Thursday, February 18, 2010

Algoma Hope4Haiti Preview, Last Month's Poll Results, & This Month's Poll!

It's new poll day! But before that, something way more important, as there's a major concert event taking place tomorrow night and Saturday night! So here's everything I know and you need to know about what's going on this weekend! (There IS a metal-related cancellation, but we'll get to that when we come to the Saturday portion.)

As you likely are well aware, a devastating earthquake hit Haiti on January 12th. Thousands have died and many many more are injured or without a home. In response to this, SooToday's Donna Hopper and The Sault Youth Association are teaming up to organize a huge concert event this weekend to raise funds for The Canadian Red Cross to donate to Haiti relief funds. Called "Algoma Hope4Haiti", it's unique as concert events go in that it's not all in one place, like at 2008's Rock 2 Roll skatepark fundraiser at The Canadian Nightclub, for example. This event will be held simultaneously at 8 different local bars (7 of which are downtown) Saturday night, with a handful also holding concerts tomorrow night as well. Two (maybe three) of these venues will be hosting metal/hard rock bands on Saturday, but here's what to expect on Friday! (All my band/venue info comes from the official Facebook event page, unless otherwise stated)

Remember to click on all band names to check out their material and get more information!

Firstly, at LopLops Lounge, local indie band Kalle Mattson (featuring former Gates of Winter drummer Jimmie Chiverelli) will be playing there tomorrow night with special guest artists Kathy O'Neill and Craig West. If you like indie music, this will be a perfect spot for you to hit! Meanwhile, Foggy Notions will get rocked not by the previously announced DJs, but by these bands: local indie rockers Nebraska Arms (featuring two ex-members of Renderware), and solo artist Brad Example, who you'll likely recognize from Rock of Ages, and most notably, as the bassist for The Inner City Surfers! My source for the updated info at Foggy's is at the official event page, confirm your attendance there! Finally, if I'm not mistaken, local classic rock band That's Chester (featuring Greg Simpson from Stiffler's Mom & Sin Stereo) will be covering your favourite rock hits (and maybe some metal tracks) at The Rockstar Bar that night as well! Just in case you're not sure, tickets for the Saturday shows are good for Friday, so you don't need to buy two tickets. And despite what the poster for Hope4Haiti says, I don't believe The Algonquin Pub has bands on both nights.

Then on Saturday, there's shows at all eight venues, and we'll start first by mentioning a cancellation: I just got word from Sense of Truth drummer Ryan Haryett that they will NOT be playing at Coch's Corner on Saturday. They were scheduled to be playing there that night, but are off due to scheduling conflicts. To the best of my knowledge, The Fury are still playing that night, but a replacement for Sense of Truth hasn't been announced yet. If and when I hear an update on the replacement band, you'll find it here! Well, while we're on the subject of The Fury, you'll likely find them very unique, what with the no guitars and two bassists and all. Very solid band, you'll recognize ex-members of Out Of The Mouth of Babes and DOTH in their lineup! Oh, and remember, if you wanna see Sense of Truth, head to The Canadian on February 26th!

But for the metalhead in us all, one show will deliver all the goods! At Nite-Life Dance & Comedy Club, local death/thrash metal band Bring The Fallen will make their debut at the former Other Place on Saturday night! This will be their first concert since their short notice set at Foggy Notions earlier this month! The winners of 2009's YMCA and Algoma University Battles of the Bands, expect one heavy as hell set from these rising stars of the local scene! Joining them will be Out Of The Mouth Of Babes, the local hardcore band featuring what is essentially the final lineup of As It Stands, if you had Matt Maccarone from A Fall From Innocence singing in place of Justin Pregent! This is their first ever live concert, so I have no idea what to expect. Will we get all new songs, or maybe some AIS classics, or possibly some covers? We'll find out Saturday night after 9:00 PM! Rounding out the lineup is DJ Spruceau, who will mix some stuff on his turntables that night as well! That honestly does seem like a weird clash of genres, but I bet he's very talented! Get full details on this, the heaviest of the Hope4Haiti shows (and the one I'm attending) at this location! For a preview, check out this video of Bring The Fallen performing their original "Night Riders" from a show last year at The Oddfellows Hall!

