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Concert Review: Amon Amarth, Skeletonwitch & Sabaton at the Webster Theater in Hartford, CT

October 20, 2014 by  
Filed under Concert Reviews, Daily Music News

photo04 300x199 Concert Review: Amon Amarth, Skeletonwitch & Sabaton at the Webster Theater in Hartford, CTAmon Amarth, Skeletonwitch & Sabaton
October 15, 2014

Webster Theater – Hartford, CT

Reviewed by: B. Cross

Thunderous heavy metal reigns supreme when Amon Amarth comes calling. Despite the unseasonably warm and humid weather, there was a massive turnout when the venerated band and friends hit the Webster Theater in Hartford, CT.

Wasting no time, openers Skeletonwitch unleashed the serpents with a multi-pronged extreme metal blend. With crowdpleasers like “Beyond the Permafrost” and “Stand, Fight, and Die” taking their place alongside newer material like “Burned from Bone,” the intensity didn’t let up for a second. Dual guitar assaults backed by a pummeling bassline and tight drum work, not to mention Chance Garnette’s high-energy vocals, set the tone for the entire evening. Read more

Concert Review & Photos: Theory of a Deadman at House of Blues in Boston, Mass.

October 14, 2014 by  
Filed under Concert Reviews, Daily Music News

BN6V3291 200x300 Concert Review & Photos: Theory of a Deadman at House of Blues in Boston, Mass.Theory of a Deadman
October 7, 2014
House of Blues – Boston, MA
Words &
Photos by:  Jeff Palmucci

I had a “bad girlfriend” once. It’s not as fun as Tyler Connolly makes it sound in their 2008 hit of the same name. They played it to close off their show last Tuesday at the House of Blues in Boston. It reminded me why I like of lot of their stuff. They just don’t seem to give a crap if some people get offended at their lyrics, and that lets them explore less politically correct themes. Read more

Concert Review & Photo Gallery: Volbeat at Casino Ballroom in Hampton Beach, NH

BN6V0186 M Concert Review & Photo Gallery: Volbeat at Casino Ballroom in Hampton Beach, NH

Volbeat
May 9, 2014
Casino Ballroom – Hampton Beach, NH
Photos by:  Jeff Palmucci

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Volbeat played the Casino Ballroom last week and I was there to photograph the show. The first time I met these guys was at Rocklahoma 2012 and they seemed to be great  guys. I remember ex-guitarist Hank Shermann geeking out over my brand new shiny Canon 5D3 camera as I was setting up for the video and thinking: “wow, a major rock star can be a camera nerd just like me.”

Hank is no longer with the band, replaced by ex-Anthrax guitarist Rob Caggiano simultaneously with the new album Outlaw Gentlemen and Shady Ladies. Caggiano can definitely pull off some awesome guitar, and is a great showman on stage. While in the photo pit, I noticed a kid about 10 or 11 standing in the front row against the rail. Caggiano came over and riffed to the kid, probably giving him the thrill of his life. Of course, I planted myself nearby so I could catch the action also. Make sure you check out the photo gallery below.

Although Volbeat is a Danish band, they come across as hard rock with a southern, rockabilly influence. They highlighted a bit of this influence during the show with a rendition of Johnny Cash’s Ring of Fire, and of course, in the new album with its western themes. If you haven’t heard Volbeat before and would like to give them a try, two of my favorite tracks off of Outlaw are Dead but Rising and The Hangman’s Body Count.

This is the second time I’ve photographed these guys in as many weeks, making the trip to Rockville at the end of April and getting a chance to see them there also. I suspect I’m a little obsessed. My family may be getting sick of me listening to them in the car. My wife definitely gives me a dirty look every time the “counting all the assholes in the room” lyric comes around. Ah well, worth it.

