Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Anvil Concert Preview, A Major Lineup Change, And Much More!!

Our busiest month at the SMS since last July is almost at it's end, but before April rolls around, we have one last news post for the month of March, so what's on tap today? A new song posting, two newly announced shows that still await a venue announcement, and a surprise guitarist change for a prominent local hard rock band, but first, here's a big concert preview for a major Canadian metal band's local return!

We'll start with a special Wednesday night concert preview for TOMORROW, as Toronto metal legends Anvil will play their third local show since their resurgence, and I guarantee this is not an April Fools joke! Though fans will remember them from their packed appearances at The Canadian Nightclub, tomorrow's show will be at The Rockstar Bar, adding to a more intimate atmosphere that will still suit the metal to come during this stop of their 2015 Hope In Hell Tour! Also, this will be Anvil's first local show with new bassist Chris Robinson (who replaced Sal Italiano last year), but how will he fare with Lips & Robb? Two of the same bands who opened for Anvil last year will return to open tomorrow, including punk/metal quintet Jack Spades and classic metal quartet Project 421, who will both add their skilled renditions to the fray to open up this highly anticipated concert! FYI, if you were hoping for Caym to come back too, we have info on their own return (as headliners) in a bit, so don't worry!

Tomorrow's concert has a 19+ age limit, 10:00 PM start time, and a $15 ticket charge (they're available in advance at The Algonquin Hotel's front desk or through promoter J.D. Pearce), though note that the door charge will be $20. For more details, visit the official Facebook event page! It's great to see Anvil back inthe row, so do NOT miss this show ieat turnout tomorrow, so do NOT miss this show if you can help it! See above for more info, and here's Anvil live earlier this year!

Next up, we have a major lineup change to mention today, as local alternative/hard rock quartet Haggith have welcomed back former bassist Caleb Cachagee as their new guitarist, replacing founding member Daniel Horton. Other than to say his departure was "in similar circumstance" to his brief exit in late 2012, a reason for Daniel leaving hasn't been announced, but Haggith revealed the change on their Facebook page on Sunday, assuring fans "that this is for the best", and this is "the next chapter" in their evolution. While I had heard about some internal issues in the band as of late, this is still disappointing to hear, especially given Daniel's songwriting contributions and clear talent, but he's still in Project 421, and hopefully we hear much more from him musically in the near future! However, seeing Caleb back in the Haggith fold is a nice surprise following his two departures last year, but what does he bring to the table on guitar?

Haggith are next slated to open for Zaum at The Rednecks Saloon on May 11th, so we'll know by then! That said, it's yet to be determined what the guitarist switch means (if anything) for Haggith's upcoming albums "Apocalypse II" & "XIV", including if songs will be dropped like was once planned when Daniel left in 2012, but I'm sure we'll hear more shortly. For more details, visit the above links!

Before we wrap up with a Haggith-related video posting, here's some preliminary news on two upcoming concerts that fans are already anticipating, though both await venue confirmation. One will take place on Friday, May 15th, and it will feature the return of Toronto death metal band Caym for their third local concert appearance, with local support courtesy of Jack Spades, The Bear Hunters, and at least one more band to be announced. Promoted by J.D. Pearce, this show will have a $10 admission fee, but again, no venue has been announced yet (for reference, Caym's past local shows were at The Canadian.) Click here for more details in the interim! The other planned show will be on Thursday, June 25th, and it will see Dayton, Ohio "cyber pornoslam" band Menstrual Munchies (that's their name, don't shoot the messenger!) make their local debut alongside local metal bands Rotopsy, Brutally Fatal, Them, and Crucify the Whore, and rapper Mikey Thomas, along with a co-headliner to be announced.

Visibly promoted by C.T.W.'s Tyler Gibson (who's apparently working on a split of some kind with the headliners), there's no venue for this planned show yet either, but given the track record of Blood Shed & Heavy North Entertainment events, this will likely either be an Oddfellows Hall or house party event. Click here for current details, but as always, we don't call concerts on here without a confirmed venue, so stay tuned for more info on both as we hear it!

Finally for today, here's a new song from Haggith drummer Mike Haggith's solo project, courtesy of his YouTube channel yesterday, and it's "A Drive Through The Peninsula", the same song that Mike teased via this Facebook photo of the lyrics. Featuring bandmate Curtis McKenzie on guitar solos, the song is planned for Mike's upcoming solo album "The Warinside", and it continues his recent orchestral rock trajectory, but we'll hold on reviewing the song until our likely review of the whole album later this year. Check out Mike's new song below!

That's all for today (and this month), but stay tuned for weekend concert previews and more in the coming days! Thanks everyone!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Telephone & Address - "Rust Orchid" Review!!

After looking at Treble Charger's debut album last month, we're back with new releases for this month's CD review (our 69th total on the site), as we're looking at local grunge/punk solo project Telephone & Address' newest album "Rust Orchid"! The seventh album from this project (though the third since their recent local resurgence), "Rust Orchid" was released online via Bandcamp on February 17th, with physical copies being launched earlier this month at a CD release concert at The Gore Street Cafe. Featuring project founder Chris Shoust on all instruments, this album was recorded last fall, is SOCAN registered, and was again released through Harmisntus Productions. Physical copies (with slightly varying artwork) can be bought through Chris directly in limited quantities for $15, while digital copies on Bandcamp (with a totally different cover) cost the same amount, and can be streamed in full there too. As well, all song titles linked below are to their Bandcamp copies.

Featuring 16 tracks coming in at around 38 minutes in total length, let's begin this review with the first song, fittingly titled "One"! The first of six songs on "Rust Orchid" to run for under 2 minutes (and of 8 to be titled by their track order), this song gives our first glimpse of the direction of the album, as it shifts from the bass/drum aggression of "Need Not Apply" to an instrumental ambient rock sound, with "One" harboring a dark, repetitive melody that still maintains Telephone & Address' lo-fi recording nature. It's an interesting track, but it ends before you really get into it. Next is "Abstract Poem", which is the only track on "Rust Orchid" to surpass 3:30 in length, and the title is an accurate representation of the song. Feedback-heavy instrumentation, programmed drums, and hard-to-decipher spoken word recitations are the theme here. There's almost a techno vibe at times, and while it's different from anything I usually hear for the site, it's intriguing in it's own right!

