira vibe and that's a good thing.

IWABO's singer does good at being geeky hot.

Finally! First breakdown of the night. Thought I was at a rap show for a sec there.

You don't really need to call a pit for Darkest Hour. That shit just kind of happens.

Greg Puciato could get a second job as Spiderman, as he just loves jumping and climbing on everything.

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