ARCHSPIRE, AUROCH, GROSS MISCONDUCT & EXCRUCIATING PAIN – 4th Annual Brutalfest Saturday May 12th @ The Astoria

First I must apologize for writing this review over a month later. Many things have come up, and as a result, our projects have been put on hold.

The 4th annual Brutalfest was held at the Astoria, which is located in the Vancouver downtown eastside. The outside of the venue can be sketchy at times due to people asking for money and other services and favors, but once inside, Continue reading

Napalm Death / Golers / Zuckuss / Gross Misconduct @ The Rickshaw – Thursday, October 27, 2011

How fucking lucky I was to get half the day off from work to be able to attend this! And recently, I read in the Vancouver Sun that the Rickshaw has had improvements made to it, and that one of these was a better sound system. I immediately noticed the white sound panels in both the upper left and right corners above the stage.

We opened with Gross Misconduct. Crazy drummer John Kurucz assaulted the kit with complex rhythmic beats and fills. David London, frontman, belted out a mixture of thrash and death metal vocals. Check out his other band Sinned for a more brutal death/grind vocal approach. Jesse Brint, as usual, shredded on his Jackson axe, demonstrating his agility on the fretboard by playing melodically based lead work complete with tapping, artificial harmonics, and blistering runs. Gross Misconduct has a strong focus on song development, in particular with their use of fast blast beat tempos alternating with slow half-time sections, even clean guitars, as well as their strong sense of guitar harmonies. At times, I had trouble hearing David’s guitar leads; they were buried in the mix. I look forward to Gross Misconduct’s second CD release show on November 11 at the media Club.

Next we had Zuckuss, local death/grindcore act. Boss Jass drummed ridiculously fast, and no it was NOT triggered, at least I don’t think. Someone who is a drummer please clarify with me, or maybe I will ask Jass himself! Their bassist played some fast moving bass lines too. More lead guitar would have been appreciated, but that is not usually something that is necessary for grind anyway. I had trouble hearing the main vocals at times. I think the setup might have been having sound problems again.

The third band was Golers, local blend of thrash/punk/hardcore; this is a band that could fit in easily at either a punk show or a metal show. Charlie is able to pull off the high punk/hardcore vocals just as well as his lower thrash/death vocals. I like how the other band members occasionally did backup vocals, adding further emphasis. We interviewed Golers back in April, and they mentioned that they really enjoy crossover/thrash and “inbreeding” different types of metal.

Headliners Napalm Death took the stage, and man was I stoked to see them for my first time! There was a really bad audio glitch though–the bass frequencies were WAY too loud, in both the drums and the bass. This made it difficult to hear the guitars, and even the bass line was too boomy to hear its notes. None of the other bands on the bill had this much of a problem with their bass. Napalm Death’s bass was so loud and boomy that I actually had to move back, even though I normally prefer to be as close to the stage as possible. Barney’s vocals were sometimes hard to hear too. Despite the sound problems, Napalm Death still put on a decent show and played a mixture of old and new songs, and they even played stuff off their first two albums. I really hope they come back to Vancouver soon, hopefully with better sound.