Third is "Factory Song", which again has a fitting title, with the instrumentation, drum beat, and effects helping give a vibe of a factory or machine shop, albeit with beeping effects that sound like they came from an old video game. The song has a dark marching quality to it, almost as if there was a factory uprising, but this song does get repetitive by it's latter stages. That's followed by "Slow Time/No Time", a slower ballad that features minimalistic guitar work and heavily processed vocals reciting the song title in the background here and there. This trajectory never really changes, and while it gives an ominous vibe, it ends too quickly and it feels like it's going somewhere that never arrives. Fifth is the appropriately titled "Five", which is an album-low 16 seconds in length, and comprises mainly of a techno-styled beat that fades in and out. It's not bad sounding, but as it's so short, it's also hard to compare to what came before.

Sixth is "Looking Glass", which comes the closest yet to a "punk" sound, but still makes use of a trance-like quality, softer effects that almost sound like an xylophone is being played, and more spoken word recitations in the background, including what sounds like "Paralyze" being said at times. This song has good qualities, and the instrumentation is solid throughout, but it's arguably the most jumbled song yet for what is played and added to it. The next three songs are fittingly titled "Seven", "Eight", and "Nine", with "Seven" giving off the vibe of slowed down carnival music amidst it's ambient instrumentation, and though it is well performed, it never really deviates from the existing melody and gets repetitive fast. "Eight" is just 52 seconds long, and comprises of distorted music for it's duration that almost sounds like an mp3 file is glitching up, while still maintaining a musical beat. It's not much of a song, but it's interesting!

As for "Nine", it has more of a techno beat for it's melody, which is almost danceable, but doesn't harbour the dark ambient qualities of the longer songs that came before it. Catchy, but there's more substance on the tenth song "Traffic", which has a stop-start guitar riff that continues the techno-styled beat of it's predecessor somewhat. This song in particular sounds unfinished, almost as if it was written for a full band that wasn't there, but it's not a bad listen! The next three songs (and last to be titled by track order) are "Eleven", "Twelve", and "Thirteen", with "Eleven" harbouring a feedback-heavy sound with what sounds like a minimalistic keyboard melody over-top. This song is a little challenging to listen to straight through given it's repetition, and I'd like the guitar to be more prominent here. "Twelve" is a slower darker number that's more standard in structure, but again, it gets repetitive by it's latter stretch, despite it's short length.

"Thirteen" continues with the dark themes of "Twelve", but with more feedback and with a slower, more deliberate pace. This song stretches on a bit long, but the tone is fitting given the unlucky themes around the number 13! That's followed by "Plumbers", a slow paced song that has another deliberate structure, though with a nice slow guitar performance and a bit of a guitar solo, which is a nice change of pace! This song more than any other feels like a full band is present, but it's not as ambient or dark as some preceding tracks, nor as aggressive as material on old albums. Second-last is "Sunrise", which has an optimistic sound that adds as much lightness to the distorted ambient rock on "Rust Orchid" as you can, and while it is a bit muddled, it's well performed, and Chris showcases his diverse talents here! Fittingly, the album closes with "Sunset", which is dark in tone, but also minimalistic with it's guitar work and effects, but it does reflect the title, and it's an effective way to turn the lights off on this record!

So, what are my thoughts on "Rust Orchid"? Overall, this is one of the toughest albums I've ever reviewed for the site, especially as we've never really looked at an album like this before. When Chris Shoust hyped that this would be very different than "Need Not Apply", he meant it! There's few glimpses of punk or grunge here, instead with distorted, effect-laden ambient rock, and all instrumental save for a few early songs with spoken word passages. I can't say I was bored by "Rust Orchid", and there were some effectively entertaining songs (like "Abstract Poem", "Factory Song", and "Plumbers"), but I'd argue that some of the shorter numbered songs don't really stand on their own as full "songs", and others still got repetitive or jumbled by their last halves. I like and appreciate what Chris has done with "Rust Orchid", and while as a punk and metal fan at heart, I did enjoy "The Rotten EP" & "Need Not Apply" more, this is a bold album that definitely deserves a listen, and I'd be curious to see how these songs are approached live! Check it out above!

I hope you guys liked this month's CD review! So, what album is coming next to review on the site in April? I honestly have no idea, but here's what I can tell you. In terms of what's not coming next, we won't be looking at anything from Telephone & Address, Treble Charger, SweetKenny, or The Bear Hunters next, as we're not past our 6 month buffer period for them to prevent showing a bias to them or against other bands. Thursday's next "Where Are The New Albums?" post will have some possible albums, pending if any of them come out next month, but if no major new metal, hard rock, or punk albums come out next month that we can obtain, we'll dip into the archives, but with only a handful of April concerts currently announced, it's premature to see what could possibly tie in with a band or artist playing next month. If nothing works, might we look at a Rising Tide album for the first time, or perhaps Woods of Ypres' "Home" single? We'll know for sure next month, and stay tuned for a new news post tomorrow! Thanks everyone!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

New VM Radio Battle Of The Bands Videos, Das Bunkerfest II Updates, And More!!

As we slowly wind down the month of March, we have a new news post for your Sunday afternoon, which includes some assorted updates, a big change for a hyped upcoming concert event, but first, we have new videos from this month's VM Radio Battle of the Bands via one act's own uploads and the last of a local webseries' coverage, so here's what you should know!

We'll start with our long awaited look at the last of Local2's four part video look at this month's VM Radio Battle of the Bands at The Canadian Nightclub via their newest Tuned episode! Notably guest-hosted by VM Radio's Derek Turner (also Garden of Bedlam's drummer) in lieu of Donna Hopper, who was under the weather at the time, the episode otherwise follows the structure of the last three episodes, starting with a recap of the previous week's semifinal by judges Rob Speers and myself (no Dustin Jones again due to scheduling conflicts), before featuring introductions and performance footage of the finalist bands (the fourth place Apocalypse Afterparty, runners-up The Bear Hunters, third place Mannapool, and winners/wild cards Gnaeus), before showing the first place award presentation to Gnaeus. Though shorter than I expected (with no footage of the individual award presentations), this is a another solid episode of Tuned, and Derek filled in well as guest host!