Meanwhile, if you wanna rock out with some great covers of your favourite hard rock songs, you'll wanna be at The Algonquin Pub and Sports Bar Saturday night, when Turner Up rock out for Haiti! Just a week after playing at The Nicolet Tavern for Bon Soo, they'll be downstairs at The Quinn for a nice long set of rock favourites! Sure, you can go see them Wednesdays at Foggy's for jam nights, but why not go see a full 100% concert from these guys? Plus, they're hyping giveaways, and who doesn't love free stuff? They will be on at around 10:30 PM. I wish I could tell you guys more, but I haven't seen them live yet and there's no posted videos of their stuff yet, but by all visible accounts, they have the goods! Confirm your attendance for Turner Up's set at Hope4Haiti at this location!

Now for what's happening at the other 5 venues for Hope4Haiti on Saturday: That's Chester will be back at The Rockstar Bar that night, so they're playing two straight shows! I wonder who'll be louder, That's Chester upstairs or Turner Up downstairs? Confirm your attendance for That's Chester at this location! Also that night, local acoustic indie bands The Pine Cones and Broken House will hit The Bottoms Up Lounge for a night of more intimate music! If that's your thing, or you wanna mellow out, that should be a good bet, click here for the Facebook event page! Meanwhile, back at Foggy Notions, local indie band The Tenagens and punk rockers The Scary Uncles (featuring ex-members of SIGHdEFECT & Fitswitch) will hit the stage to rock out there! That should be a good show as well, especially for The Uncles! Confirm your attendance for that portion at the Facebook event page! The other show downtown will be at LopLops Lounge, when local funk band Big Wheel and The Spokes headline with special guests Shannon Moan and Honeythroat frontman Mark Kuntsi! And finally, local country band Thin Ice (featuring former Garage Inc. bassist Josh Donofrio) will rock out at The Canadian Nightclub, the only participating venue that isn't in the Queen Street East area! Confirm your attendance for Thin Ice by clicking here! None of the acts at the last two venues are genre matches for most SMS stuff, but they all have great audiences and have lots of talent, hopefully their sets are really successful!

So that's the entertainment lineup for Hope4Haiti this weekend! Now, what else do you need to know? Well, tickets are $10 and are available at the following locations: Every single participating concert venue that I mentioned above, Top Hat Billiards, The Rad Zone at Wellington Square Mall (source here), MP Tony Martin's office on Queen Street, the Sault Youth Association office at Station Tower, and at the local Red Cross office on Allard Street! Your ticket not only gives $10 to Haiti relief funds, but it will guarantee you entrance to EVERY VENUE at no additional cost! So hypothetically, you could go see Out Of The Mouth of Babes at Nite-Life, then head all the way to The Canadian for Thin Ice, and you wouldn't need to re-pay! Also, your ticket entitles you to free pool at Top Hat Billiards all day on Saturday! To the best of my knowledge, every participating concert venue will be having door prizes and possibly more, so keep an eye out for all that! I also heard reports of a silent art auction at LopLops, but I haven't seen recent mention of it. For full details on Algoma Hope4Haiti, click here! If I hear anything else worth noting, I'll update everything for you guys!

And yes, my presence is very likely! Looks like I'll be supporting the Haitian earthquake relief cause at Nite-Life, though we'll have to see who's replacing Sense of Truth at Coch's Corner too. First time seeing what is now Out Of The Mouth Of Babes since 2008, long time coming! And Bring The Fallen? Well everyone could use more death metal, and I'm no exception! Afterwards, I'll have a review, photos, and video of whoever I'm seeing, so stay tuned for all that! And as for you guys, please make it to at least one show, Haiti needs all the help it can get, so why not pitch in? $10 can go a long way if you just do your best to help!
AND NOW, it's time to discuss the SMS polls! As it is the 18th of the month, we have a new one up, but first, let's go over the results of last month's poll! If you remember correctly, the question I posed to you guys was this: What was your favourite new album release from a Sault Ontario metal band in 2009? A record 73 people voted, thanks everyone! Here are the results, going up from last to first!