Set List:

  • Doc Holiday
  • Hallelujah Goat
  • Boa
  • Lola Montez
  • Sad Man’s Tongue
  • Heaven Nor Hell
  • Warrior
  • 16 Dollars
  • Dead But Rising
  • Fallen
  • Ecotone
  • Evelyn (featuring Trivium)
  • Radio Girl
  • Maybellene
  • Still Counting
  • Pool of Booze
  • Hangman’s Body Count
  • Mirror

Volbeat Photo Gallery:

 

Concert Review: Red Dragon Cartel at Revolution in Amityville, NY

reddragoncartel 9424 232x300 Concert Review: Red Dragon Cartel at Revolution in Amityville, NYRed Dragon Cartel
April 4
, 2014
Revolution – Amityville, NY
Reviewed
 by:  Antonio Marino Jr.

Since Badlands’ 1991 release, Voodoo Highway, Jake E. Lee has led an incredibly low-profile musical existence.  He has resurfaced from time to time with a few solo releases and a very short club tour with the short lived band Wicked Alliance, but none of his projects seem to take root and before too long he would be back living under the radar. Read more

Concert Review: Flogging Molly at the House of Blues in Boston, MA

BN6V1868 M Concert Review: Flogging Molly at the House of Blues in Boston, MAFlogging Molly
February 26, 2014
House of Blues – Boston, MA
Reviewed by: Jeff Palmucci

The only reason there’s peace in Ireland is because we’re all over here!” – Dave King at the House of Blues, Boston

Flogging Molly played the House of Blues Boston last Wednesday to a packed house. Boston is a very Irish town and provided a lively audience for the Celtic punk band. For those of you unfamiliar with Flogging Molly: when I say Celtic punk, I don’t mean they are a punk band that simply started in Ireland. They are just as much Irish folk as anything else. To give you an idea of the atmosphere: picture a night at the Black Rose with an incredibly good and hard rocking band. Now, pack in 2400 people and add a mosh pit.

This is the 10th year of Flogging Molly’s Green 17 Tour. Each year, they take to the road around St. Patrick’s Day to support Boston’s hardest drinking holiday (no, New Year’s Eve isn’t close). Other bands do well to throw picks and drumsticks to the crowd. These guys throw cans of Guinness (really). No contest what I’d rather be catching.

I myself have had plenty of great St. Patrick’s days in Boston. After graduation, I moved in to a house in Southie (Boston’s Irish district) with 4 of my college buddies1 and one dog. When I say it was a dog, I’m being charitable. I doubt that Dreyfus had two brain cells to rub together. Incredibly stupid, and on top of that, my housemate Russ actively trained him to hump people’s legs. The house was right on the parade route, so we always had a huge St Patrick’s Day party. During these parties, we used food coloring to dye the dog green. With all the attention people lavished on Dreyfus, he had to be the happiest green dog in the world. No one even complained very much about the leg humping.2

Covering Irish bands like Flogging Molly  brings me back to these wild parties. In addition to the standard rock instruments, this largish 7 piece band has people manning the accordion, flute, violin, mandolin, and banjo. These instruments help give the band their folk sound. For example, listen to Drunken Lullabies for great banjo and violin, and Devil’s Dance Floor features a flute and accordion riffing off of each other.

The band played “Rise Up” as a tribute to folk singer / activist Pete Seegar who passed away this January. Seegar, always one to stand up for what he thought was right, was blacklisted and indicted for contempt of Congress during the McCarthy era. Check out his Wikipedia entry, it is an interesting read. Also credited with popularizing the banjo as an American folk instrument, Seeger got a dedication stenciled on the band’s banjo.

Bridget Regan the band’s flautist and violinist is not only an incredible musician, but also married the front man Dave King. I guess the family that tours together stays together. However, while combing through the night’s photos, I came across this spousal moment. Hilarious. Her face is just shouting, “Back off honey, I’m busy.”

Flogging Molly puts on a great show. For the last decade, they’ve been getting people in the St. Patrick’s Day spirit with the Green 17 Tour. So go see them and have a happy St. Patty’s day. Just keep a wary eye on the green dog.


1 Five if you count Eugene, who crashed for a while for free on the back screened in porch in a kind of semi-homeless state.

2 After we moved out of the house, we saddled Eugene and Ed’s parents with Dreyfus. I’d just like to apologize to Mrs. Sweeney for any “training” issues they may have had, and would like to point out that it was all Russ’ fault.