No word yet on if there will be a judges' recap video on the finals, but if called to do one, I'm open to it! This was a great battle of the bands, so be sure to check out all four of these Tuned episodes to get caught up on this event that was! (Note that while this episode features a new video player on Local2, it still doesn't visibly allow external embedding.)

Next up, one of the bands from said battle have posted some new videos from their semifinal set onto their Facebook page, they being week #3 competitors Mike Haggith & The Din! The alternative/acid rock trio were filmed by an attendee playing original songs "Of Cars & Criminals", "We Met As Surrogates", "This Potato May Be Used As A Flotation Device", "Cowardly Hearts Beneath The Stars", and (as embedded below) their cover of Live's "Lightning Crashes", with all uploaded to their Facebook page last week,  though note that "Cowardly Hearts..." is filmed on a sideways angle for one reason or another. All are well filmed with solid audio quality from up close to the stage, though Mike remains hard to hear on vocals like he was live at the event. I concede liking their older jam rock style more, but the new Din material is more focused and direct, so check out the new videos above & below! (And yes, I saw the teased Haggith lineup changes, we're waiting for more info on that.)

Also today, here's the latest on this August's Das Bunkerfest II, including a major planned change to the venue. Co-promoter/AlgomA frontman Boyd Rendell (a.k.a. Darby Wigwaus) revealed on the Facebook event page last week that the show won't be hosted at "Das Bunker" in Garden River like it was last summer, as Boyd has opted to hand ownership of the property over to his sister, but he is planning to host Das Bunkerfest in a new location to be determined, citing that he has "THE best minds in SSM show promoting it", so he's not worried. Before the announcement, there were two lineup changes, as Saskatchewan stoner metal band Chronobot dropped out due to frontman Darius Simonot & family expecting a new baby (congratulations!), but Toronto punk band The Cola Heads (featuring Detroit alum/Soo native Curtis Faux) were added to the lineup as well, which is awesome if things hold up!

That said, things can change in the interim, and Boyd isn't forecasting ticket availability until late May, so visit the above links for more details as they roll in, and hopefully Das Bunkerfest II goes on as planned at a new home!

Finally for today, here's three assorted shorter items from the last little while, and as usual, these are in alphabetical order by artist, venue, or company name:

  • Though not the focus of the article, a photo of Dustin Jones & The Rising Tide's set, plus one of Tidal Records artists (including The Pixo Control) are included in Donna Hopper's photo album from The Boot Hill Crooners' CD release party at LopLops on March 20th, which you can check out on SooToday along with an article on the event! Nicely written, so be sure to read it if you're a Crooners fan or missed the show! For reference, their set did include a Hank Williams III cover.
  • Local indie/punk band Northwest will be featured in an upcoming episode of Local2's new acoustic stripped-down performance webseries Bare, as per this photo shared on their Facebook page, which confirms that frontman Wayne Watkins and guitarist Greg Callaghan will represent them in the episode. This should be a good one, so keep an eye out for it in the near future!
  • I've deleted defunct local recording studio The Smoke & Oak Room from our "Other Sault Ontario Links" section due to the deletion of it's Facebook (and only online) page. Ran by Blackwater alum Dave Pihlaja, the studio was used to record Crimson Crusade's EP and Beaumont Avenue's initial studio tracks for their yet-released debut album, but Dave moved to Toronto in late 2013, so that might be connected to the page's closure. Hopefully he stays active in music production and bands as well!

That's all for today, but stay tuned for much more this week, including this month's CD review likely next! Thanks everyone!

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Benighted Concert Video Showcase!!

As we get back into the swing of things after the battle of the bands, we have a special video showcase post featuring videos from a recent all ages metal concert, but be sure to check out our Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile on My Dear Malice in the post below this one! As you may remember, French grindcore band Benighted and Montreal progressive death metal band Bookakee headlined a well received show at The Oddfellows Hall exactly three weeks ago today, and in the process, someone on tour with the bands filmed eight videos from seven of that night's bands for the Montreal Metal Shows YouTube channel, as they've been doing for the duration of Benighted's Canadian tour, which is a nice bonus for local fans! The videos shot for this channel come from all of the bands at the Soo show, with the exception of newer metal trio Them (who played first), and while that was presumably due to timing issues, it does flow with Them's seemingly intended secrecy, with no posted media or online pages yet from them. We'll know more at some point, hopefully!

We'll touch on the videos of local openers Mike Haggith & The Din, Rotopsy, and Crucify The Whore in an upcoming post in order to spread them out, but let's go in descending order from that night with a look at headliners Benighted, whose filmed video at the local concert was of them playing their song "Foetus". Solid quality from right up close to the stage, and you get a good sense of Benighted's brutality and technical skill, with lots of moshing fans, but the audio is a bit muffled. Strong footage, so check it out below!

Next up, here's co-headliners Bookakee bringing their theatrical stage show to the Soo, with their filmed video being of their songs "A Night To Dismemember" and "Whorrific", which opened their 2013 album named after the latter song. It's somewhat odd that their video is on a stationary angle (maybe a band member was filming?), so it doesn't completely capture Bookakee's costumes or setup, but the relentless fast-paced songs come through fine, so give their songs a look below as well!

The highest placed local band three weeks ago were VM Radio Battle runners-up The Bear Hunters, whose filmed video was of their song "I Fear No God". Well filmed with much brighter lighting, this captures one of the guys' better new originals, plus a lively pit, so give it a look below!

Lastly for today, we'll feature the video of late-additions Bad Back, whose filmed songs were their original "Two Tongues" & their cover of The Refused's "Rather Be Dead". Is it ironic that the last four bands at this show had names starting with the letter B? Nicely filmed again and of solid quality, but Jamie & Nathan are oddly further apart than fans are likely used to from their sets, though it's worth noting that setup for The Bear Hunters' set appears to be ongoing during this video. Nice to hear Bad Back's grunge/hardcore hybrid on stage again, so give their video a look below!

That's all for today, but stay tuned for this month's CD review, the rest of the Benighted concert videos, and more in the coming days! Thanks everyone!

Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile: My Dear Malice

After a couple of days' delay due to battle of the bands wrap-up coverage, here's this month's Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile! As usual, this is our monthly profile of a metal, hard rock, or punk band that is based outside of our coverage range, but features a local musician in their current or past lineup, in order for readers to learn more about them and check them and their material out! This month's choice is a rising death metal/hardcore band from Southern Ontario featuring a familiar face from the Rosie metal nights' heyday, so here's what you should know!
My Dear Malice (Cambridge, Ontario)

Lineup: (Saultites in RED; ex-members in italics)

Jesse Furtado (vocals)
Cosmo Posch (lead guitar)
Nick Santos (rhythm guitar)
Jason Simpson (bass)
Kameron Nicholson (drums)
Nick Andrews (drums)

Official Facebook page: http://facebook.com/mydearmalice
Official Twitter page: http://www.twitter.com/mydearmalice
Official Bandcamp page: http://mydearmalice.bandcamp.com
Official Instagram page: http://instagram.com/mydearmalice
Official YouTube channel: http://youtube.com/mydearmalice

Local Info: My Dear Malice's only local member is current drummer Kameron Nicholson, who local readers will best recognize from his work with the defunct Central Algoma death metal band For All That Is Lost from 2010-2013! F.A.T.I.L. rose to local prominence in the early 2010s via many CASS Cafe sets, numerous Roosevelt Hotel metal night appearances, and opening slots for bands like Fuck The Facts, Biipiigwan, and Abriosis that fans are sure to remember fondly! Though F.A.T.I.L. reunions have been teased since their breakup, Kameron moved to his Cambridge hometown early last year, and joined his current band My Dear Malice last May. 

Band Bio: Launched in January 2013 by alumni of the older metal band Twisted Heroics, My Dear Malice soon began writing and recording original material, releasing their debut EP "Phantom" in January of last year. After founding drummer Nick Andrews left the band, Kameron Nicholson joined M.D.M. last spring, and the band began playing live concerts last summer. Since then, My Dear Malice have upped their concert frequency, recorded their new single "The Veldt" in studio, and even appeared live on local radio, with a CD release show for their next full release coming in May, so keep posted on band pages for more updates! Playing more of a deathcore hybrid sound than F.A.T.I.L. were known for, My Dear Malice have an energetic and heavy sound that should be up the alleys of fans of local bands like State of Misery! Strong varied music with some progressive touches and a relentless vocal attack, and it's impressive how they recorded an EP before ever playing live!

I like the mix of hardcore and death metal, and the guys all show clear talent (especially Cosmo & Nick on guitar), while Jesse's vocals are very versatile, and we all know how good of a drummer Kameron is! Hopefully My Dear Malice continue their steady growth, and it'd be neat to see them play up north at some point! Be sure to check the above links for their posted material, and there's a handful of live videos on YouTube as well, such as this video of M.D.M. playing their song "Dream Catcher" live last fall!

I hope you guys liked this month's Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile! Next month in this series, we're staying in Southern Ontario with a look at London metalcore band Our Place Or Yours, who feature Hiroshima Mutant Mindframe leader Matt Parr on guitar, so look for that on or around April 26th! That's all for today, but stay tuned for more news and notes in the coming days! Thanks everyone!

Friday, March 27, 2015

VM Radio Battle Of The Bands Recap, Fallout, And Final Results!!

Hey guys, sorry for the delay in this getting on the site, but videos took extra long (we'll elaborate on why in a bit.) Wednesday night saw the final round in the month-long VM Radio Battle of the Bands at The Canadian Nightclub, as the final four bands gathered one last time to compete for the top prize, though remember that due to my judging commitments and to avoid any bias accusations, I will not critique or review the bands' sets here, just recap what we all saw. After a random drawing, the first band on Wednesday was local genre-hating quartet The Apocalypse Afterparty (who won last week's semifinal), and they played largely the same set as before to another solid reception, but partly due to their night-opening placement, their fan response was far lower than before. RedD Monkey fans were pleased to see them cover "Fo' Dozen Cookies" at set's end, complete with Z & X swapping frontman and drum roles to facilitate that, and if you know X's alter ego, this will make complete sense!

They even sold bandanas at the battle, and gave the judges chocolate chip cookies, but did that help in the final total? Next up were week 1 winners The Bear Hunters, who broke out the extra camouflage for their set, as well as a new song named "The Dying Den" to join existing originals like "I Fear No God", but one lasting image will be the slaughter of assorted teddy bears during their set, with stuffing littering the floor! The name's not just a name, bears are indeed the enemy! The Bear Hunters also had the best fan response of the night, with one attendee even bringing a sign, but did that all help push them over the edge? Third up on Wednesday night were week 2 winners Mannapool, who had an improved placement to benefit their well recieved originals like "Beckoning" and "Way Home" that had arguably more of a presence of softer and slower songs than in the semifinals. Did Mannapool turn out the top scores in the final round?

For a second straight week, wild card finalists Gnaeus played last (lucky draw!), and they brought their garage/punk sound to the finals for a set of mostly originals like "The Curse" and the fan-requested "Numbers", plus covers of The Cold War Kids & Daniel Lioneye (fans of Viva La Bam loved that), and while they had a good reception and fan turnout, was that enough to tip them over the edge? After their set were most of the prize announcements, but we'll start by addressing the eight individual awards, which were partially announced between sets as well, and with all performers winning a certificate to go along with the main prize. The Bear Hunters were the only band to pick up two of these awards, with Mitch Sirie winning a Case's Music gear package for Best Guitar Player and drummer Johnny Belanger picking up a custom drum skin from Maxx Graphix for winning Best Drummer!

As for other performer awards, they went to non-finalists, with Haggith frontman Curtis McKenzie winning a new microphone from Right Hook Mics for Best Vocal Performance, while Honest Job bassist Jared Fridy won a Case's Music gear package for Best Bass Player (not bad for his first show with them!) He was the only award winner who couldn't attend the finals, so his bandmates accepted on his behalf. In terms of the separate awards for bands, Gnaeus won recording time with Tidal Records for Best Overall Song ("Circles" from their semifinal set), The Apocalypse Afterparty won a case of Bomb Energy Drinks and a Bomb t-shirt for Most Energetic Band, and in a bit of a surprise, classic metal quartet Project 421 won the coveted Budweiser/Marshall amplifier beer fridge for Fan Favourite Band! Even I wanted that one! As for the Most Enthusiastic Fan award, even that went to a competitor, with Danger Cats drummer "Calico" Katie Maskell winning the $100 Rad Zone gift certificate, as she was always at the finals cheering on the bands!