In dead last with no votes were the two non-studio releases from Woods of Ypres in 2009, the "Allure of the Earth" vinyl and their best-of CD "Independent Nature 2002-2007". Not too surprising, seeing as both weren't full of new material, and "Allure of the Earth" didn't have a widespread CD release. In sixth and seventh respectively were both of Sykotyk Rampage's 2009 albums, "22" (2 votes) and "Moments of Misery" (1 vote.) I don't think that's indicative of their support level (I'm a fan!), but their sound can be a bit polarizing depending on the person, I can see why both albums placed lower. Now here's what puzzles me: "Other" got 6 votes....what'd I miss? Or did some people vote for something from 2008 or earlier, or something non-local or non-metal? I never expected it'd get that high of a total, but hey, people had reasons, and I respect that!

In fourth place with 8 votes was Stillbroke's debut EP, "Never Enough", which doesn't really surprise me. I figured it'd be third or fourth, they are popular, but one could argue they aren't on a Garden of Bedlam-type recognition level yet. No matter, it was a solid EP and some great things are on the horizon! In third with 11 votes, which wasn't where I figured it'd place, was Woods of Ypres' new CD, "Woods IV: The Green Album"! I would have thought this would make first or second place! I know the album can be tough to get into without the right mindset, but it really is brilliantly done! Oh well, hopefully interest picks up in it in 2010! And in second place with 20 votes is the debut self-titled EP from Garden of Bedlam! I thought it'd be in the top two, and look where it was! Great first release, the future is super bright for these guys!

And finally, in first place, with 25 votes, a whopping 34% of the final total, is the new album from Detroit, "Brace For Impact"! I didn't figure this would place first, especially given that it's had the least time to make an impression on us due to it's late release, but I think we have some loyal fans over at The705Scene Forums for helping get the votes up for it! More proof that Detroit have a great following and a positive future, in my opinion! I liked the album myself, congratulations to Detroit on winning! So there's your results for last month's poll, and now it's time to discuss a brand new poll, which I promise is the last in the category of "best something in 2009", but it may be the best one yet! Anyone who frequents local concerts should feel right at home with this one! So I pose this question to you: What was your favourite metal concert in Sault Ontario in 2009? I picked 20 concerts for you guys to vote on, including the only 6 to get votes from my mid-2009 poll in July, and 14 more high profile shows from the latter (and busier) half of the year! Shows got in as a selection by the bands' popularity levels, attendance, show notoriety, and they must have had at least 50% metal bands on the lineup That explains why the Three Days Grace show isn't a choice, but "Other" is there for a reason! Here are your 20 choices for your favourite metal show of 2009, in order by date!

Bands: Blessed By A Broken Heart, As It Stands, Upheaval of an Exorcist, Breaking The Fourth Wall, and Deter
Venue: The Oddfellows Hall
Date: January 9th
Info: Headlined by Montreal's own Blessed By A Broken Heart, this show was one of the first major metal shows of 2009, and featured the last live performance by As It Stands. Northern Rocks Magazine were also on hand at this show for some promotion! Lots of hardcore fans were there, but how good do you think it was?

Bands: Ministry of Zen & Fingerbone (now Half Past)
Venue: Coch's Corner
Date: January 24th
Info: In their first local show since the Rock 2 Roll benefit, London's own Ministry of Zen rocked Coch's Corner! Also featured locals Fingerbone, now known as Half Past in just their second live performance, and last with John Barber and Charles Gibson in their lineup. I was there, it was a great show, and it won the mid-2009 poll, but was it your favourite of the wh0le year?

Bands: The Undead Warriors (now Bring The Fallen), Dirty Virgin, Operation: Killdozer, Sue Inside, The Glass Statues, Train Junky, and Waterslide (YMCA Battle of the Bands)
The Grand Theatre
Date: March 20th
Info: In this showcase of local talent, the band now known as Bring The Fallen stole the show, winning first place, despite being undermanned for their performance!
Dirty Virgin and Operation: Killdozer also took home prizes, while the other bands put on great performances! Also featuring an original YMCA rock opera, the battle was a success, despite no alcohol. What did you think?