Set list:

  • Wailing Wall
  • Paddy’s Lament
  • Every Dog
  • Revolution
  • Whistles the Wind
  • Drunken Lullabies
  • Tenement Square
  • Saints and Sinners
  • Requiem for a Dying Song
  • Present State of Grace
  • Son Neve Shines
  • Us of Lesser Gods
  • Tobacco Island
  • Rare Old Times
  • Devil’s Dance Floor
  • Likes of You
  • Swagger
  • Float
  • Rise Up
  • Salty Dog
  • What’s Left of the Flag
  • Seven Deadly Sins
  • World Alive

Check out our photo gallery from the Flogging Molly show:

Concert Review: Stephen Pearcy and Mass at Club Rain Malden, Mass.

IMG 6208 copy M 240x300 Concert Review: Stephen Pearcy and Mass at Club Rain Malden, Mass. Stephen Pearcy and MASS
January 17, 2014
Club Rain
Malden, Mass.
Reviewed by: Roger Scales

Well it’s great to see that even though RATT is hard at work on a new album for 2014 vocalist and sometimes solo artist Stephen Pearcy still feels like hitting the road (in the Northeast no less) in January for a round of dates performing with his RATT Bastards solo band.

Add into the mix local rock legends MASS as an opener (also soon to start work on a new record) and this has the potential to be a night of power rock with an old school flavor.  That’s really what this show felt like to me.  Stepping back in time for sure and kudos to Club Rain for making it feel like an 80’s rock show with spacious new amenities, great lighting and a world class sound system.  Anyone who remembers Narcissus in Kenmore Square or The Channel recalls that Boston did have great clubs at one time.  Let’s hope the management at Rain keeps booking national acts and the task of bringing in the crowds will take care of itself. Read more

Build-Your-Own-Festival: Cate Le Bon at Middle East Upstairs & Mother Falcon at Great Scott

January 20, 2014 by  
Filed under Concert Reviews, Daily Music News

photo Build Your Own Festival: Cate Le Bon at Middle East Upstairs & Mother Falcon at Great ScottBuild-Your-Own-Festival
Cate Le Bon @ Middle East Upstairs
and
Mother Falcon @ Great Scott
January 18, 2014

Reviewed By: Dorise Gruber

What happens when two bands you can’t miss are both playing the same night?  Well, if the set-time stars align in just the right way, you may be able to turn an ordinary concert experience into a Build-Your-Own-Festival, which is precisely what I did this weekend with the sultry Cate Le Bon playing an early show at the Middle East Upstairs, and the dynamic gaggle that is Mother Falcon headlining a late show at Great Scott. Read more

The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review

web The 2013 Boston Music Awards In ReviewTrending at the 2013 Boston Music Awards:

Hating on the BMAs
Local booker Richard Bouchard gave a tongue-in-cheek welcome to Sunday night’s BMAs, declaring it “the least-complained about event of the year!”  With enormous bands like Aerosmith, Dropkick Murphys, and Amanda Palmer nominated alongside the Boston little guys, voting almost posed an ethical dilemma – do you vote for Walmart or the Mom & Pop shop?  Why are these artists even in the same category?  When they announced the nominees and ran through the artists up for awards, nobody cheered for Aerosmith but folks went bananas for Bad Rabbits.  Amanda Palmer’s name even warranted a “Boooooooo” that echoed throughout multiple floors at the Liberty Hotel.  Eddie Japan frontman David Santos said at the beginning of his set that they were up against Aerosmith and the Dropkick Murphys for Best Live Artist, “so if you voted 6 million times we might have a shot.”  Happily, it seems the voting community was ultimately more interested in the little guy, too – Eddie Japan went home with the win.