And now, to the grand prize winners, so who won this huge battle of the bands? I will say beforehand that first and second place were only separated by 2 POINTS, and like in Mannapool's second night victory, any little thing might have shifted the results in the other direction! It was razor close, but who took first place? Here's the final placements!

1st Place: Gnaeus
2nd Place: The Bear Hunters
3rd Place: Mannapool
4th Place: The Apocalypse Afterparty

For the second time in three weeks, GNAEUS have came out on top in a local battle of the bands, becoming the first band since Bring The Fallen in 2009 & 2010 to win two battles in Sault Ontario! It's not easy to out-place 13 different bands at two consecutive events, but in this hot streak, that's exactly what they've did! This talented young quartet won $1,000, a professionally produced electronic press kit and video from VM Radio, and a huge framed plaque to commemorate their victory, and if this doesn't help jumpstart their local run, nothing will! It's worth noting that they did win the battle after being the wild card last week, but as we saw with Haggith & the former Pesto Shirts' podium finishes two years ago, being the wild card is not a handicap, and it can be a motivating factor for a band in that spot to bring their A-game and show that they deserve to be there, which Gnaeus certainly did! Congratulations to Aaron, Brad, Matt, and Brendan on their battle victories!

The Bear Hunters' close loss may be disappointing, but again, they came within 2 points of their own second battle of the bands win, and this is far & away their best ever finish at a judged battle of the bands, so congratulations to them on that level (and I did save one of the poor slaughtered teddy bears so it wouldn't die in vain!) Mannapool surprisingly didn't win any announced awards, but with a strong third place finish and a huge impression left on many new fans, this can only help their exposure as they continue their local growth in 2015 and beyond! And The Apocalypse Afterparty's entertaining sets definitely gave a lot of fans something to talk about, no matter how familiar you were with them before, and even though they couldn't reach The Fury's old battle heights, they've made their mark! Overall, this was a great battle of the bands, and I was honoured to bear witness to this collection of talent this month! If I ever get the call to judge another battle, I'd be more than happy to sign on!

I want to thank J.D. Pearce (a.k.a. Johnny Pints) for having me on to judge this month, Dustin Jones & Rob Speers for their friendliness and insight as we judged the event, Donna Hopper for all of her excellent photos, Dan Nystedt for having me in for this month's Tuned episodes, everyone at Tidal Records and Village Media for their hospitality this month, and all of the above sponsors for making this event possible! And of course, thanks to all 11 of this month's bands for putting on such a great event, and to The Pixo Control for a great guest set during week #1, you guys would have been strong contenders had you been competing! I just hope I added something to the process, and if the opportunity arises to work with the organizers of this battle again, I'm all for it!

As seen above, Donna Hopper was on hand to take photos during the finals for this SooToday recap article, which includes an awards breakdown and remarks from Gnaeus members on their win, so be sure to give it a look! Her photos include 4 each from The Apocalypse Afterparty & The Bear Hunters' sets, 3 each from Mannapool & Gnaeus' sets, and 2 of The Bear Hunters' fans, with the rest coming from and during the awarding of prizes to winning bands and artists. All are great as usual, so be sure to check them out above! The new Tuned episode is online as well, but we'll hold that for an upcoming news post to give it proper emphasis, especially given the length of this recap post. As for our videos, I decided to film the first two songs of each band, as I did at the 2013 Rockstar Bar Battle finals, just to do a little something extra for each band to mark their finals run, so what did we film from each band?

In chronological order by set, here's The Apocalypse Afterparty covering Saul Williams' "List of Demands (Reparations)" and The Fury's "Rebel Scum", The Bear Hunters playing their songs "Dominate" & "Deception", Mannapool playing their songs "Mayday" & "Controlled Chaos", and Gnaeus playing their songs "Lacking" & "Walls"! That's all for now, but stay tuned for this month's Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile either tonight or tomorrow morning! Thanks everyone, and congratulations again to Gnaeus!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

LOCAL CONCERT ALERTS (Mourning Wood), Weekend Concert Previews, And More!!

Before we recap last night's VM Radio Battle of the Bands finals, here's this weekend's hard rock concert previews, including SHORT NOTICE LOCAL CONCERT ALERTS for TOMORROW & SATURDAY! We also have videos from last week's battle semifinal action, but just for full disclosure, this post was written yesterday and auto-posted at midnight, so there are no references to the final results or critical comments on the videos in question. Now, here's what you should know!

Local classic/hard rock trio Mourning Wood will be pulling triple duty at The Rednecks Saloon this weekend, as TONIGHT'S third weekly jam night will be joined by regular solo concerts there TOMORROW & SATURDAY NIGHT! Apologies for the short notice, bassist Steven Flint only confirmed the shows on his personal Facebook page on Tuesday, and the band hasn't updated their own Facebook page in two weeks. Busy stretch ahead for this talented trio, but Mourning Wood have always had a good relationship with the former Nicolet Tavern, and these jam nights must be getting a positive early response, so whether you want to jam with Mourning Wood TONIGHT, or see them in general on any of these nights, you know where to be! For reference, we'll add April jam nights to our schedule when confirmed by the band. These shows all have no announced cover charge, a 19+ age limit, and 10:00 PM-ish start times. For more details, click here, and here's Mourning Wood live last year!

Moving to previously announced concerts, local hard rock solo singer/guitarist Tym Morrison will return to The Harp Bar & Grill for solo acoustic shows TOMORROW & SATURDAY NIGHT! The last of the March shows on his calendar (though he's scheduled to play at The Harp through at least May according to his website), Tym's skilled and prolific hard rock covers should find another solid audience at the former Madison's Pub this weekend, so hopefully readers keep his latest Harp shows in his lengthy arrangement there in mind for their upcoming plans! Like usual for Tym's Harp run, there's no announced cover charges, you must be 19 to attend, and a 10:00 PM start time is likely. For more details, visit the above links, and for a preview, here's Tym at The Service Grill a few years back!