Bands: Cattle Decapitation, Psyopus, Beyond Within, and Thekillingfield
Venue: The Oddfellows Hall
Date: April 12th
Info: On Easter Sunday, more death metal invaded Sault Ontario for this concert, headlined by death metal legends Cattle Decapitation, along with Psyopus and Northern Ontario headbangers Beyond Within and Thekillingfield! Despite venue issues, slow ticket sales, and Rose Funeral dropping out, it was one hell of a show! But do you agree?

Bands: Who Made Who
Venue: The Canadian Nightclub
Date: May 15th
Info: Who Made Who gave us their own brand of high voltage rock n' roll at this concert way back in May! The crowd loved every minute of it, and the band did a great job pulling off the AC/DC sound! I loved it, but did you, if you were even there?

Bands: Today I Caught The Plague, Faceless Hulk, Norris, Constructed Apocalypse, and Loyalty Is Dead (now Lorax)
Venue: The Oddfellows Hall
Date: June 11th
Info: More death metal bands hit The Oddfellows Hall in June on The Canadian Crusade Tour, including Thunder Bay's Faceless Hulk and Norris, and the locals now known as Lorax! It sounded like it was an awesome concert, but what do you think?

Bands: Garden of Bedlam & Sense of Truth
Venue: The Canadian Nightclub
Date: July 3rd
Info: In their first show of 2009, Garden of Bedlam celebrated the release of their first EP with a well publicized show at The Canadian, one of the last there before the summer renovations. Sense of Truth joined in as well, in one of their first shows since the addition of Ron Baxter on guitar! Always a treat to see both bands live, what'd you think of this show?

Bands: Woods of Ypres, Inflict, and Necropolis (now Bring The Fallen)
Venue: The Speakeasy
Date: August 16th
Info: David Gold and company made their long awaited return to the our burial ground on August 16th for a night full of metal mayhem! North Bay's Inflict and
the Sault's own Necropolis (now known as Bring The Fallen) set the pace nicely as well! This was one of my personal favourite shows this year, fans of the more extreme metal types wouldn't have wanted to miss it! Do you agree?

Bands: Lion Ride and Nebraska Arms
Venue: Coch's Corner
Date: August 28th
Info: While in town for their slot on the last ever Hempfest, Lion Ride hit Coch's Corner for an energetic fast paced concert full of all their classics!
A large and energetic crowd rocked out to them and Nebraska Arms, providing support with a solid set of indie rock! Lion Ride played here multiple times in 2009, was this your favourite?

Bands: Ultraviolence
Venue: Coch's Corner
Date: September 3rd
Info: Months before they hit the Sault twice in a two month span, Toronto "drunk n' rollers" Ultraviolence rocked Coch's Corner with a solid set of their AC/DC inspired classics! Always an entertaining band, how would you guys say this stacks up among this year's metal shows?

Bands: Garden of Bedlam & Bring The Fallen
Venue: The Canadian Nightclub
Date: October 17th
Info: When The Canadian emerged from it's top to bottom renovations, Garden of Bedlam and Bring The Fallen were there to greet it with a metal onslaught this past October! With great originals and covers from both bands alike, and a dedicated loyal turnout, it was as much of a success as it could be! The Canadian looked nice too! Where does this show rank?

Bands: Grady & Domenica
Venue: The Canadian Nightclub
Date: October 25th
Info: Though dogged by a low weekday turnout and a threatened boycott of the planned local openers
, Grady and Domenica delivered a unique night of hard rock to the fans who did show up! Gordie Johnson and his Grady bandmates ruled with their brand of "country metal", while Domenica were great too and definitely displayed their talent! I know for a fact the people that were there had fun, myself included, but how about you?

Bands: Upheaval of an Exorcist, Garden of Bedlam, Bring The Fallen, and The Fury
Venue: The Oddfellows Hall
Date: October 30th
Info: After June, metal concerts at The Oddfellows Hall seemed rare, but Big Voiced Records brought some great stuff there on Devil's Night, when Sudbury's Upheaval of an Exorcist made their long awaited return to Sault Ste. Marie, with loads of local talent in tow! The scene has been shifting to bar shows in recent months, so this sure was a great night for Oddies fans, and Garden of Bedlam followers too! Was this your favourite?

