Let's close this weekend off right with my review of last night's Browbeat concert, but we'll lead off with some LOCAL CONCERT ALERTS that should interest you metalheads! Here's what you need to know!
The next Roosevelt Hotel metal night will take place on March 31st (one week from Thursday), and it will feature the debut of a new local metal band! Skull After Betrayal (featuring Bear Hunters & Despised Eyes alumni) will make their first ever appearance on a local concert stage as one of the headliners at this concert! Remember to check them out on MySpace as a preview, but due to the quality of the posted recordings, you'll likely be better served to judge them live for a first impression. They do sound promising though from what I've seen! Joining them will be local hardcore quintet As It Stands in their first local show following a recent out of town swing. With new studio material in hand and a continuing heavy assault to bring to their local fans, look for another impressive set from them next week! Though the final band has not been publically announced by bands or promoters, I can confirm that the third band will be grimecore trio Shit Liver, in their first local concert since opening for The Rebel Spell earlier this month! They have yet to announce the show, but promoter Rich Moreland confirmed their involvement with me earlier today. The same house rules apply here from earlier metal nights, those being 9:30 PM start time, 19+ age limit, and no cover. Stay tuned for updates if they come in!
The other new show will take place on Saturday, April 2nd, and it will feature an out of town band headlining! On that day, Montreal progressive sludge metal band The Great Sabatini will finally make their way to Sault Ontario over five months after a planned local date on Halloween last year that never found a secured booking, but this time, they'll for sure be playing at Foggy Notions! Their sound is quite unique compared to what we tend to see locally, with lots of doom metal inspired aggression, but they should make lots of local fans! One local opener is confirmed, and once again, it's Shit Liver (thanks Rich for confirming this with me!) It's a wonder they're not plugging these shows on their pages, time's ticking! A second local opener is expected for this show as well, but they have yet to be announced. This concert will be on April 2nd at Foggy Notions, and it will have a $3 cover, a 19+ age limit, and a likely 10:00 PM start time. Stay tuned for updates as they come in! This also sounds like a good concert, with some nice noisy and technical metal in store, hopefully I can make it out for this one! I'll keep you guys posted!
Now to my review of last night's Browbeat concert, and before anyone asks, their pages aren't down because of a band breakup. They're just down so the band can relaunch them completely with new info, material, and customization to reflect their current lineup. So last night, this was my first time seeing Browbeat live with new drummer Johnny Belanger, and the first time I've seen one of their standard length concert sets since their lone "Social Play" concert, and luckily, they delivered a very good show! It was nice hearing Dutch Vanderploeg's voice in top form after their abbreviated set in October especially, though the cold bug hit again this time around, with bassist James White's voice hit by the flu. It didn't affect their set too much though, and by the second set, his voice was getting stronger! Browbeat launched into three lengthy sets of hard rock and metal originals and covers, including original tracks like "Walk Away", "Sorry", "The Sound You Need", "Days Gone By", and "Narrow Mind", but their launched into some hard rocking covers as well! Along with heavier fare like Metallica, Megadeth, and Judas Priest covers, we also got some interesintg hard rock covers of Eric Clapton's "Tears In Heaven" and even "The Cover of the Rolling Stone", which was definitely interesting!
The band were mostly in top form last night, despite a smaller than expected crowd, which peaked at maybe 20 people. I don't encourage poor attendance, but I do like one aspect of shows like last night, and it's the increased camaraderie and personalization that the band has and gives to the fans that do shows up, which is welcome! Respect who does show up, and you'll get respect back. Dutch made the most of his voice on almost every song, exmplying some nice aggression and melodies where needed, though his vocals on "The Ripper" could have been ramped up a bit. Nice guitar work too, he pulled off some great solos and never seemed to lose a step! James was great on bass too, I like his slap playing and he proved to be good at improvising when Dutch's guitar string broke mid-song! And of course, Johnny was solid on drums, and seemed to be a natural fit in Browbeat! He seemed at ease, and his sense of humour showed, as did the whole band's! Some guest singers even got a chance to join in, including Johnny's Bear Hunters bandmate Nik Deubel, who sang on "Master of Puppets" in clean vocals, oddly enough! I think his clean tone doesn't match what I'm used to for the song, but he proved he can pull it off!
Overall, this was a fun night of music, all things considered, and hopefully next time around, Browbeat can pull in a bigger audience! They've always been a very good hard rock band, and they've put in a lot of work to get to this point, so hopefully there's much more in store from Browbeat in 2011! I did get photos, so click here to check them out, or visit the SMS' Facebook page! And yes, I did get a video, so check out Browbeat playing their song "Sorry" right here!
That's all for tonight, but I have some long overdue news to share tomorrow, so stay tuned for that! Thanks everyone!