Thursday, February 26, 2015

VM Radio Battle Of The Bands Lineup Changes, A Band Breakup, And Much More!!

We're in the midst of a busy stretch at The Sault Metal Scene, and it's only going to get busier come March, so before this month's weekend concert previews & Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile go up, we have a post mostly dedicated to next month's VM Radio Battle of the Bands, including a band exit & breakup, their replacement and new lineup, a slight shuffle in the schedule, and another band's long teased lineup additions, so here's what you should know!

We'll start today with a lineup change for next month's VM Radio Battle of the Bands at The Canadian Nightclub, as local doom/punk trio The Revolution have reportedly disbanded, and therefore won't be competing on Wednesday's opening night. Promoter J.D. Pearce confirmed the news on the Facebook event page yesterday, and the band elaborated on their Facebook page that their breakup and exit from the battle is "due to some personal issues." They explained that this is not due to any internal conflict, but members had expressed interest "to not continue on at this time." Originally the second incarnation of Brutaly Fatal (both bands being led by Austin McCrae), The Revolution had been active since early last year, and quickly made a name for themselves by playing at last year's Swampstravaganza and opening for bands like Endast & Anciients, along with signing with PaperClip Productions, but they hadn't played live since the summer following a lengthy bassist search.

This news will presumably end their sessions for their planned debut EP "Roll Call", but we have seen posthumous local metal albums before. This is definitely disappointing, as I know how hard the guys have been working in the past year to get The Revolution off the ground, but hopefully things remain amicable and that they can reunite down the road! Best of luck to Austin, Jordan, Brandan, and other former members in the future!

With that said, how does their exit impact the VM Radio Battle? For individual competitors, only Austin is fully out of the battle now, as bassist Jordan Leach is still competing with Haggith, while drummer Brandan Glew is the newest member of The Revolution's replacements, Mike Haggith & The Din! Yes, the acid rock/jam band will now be one of four bands playing both of next month's battles (they were previously booked for next Thursday's Speak Easy Battle), and to go along with the news, their Facebook page revealed that their new primary lineup will feature frontman Mike Haggith, guitarist/bassist Curtis McKenzie, and Brandan taking over primary drum duties from Daniel Horton (he, James Watterworth, and Tyler Gibson are all now considered occasional session members.) Brandan has joined The Din at a prior private gig, and they're hinting at a more "clean cut direction", but how will The Din sound next month at these two battles?

Though Mike & The Din are replacing The Revolution, they are not playing next week (Mike has work conflicts on Wednesday night), so night #1 will now only have 3 competing bands (The Bear Hunters, Honest Job, and Infamous), while The Din will join The Apocalypse Afterparty, Gnaeus, and Project 421 on the last semifinal on March 18th, which will be a mini-rematch of the Speak Easy battle, as all but The Apocalypse Afterparty will have already faced off at that event. At least Project 421 bassist Daniel Horton doesn't have to pull double duty at the battles now that he's not playing with The Din. Will next week's one-night fan voted battle prove to be a bellwether for the March 18th results, or will the judges see what that night's crowd didn't? As for the teased "special guest performance" that was planned for the 18th, J.D. confirmed on the Facebook event page last night that local alternative/grunge trio The Pixo Control will be playing an out-of-competition set on Wednesday night!

Presumably not competing in the battle due to their signing with Tidal Records (a presenting sponsor), it will be nice to see them back on stage on Wednesday, and hopefully they deliver a solid set even if not involved in the actual battle! As for the battle itself, can The Bear Hunters continue their battle success, or will Honest Job and/or Infamous play spoiler on Wednesday? Find out then, and get your tickets A.S.A.P.! $15 packages for the whole month are available through band members, and they're otherwise $5 at the door each night (barring the $10 finals on March 25th.) 8:00 PM nightly, ALL AGES, so don't miss all of next month's action, and stay tuned for more on this battle as it rolls in!

We'll close today with some overdue updates from the aforementioned Apocalypse Afterparty, who have been hard at work on their new lineup in recent weeks, so what do we know now? After prior teases, the rap/metal project have confirmed the addition of at least two new female band members on their Facebook page, and while their usual secrecy hasn't wavered regarding identities, new pictures indicate that they've enlisted former Time of Ruin guitarist Sara Biedermann on bass! Great to see her in a local band again, it's been way too long! No word yet on what her alias or stage getup will be, but a letter moniker and a mask would seem likely. The other new member hasn't been leaked in new photos yet, but if we hear anything definitive, we'll let you know! Along with some new photos and tease-filled postings, this video was shared via "songwriter" Paul Stanghetta's personal Facebook page featuring their current lineup, so what can we see and hear?

It's of the band playing an unidentified original (I think), and while most of the band isn't in frame throughout, you can see an unmasked X (who looks suspiciously like RedD Monkey's Steve Mozarowski) drumming for the duration. The band shows a fuller sound here, but obviously, we won't see a fully realized version of The Apocalypse Afterparty until their VM Radio Battle set on March 18th. Give their newest Facebook video a look below, stay tuned for more on them and their new lineup as it rolls in, and don't miss them at next month's battle!

That's all for now, but stay tuned for this month's Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile and weekend concert previews next! Thanks everyone!

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