Bands: Frightlight, Half Past, and Glamoween
Venue: Coch's Corner
Date: October 31st
Info: THE Halloween party (caps intentional) hit Coch's Corner when the horror-influenced
Frightlight (featuring 3 ex-members of Fitswitch) made their live debut! It also marked the return of Half Past following months of inactivity, and featured the one-off local glam rock tribute Glamoween as openers! Lots of work was put into this special Halloween themed concert, did it work to make you vote for it?

Bands: Garden of Bedlam, Lion Ride, Nixxon Dixxon, Sense of Truth, Bring The Fallen, Caveman Morrison, Dirty Virgin, Inside Spiral, Stillbroke, Sykotyk Rampage, The Billy Bastards, Blues Harvest, Flat Stanley, Gsis Murphy, Huckster, Middle of Nowhere, Nebraska Arms, Stiffler's Mom, Tiny Trebuchet, and Wishbone (Kiss Battle of the Bands)
Venue: The Canadian Nightclub
Date: November 30th-December 2nd
This needs no introduction, it was so huge! 20 local bands, 10 of which were metal/hard rock, played to a packed Canadian Nightclub all for the right to back up Kiss at their concert here in the Soo, now postponed until this summer! The energy was intense, the club was packed, and the emotions were running high in an event that lived up to all the hype! Oh, and Garden of Bedlam won, by a single point over Lion Ride! Despite short setlists, would this be your favourite local concert of 2009?

Bands: Garden of Bedlam
Venue: Madison's Pub
Date: December 5th
Info: To celebrate their Kiss battle victory, Garden of Bedlam made their way to Madison's Pub to party with their fans for the first time since claiming the top prize! Lion Ride's Marc O'Lion joined in for a memorable rendition of "The Trooper" at this show as well!
Another fun show, where does this fit on your favourite shows list of 2009?

Bands: Caveman Morrison
Venues: The Rockstar Bar & Foggy Notions
Date: Various dates
Info: Since his local return, Tym Morrison began booking shows for both his acoustic solo act and his main metal cover band, Caveman Morrison, and after a return show in August, the Caveman and company got back into regular gigging mode in December, playing shows at The Rockstar Bar and Foggy Notions, notably at the Foggy's VIP party prior to the grand opening!
I'll group these shows together in this unique case, were any of them your favourite?

Bands: Sense of Truth & The Scary Uncles
Venue: Foggy Notions
Date: December 18th
Info: After many long months, Foggy Notions held it's grand re-opening on December 18th, with entertainment from hard rockers Sense of Truth and local punk rockers The Scary Uncles
! I know there was a huge turnout for this, as both bands are very popular and it's Foggy Notions! Couldn't make it, but I know both bands knocked it right out of the park! Was it your top 2009 metal show?

Bands: Lion Ride & Nebraska Arms
Venue: The Rockstar Bar
Date: December 27th
Info: A few weeks after their heartbreaking one point loss at the Kiss battle, Lion Ride returned for a concert at The Rockstar Bar with Nebraska Arms! A packed house of devoted fans followed, so really, who needs Kiss? Great show, the band were on fire as they always are, what do you think?

Bands: Detroit, Destroilet, and Talk Shit
Venue: Coch's Corner
Date: December 29th
Info: A night of metal influenced punk and hardcore was the spectacle at Coch's Corner on December 29th, as Detroit celebrated the release of their new CD, "Brace For Impact"! Destroilet made their live debut with a solid set, while Talk Shit kept the 100% punk fans entertained as openers! The show seemed like a big party, with band members guesting on each other's songs and the beer flowed readily! Great sendoff to 2009, what say you about this show?

Other: Many other Sault Ontario shows happened this year, including the various punk/indie shows with metal bands on the bill, Three Days Grace, Garden of Bedlam at Foggy's on Boxing Day, the various out of town bands at Coch's Corner, the Algoma Battle of the Bands, and many more! Is your favourite not listed? Vote for it here!

VOTE TODAY!!!! Let's see this hit 75 votes, it'd be awesome to break the record on this poll! Stay tuned tomorrow for my next post, which WILL have a LOCAL CONCERT ALERT for this April, an update to this month's Garden of Bedlam/Papa Fogals Chair show, any updates for Hope4Haiti that I come across, and hopefully more! Stay tuned, and VOTE IN THE POLL!!!!

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