Supporting Boston Music
Certainly if a band like Bad Rabbits can trounce Amanda Palmer/Dropkick Murphys and Eddie Japan can dethrone Aerosmith, it was a relieving gauge of where Boston stands with its musical priorities.  The evening’s best example of Boston Pride existed with the Tuesday Night Recording Club, a blog whose mission is to get local bands together to cover predominantly rock records.  It includes Brian Charles, producer extraordinaire, Aaron Perrino, lead singer of the Sheila Divine, Annie Hoffman, bassist for the Field Effect, and local musicians Davina Yannetty & Kenji Ross on Keys/Vocals and Drums, respectively.  For the BMAs, though, this band busted out all of the local stops, covering songs by numerous bands with Boston roots, and featured some big-name locals on individual songs – they opened with a Sheila Divine cover of “Hum,” but followed with songs by The Cars, Dinosaur Jr., The Pixies, Bobby Brown, and more, featuring guest leads by Doug Orey from the Field Effect, Chris Keene from Mean Creek, Sidewalk Driver’s Tad McKitterick dressed like a Pimp-style Santa Claus during “My Prerogative,” BMA producer Jake Brennan even guest-led for a stint, and they closed with Buffalo Tom’s Bill Janovitz and Fuzzy’s Chris Toppin for a Scruffy the Cat cover, honoring the recently deceased Charlie Chesterman (the posthumous winner of the evening’s “Unsung Heroes” award).  Ultimately, the evening was truly a success for the locals, and TNRC’s set was the highlight of the night.

Covers
Besides the Tuesday Night Record Club, nothing like funky solo guitar virtuoso Shun Ng busting out covers of MJ and Stevie Wonder.  I’ll get to My Dick in a minute.

Backup Singers/Pinup-girl Hair/Matching Outfits
Or some combination therein, regardless of musical genre.  New personal goal: own one part of an identical dress set.  Happy to take those bowtie dresses off your hands, TNRC ladies…

Orchestra and Band instruments
Between Big D & The Kids Table, Moe Pope & Quills, Barrence Whitfield, and 11-piece Women of the World, I counted 1 Trombone, 2 Saxophones, 2 Violins, and a Flute.  Women of the World also rocked a Euphonium, which may not be an orchestra/band instrument, but dammit, I’m counting that shit anyways.

DJs/Samplers
About a third of the night’s acts featured some sort of live DJ as a part of their act – props to Soulelujah who closed the night spinning actual vinyl.

Getting off the stage and into the crowd
Because the stage just couldn’t hold the awesome.  Or maybe because they got confused about what constituted the stage.

Terrible Lighting
But seriously – why was the lighting so bad?  Nearly all of the acts in the Esplanade Room were playing in a weird shadow that made it feel like you were in some sort of bizarre attic lair.  Pro tip: a better lighting rig, and for god’s sake an air conditioner, would do wonders for this room.

Awkward Artist/Stage Match-ups
The labyrinth that is The Liberty Hotel makes it a little difficult to get up to the Esplanade room, so if they moved some of the bigger tickets to the downstairs it would’ve been less difficult to barrel through the Function Room.  Considering Bearstronaut and Bad Rabbits are big enough to have played Boston Calling and won awards this year, Bearstronaut was beyond packed in the tiny Esplanade Room while Barrence Whitfield’s set looked a little lonely on the second floor, and it was impossible to permeate the Bad Rabbits dance party to get around from My Dick to Potty Mouth and Coyote Kolb.  Also – My Dick, despite being rather silly, should’ve definitely been in the Liberty Ballroom – everybody wanted a piece of My Dick, and its audience was massive.

My Dick
A band who does glorified karaoke by replacing every other word of famous songs with “my dick” never stops being funny.  For the curious, their set included such classics as “My Dick” instead of “My Girl,” “Dancing in My Dick” instead of “Dancing in the Dark,” “Everybody Have Dick Tonight” instead of “Everybody Have Fun Tonight,” “Dicks of Gold” instead of “Fields of Gold” (personally I’d hoped for Fields of Dick instead, but they did at least sing about Dicks of Barley), my favorite – “Fast Dick” instead of Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car” (best line: My dick in a market as a checkout girl), and for our International friends, “Mi Pinga” instead of “La Bamba.”  I’m really glad I got to see My Dick in the spotlight, since My Dick was quite the spectacle.  It’s pretty easy to laugh at My Dick, and maybe My Dick’s performance was just mediocre, but I could’ve easily spent even more time with My Dick.  Honestly?  The whole room was pretty amped about My Dick too, chanting for My Dick to keep going, which in turn made My Dick go at it even harder, even though by the end My Dick was pretty hot and sweaty.  All in all, My Dick had a blast, and so did everyone who got to experience My Dick in action.  My Dick definitely gained a few fans after its performance, and I’m excited to spread the gospel of My Dick to the Boston music community.