Finally for this weekend (barring additional late notice shows), veteran local party/hard rock trio Stiffler's Mom will provide the musical entertainment at a chili cook-off for a great cause on SATURDAY NIGHT at The Garden River Community Centre! The event may be atypical for a concert set, but this chili cook-off is a fundraising event for the annual Ride For Sight motorcycle rally for blindness research and prevention, which has been a great cause since it's local chapter began, and members of Stiffler's Mom have been ardent supporters of the event, so everything fits well that way! The chili cook-off aspect may be intriguing to some readers too, as I know many of you like chili, and it's also worth noting that Redundant frontman Justin Langlois and his wife Monique are among the competitors! Prize raffles are also planned for this event, which is ALL AGES, takes place at 5:00 PM (with Stiffler's Mom playing at 9:00), and it has a $20 ticket fee.

You can presumably pay at the door but you can buy advance tickets through Ride For Sight committee members or at local Scotiabank branches, though note that organizers are recommending that you get your tickets at Scotiabank, as the bank is matching all ticket sales that they take in,, which is an awesome gesture! For more details, visit the Facebook event page, don't miss the chili and hard rock action in Garden River on Saturday, and here's Stiffler's Mom last summer!

Finally for today, here's some new stuff from VM Radio Battle finalists The Apocalypse Afterparty! Remember again, this was written before the finals and auto-posted today, so it doesn't critique them or reference the final results. First, we can now confirm via personal postings and conversations that MPC/effects performer z (pronounced "zed") is portrayed by Amanda Brown, who previously led The Afterparty's short-lived Smokin' Heroines supporters group, but to keep with their stage presences and gimmick, we'll still reference her and other members by their stage names. Also, videos from their battle semifinal winning set at The Canadian Nightclub last week were posted on the Facebook event page this past Friday, so what should you know on them? Filmed by attendee Jordon MacDonald at different angles, the videos include two chunks of their set-opening cover of Saul Williams' "List of Demands (Reparations)" (here with intro, and here) and their version of The Fury's "The Crowd", though all are incomplete.

Embedded below though is 5 minutes from multiple songs late in their set, though no word on why the video was shot sideways for much of it. These capture the vibe and energy of the night well, but did The Apocalypse Afterparty finish first, second, third, or fourth last night in the finals? Visit Facebook to find out, and also stay tuned for SooToday and our recaps in the very near future, but for now, give Jordon's Apocalypse Afterparty videos a look above & below!

That's all for now, but stay tuned for our VM Radio Battle of the Bands finals recap next, and again, stay tuned to Facebook for results and fallout when available beforehand! Thanks everyone!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Local Metal Video Showcase!!

In our last post before TONIGHT'S VM Radio Battle of the Bands finals, here's a new all-video post for you guys on this Wednesday morning, including solo performance videos from two artists, live footage from a recent private event, and to kick things off, a new song from local alternative/hard rock quartet Haggith! With "Apocalypse II" now complete (though we await it's paid release), focus now shifts to their upcoming third "mainline" studio album "XIV", as the first full studio track from it is now live on their YouTube channel! It's for their song "Red", which is one of the newer songs for the planned album, and is being referred to as their "first single" from it. A short track featuring guitarist Daniel Horton on bass in lieu of Jordan Leach, it continues Haggith's recent up-tempo hard rock path, but as we do hope to review "XIV" in full in the future, I'll hold full comment for now. Give "Red" a listen below!

Next up, here's the latest from local goregrind solo project Crucify The Whore, who have been hard at work in recent weeks! The Tyler Gibson-led solo act has been campaigning recently to join the lineup of Montreal's Obscene Extreme Festival in August, and you can vote to help Tyler fulfill a longtime goal of his to play this event, so click here to show your support! C.T.W. are also teasing more split demos in the future with out of town grind projects, and two songs from the hinted split with North Bay's Scrotox are up on Bandcamp to check out as well! Most titles and the cover art aren't "safe for work" though, as it were. A sequel to last April's Dank Fest all ages show has also been teased, as have new material releases from many of his local music projects. Most recently, Tyler posted two new concert videos on the Blood Shed Productions YouTube channel this past weekend, both from a recent short notice private house party event, so what should you know?

The videos (one linked here) are of C.T.W. at a Weldon Avenue residence last week, though we won't give either's title here due to both being potentially offensive. Both are also short, and the audio quality is mixed, but they capture a lively fan response to the goregrind action in this more intimate atmosphere! Give the new videos a look above and before, and get more C.T.W. news at their Facebook page!

We'll close today with new solo guitar cover videos, including a few new postings from former For All That Is Lost guitarist Brook Moreau! Sporadic reunion teases aside, we haven't heard a ton from Brook since F.A.T.I.L.'s breakup two years ago, but he's recently began posting cover videos onto his new YouTube channel and on a Facebook page to compile them, so what's within? Two of his three uploads are of Killswitch Engage covers ("Take This Oath" & "Self Revolution"), but embedded below is his cover of August Burns Red's "Composure". He has a solid grasp of these songs, though the audio quality on the video is mixed. Still, give Brook's covers a look above & below!

Lastly, here's four new solo vocal/guitar covers from former Elipzis bassist/Nightmare Grin singer Ryan Harrison's new YouTube channel! A definitely diverse blend of covers includes renditions of Simon & Garfunkel's "The Boxer", Roger Miller's "Me & Bobby McGee", Outkast's "Ms. Jackson", and (as embedded below) Blue October's "For My Brother", which Ryan dedicated in the memory of the late Jake Rameau, who fronted the Muskegon hard rock band Lakeshore Drive before being tragically killed last year when trying to chase down a car thief. Great sentiment, and my thoughts go out to Jake's family and friends! FYI, the man responsible was found guilty a few days ago, Muskegon news sites will have more details. Ryan delivers nice performances on each video, and the emotion shows through when needed, so give Ryan's new solo postings a look above and/or below!

That's all for today, but we'll see you guys TONIGHT at The Canadian for the VM Radio Battle of the Bands Finals! Thanks everyone!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

VM Radio Battle Of The Bands Finals Preview!!