Music Drives Us
Arguably the biggest winner from the night was for Music Drives Us, a local music non-profit that supplies grants for music programs for those in need.  All proceeds from the event go toward the Music Drives Us Foundation, and while I have yet to see how much was raised for this year, last year they donated a walloping $65,000 to the charity.  For all of the complaining people do about this event, ultimately the BMAs are fueling the local music scene with their charity work, and are helping the scene stay alive for generations to come.  Now quit whining and go vote for Eddie Japan again – it’ll take a bit to reach 6 million votes by 2014.

Boston Music Awards 2013 Winners:
New Artist of the Year: Speedy Ortiz
Song of the Year: Field Effect “Ogunquit Me”
Live Artist of the Year: Eddie Japan
Video of the Year: Karmin “Acapella”
Male Vocalist of the Year: Ward Hayden
Female Vocalist of the Year: Amy Renee Heidemann
Americana Artist of the Year: Girls Guns & Glory
Blues Artist of the Year: Barrett Anderson
Electronic Artist of the Year: Bearstronaut
DJ Artist of the Year: Frank White
Folk Artist of the Year: Aofie O’Donovan
International Artist of the Year: Los Rumberos de Boston
Jazz Artist of the Year: Lake Street Dive
Unsung Hero Award: Charlie Chesterman
Metal/Hardcore Artist of the Year: Converge
Gospel/Inspirational Artist of the Year: Kendall Ranseur
Pop/R&B Artist of the Year: Bad Rabbits
Singer/Songwriter of the Year: Lori McKenna
Producer of the Year: Clinton Sparks
Hip/Hop Artist of the Year: Moe Pope & Rain
Best Music Blog: Vanyaland
Best Live Music Venue: The Sinclair
Best Dance Night: Soulelujah
Best Live Ongoing Residency: Session Americana @ Lizard Lounge
Best Boston Artist Who Doesn’t Live in Boston: Lady Lamb the Beekeeper
Album/EP of the Year: Kingsley Flood: Battles
Rock Artist of the Year: Deer Tick
Artist of the Year: Bad Rabbits
Photos:
 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
image The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review
image2 The 2013 Boston Music Awards In Review

Concert Review: Lucius at The Sinclair in Cambridge, MA

December 9, 2013 by  
Filed under Concert Reviews, Daily Music News

home image Concert Review: Lucius at The Sinclair in Cambridge, MALucius
December 5, 2013
The Sinclair
Cambridge, MA

Reviewed by: Dorise Gruber

 

With blue lights blazing on a slick-suited trio of men, one armed with a partial standing drum kit, one with guitar and pedal board, and one with both, they start with a few echoing minor chords and crisp marching snare before the Lucius ladies traipse onto stage.  Holly Laessig and Jess Wolfe don identical blonde-banged-bobs, Cleopatra eye makeup, twin plaid schoolgirl rompers, and mirrored dance moves.  Not actually related, they look like new-age indie fembots, presuming new-age fembots come equipped with more clothes, more class, more talent, and fewer bionic nipple barrel guns. Read more

Concert Review: Slayer, Gojira & 4ARM at the Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford, CT

December 2, 2013 by  
Filed under Concert Reviews, Daily Music News

IMG 4685 Concert Review: Slayer, Gojira & 4ARM at the Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford, CTSlayer, Gojira & 4ARM
November 26, 2013
Oakdale Theatre
Wallingford, CT


Reviewed by: Brian Cross
Photos by: Diana Guay

The international brotherhood of metal was on full display once again as bands spanning three continents joined forces to bring an onslaught of extreme music to a rabid crowd. Read more

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