The end is coming ever closer for the biggest local battle of the bands of the 2010s so far, as the finals of the VM Radio Battle of the Bands at The Canadian Nightclub take place TOMORROW NIGHT! After three weeks of exciting action featuring 11 talented local rock bands and a quality guest set from The Pixo Control, the field has been narrowed down to the final four (fitting amidst March Madness), with each semifinal's winner and the highest scoring wild card back one last time tomorrow to compete for huge prizes, with numerous individual prizes awaiting bands and band members alike, so we'll known in short order all of this month's lucky winners! Like in past weeks, band order will be randomly determined, and the judges (Tidal Records' Dustin Jones, VM Radio's Rob Speers, and myself) will judge all four bands on numerous categories relating to their musicianship, stage presence, crowd reaction, and professionalism, but the stakes are ever higher, so who will come out on top? Here's some info on the final four bands in alphabetical order!

The Apocalypse Afterparty: In just their second ever announced public concert in the Soo, this local rap/metal/party rock quartet overcame stiff competition from Gnaeus, Mike Haggith & The Din, and Project 421 last week to advance to tomorrow's finals. Teasing an even crazier show built around the same setlist from night #3, can The Apocalypse Afterparty better "songwriter" Paul Stanghetta's two prior runner-up finishes with The Fury by winning this battle?

The Bear Hunters: The winners of 2013's Viva La Battle, five time battle veterans The Bear Hunters defeated Honest Job and Infamous three weeks ago to become the first band to make the finals this time around. Their death & groove metal originals have helped make them arguably the most familiar of this week's finalists, but can they come out on top in a judged battle of the bands for the first time tomorrow, and what kind of surprises might they have in store?

Gnaeus: Despite being the very last band to play in the semifinal rounds, local post-punk/garage wave quartet Gnaeus came within 4 points of winning last week, and earned enough points to claim the coveted wild card slot for tomorrow's finals. Three weeks after winning the fan voted Speak Easy Battle, Gnaeus will also be rematching The Bear Hunters from that same event, but will results repeat themselves in time for Gnaeus to win their second battle of the bands?

Mannapool: After an incredibly close round two weeks ago that saw 1st & 4th place separated by 8.5 points, local progressive rock quartet Mannapool edged out a victory over The Danger Cats, Haggith, and Stereo North to qualify for tomorrow's final round. Despite no recent local battle of the bands experience on their resume, Mannapool have impressed many in the past year, but can their technical rock originals carry them to first place by the end of tomorrow?

As previously announced via the official Facebook event page & this SooToday press release, there are plenty of prizes awaiting the top 3 bands plus in other individual categories, so what can be expected on that front? The first place band will receive $1,000 and more, while other great prizes to be announced await the bands on the podium. Individual prizes will include recording time with Tidal Records for the best original song, a Bomb Energy Drink package for the most energetic band, individual instrument packages from Case's Music for the best guitarist, bassist, and drummer, a brand new microphone from Right Hook Mics for best vocal performance, and a Budweiser Marshall amplifier beer fridge for the fan favourite band, while the most enthusiastic fan will win a $100 Rad Zone gift certificate. These and more will be handed out TOMORROW, with each prize winner also getting a formal certificate for their win (as seen here), so keep this all in mind!

Also, don't discount the possibility of a tie, given what all four bands bring to the table, and that we have seen ties in the final results of local battles before, most recently at The Grand Theatre in 2012. The chances are unlikely, but if we see a deadlock, the tied bands will play for an extra 10 minutes and be re-scored by the judges, so there would be a resolution!

It should also be noted that if The Bear Hunters or Gnaeus win tomorrow's final round, they'll become the first band to win 2 local battles of the bands since Bring The Fallen (who won 3 of 4 entered in 2009 & 2010), but they have very tough competition ahead, and nothing is certain. As this is the final round, admission will be $10 for general attendees ($5 for semifinal competitors that aren't in the finals), but if you already have a $15 pass for the whole month and attended at least two of the semifinals, you've saved money! Like in past weeks, everything will start at 8:00 PM tomorrow, and yes, this is ALL AGES! For all public and current details on the finals, visit the above links! I have been priviliged to take part in this month's battle of the bands, and I can't wait for tomorrow's final round, especially as I have no idea who will win and I'm very curious to find out! Me, Rob, and Dustin have had a blast this month with such quality music, and things will end with a bang, I'm sure!

Will The Apocalypse Afterparty's creativity and stage presence carry them to the top prize? Can The Bear Hunters lock up their second battle of the bands win with their ferocious death metal? Will Gnaeus overcome their wild card placement to claim their second battle victory in three weeks? Or can Mannapool's talented progressive rock originals conquer the competition tomorrow night? We'll find out TOMORROW, but as one last message to all 16 of the finalists: Bring your A-game! Leave it all on the stage, and come ready to rock, impress, and stake your claim! Best of luck to all of you, and may the best band win! Thanks everyone, and we'll see you there!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

YouTube Channel Profile Series: MrFortierg & SueInside1's Channels

It's now time for our monthly YouTube Channel Profile Series, as we're once again looking at randomly selected YouTube channels featuring at least a 50% ratio of local metal, hard rock, or punk-relevant videos among it's present content, in order to profile them for readers who might want to check them out! This month, we had planned to look at 3 channels due to each only having one distinct video type, but on further observation, the first that we chose had two distinct video types, so we'll only look at 2 channels today, with the planned 3rd channel (kennybekendam featuring 2 Treble Charger videos) will now lead off next month's profile. More on that in a bit, but now, here's what you should know!
MrFortierg's Channel (http://www.youtube.com/mrfortierg)

Owner: Guy Fortier, owner of The Lavigne Tavern in Lavigne, Ontario

Channel Timeline: Launched on November 17th, 2009; Videos uploaded from March-August 2010

Channel Summary: Guy's channel is devoted to live concert videos from concerts at The Lavigne Tavern (outside of Sturgeon Falls) in 2010, with five of his nine videos coming from a concert there by local/Toronto Celtic punk quartet Dustin Jones & The Rising Tide on April 24th. The other four videos are of other artists that played there in mid-2010, though none are local acts.

Why You Should Watch: You should give Guy's videos a look for some entertaining videos of The Rising Tide from some of their earlier concerts from before the release of "Whiskey Will Be Our Sun", and while the quality on these videos is mixed (with muddy visuals and inconsistent audio), they capture Dustin & company's entertaining Celtic punk well! Also, give Guy's other videos a look to see other acts playing there that have talent in their own right! Note however that this channel hasn't been visibly updated in over 4 years, in case that changes your mind on subscribing.

Our Recommended Videos to Check Out:

rising tide 011.avi: Guy's videos of Dustin Jones & The Rising Tide's Lavigne concert in April 2010 include four of the band (then featuring Frank McCormick on drums) playing songs together, including their songs "Rising Tide" & "Molly Malloy" (as embedded below), as well as covers of Ben E. King's "Stand By Me" (with Sheldon Jaaskelainen on lead vocals & banjo) and The Pogues' "Streams of Whiskey". Though the quality is mixed, you can make out strong performances of these originals and covers from Dustin and crew, and it's nice to see fans dancing up front!

risingtide 016.avi: The most viewed video of Sheldon playing an energetic fiddle solo, complete with a jump up to the bar counter during it! Nice rousing performance that definitely seemed to please fans in attendance, and if you know Sheldon, you'll know that he's fiddling at his best!

SueInside1's Channel (http://www.youtube.com/sueinside1)

Owner: A member of defunct local/Oil Springs metal band Sue Inside, identity unclear, though the channel is credited to the band as a whole.

Channel Timeline: Launched on April 5th, 2012; Only video uploaded three days later

Channel Summary: Likely the intended official YouTube channel for Sue Inside (and possibly in place of frontman Shane Lipsit-Fraser's own channel), the only upload here is of the music video for "Caligula (Extra Cheese)", which marked the band's last major public activity before they fell inactive. Featuring their expanded Oil Springs-era lineup (with Shane and drummer Jeff Vogel joined by bassist/clean vocalist Adam Veen), the video is well shot and edited in black & white, and it captures one of Sue Inside's best studio originals with a catchy riff and great vocals from both Shane and Adam. It's a shame that Sue Inside aren't active at present to keep up this strong work!


I hope you guys liked this month's YouTube Channel Profiles! As previously mentioned, we'll now lead off next month's installment of this profile with kennybekendam's channel (featuring 2 Treble Charger concert videos), but to round things out for a full profile, we'll look at Jon Livingstone's channel (featuring three drum performances by ex-Pillory drummer Bret Shuttleworth) and Jurgenss88 (featuring two Woods of Ypres songs), so watch for all of them on or around April 22nd! That's all for today, but stay tuned for more news and notes this week! Thanks everyone!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

LOCAL CONCERT ALERT (Tantrym Tyme), The Newest Tuned Episode, Haggith's Next CD, And More!!

After a few days of just battle of the bands recaps and concert previews, we still have a little of each for today's post, including a SHORT NOTICE LOCAL CONCERT ALERT for TOMORROW, but this is more of a regular news post, with an upcoming local album and some assorted updates rounding things out. Now, here's what you should know!

Young Sault Michigan metal trio Tantrym Tyme are apparently playing at The Elks Lodge in Sault Michigan TOMORROW AFTERNOON! Apologies for the short notice, the band only announced the show on their Facebook page yesterday, and only clarified the Sunday scheduling today. Barring possible unannounced gigs, Tantrym Tyme were last seen playing at a Soo Eagles hockey game last month (which completely slipped us by, our apologies!), and while a Sunday afternoon show at The Elks Lodge may seem atypical for a local metal band, remember that the former Abstract often play unique all ages venues, and they rocked this lodge on a Sunday in January too. Tantrym Tyme's skill and sound have steadily improved over the years, and though the hair is shorter, they'll be sure to deliver some solid music this weekend!

This show (at 1111 East Portage Avenue) will start at 3:00 PM, and there's neither an announced cover charge or age limit. See above for more details, and here's Tantrym Time live in 2012!

Next up, here's our latest look at Local2's video coverage of the VM Radio Battle of the Bands at The Canadian Nightclub, via their newest episode of the popular webseries Tuned with Donna Hopper! Following the format of last week's episode, the first segment features a recap of week #2's action and forecasts of what's to come via judges Rob Speers and myself (Dustin Jones was absent again due to Rising Tide tour commitments), and this judges segment will be featured in next week's Tuned episode as well, so keep an eye out then for them! The second half switches to Wednesday's last semifinal in the month-long battle, and it features performance footage and introductions from all four of this week's bands (Mike Haggith & The Din, Project 421, winners The Apocalype Afterparty, and wild card finalists Gnaeus), though X is missing from The Apocalypse Afterparty's introduction.

More performance footage of them caps off the episode, and it's another strong, entertaining look back at week #3! The finals this coming Wednesday (also featuring The Bear Hunters & Mannapool) should be excellent, so be sure to join us then for all of the action as all of the prizes are handed out! Check out the newest Tuned episode above, and remember, their video host doesn't allow external embedding, hence why we can't feature it here.

Also today, here's the latest from one of this battle's competing bands, night #2 runners-up Haggith, who have recently completed work on their new album "Apocalypse II"! The long awaited sequel to 2012's "Apocalypse", it took two years, a band breakup, and two bassist departures for this to be completed, and in advance of the official paid release of the album, you can stream the whole thing on their YouTube channel! The last songs from the planned album went up there yesterday, including the linked "Home (Parts 5, 6, and 7)" as one upload, the album's own title track "Apocalypse II", and the metal track "Hands of Death" that has been a mainstay at recent concerts. In terms of lineup variances, bassist Jordan Leach plays on all of these songs (and co-wrote "Apocalypse II"), synthesizer & keyboard parts are included on all but "Hands of Death", Curtis McKenzie is not featured at all on "Apocalypse II", and Daniel Horton's Project 421 bandmate Frank McGillivray guests on the "Home" songs.

As we haven't even reviewed the first "Apocalypse" yet, and with our review of Telephone & Address' "Rust Orchid" likely coming in the next week or so, I can't say yet when we'll look at this album, but there's lots of varied material from this talented hard rock quartet to check out, so definitely do so above! We'll let you know when CDs and sale copies are released, so stay tuned for updates, and here's "Hands of Death"!

Finally for today, here's three assorted shorter items from the last while, and as usual, these are in alphabetical order by artist name:

  • If you were wondering who was drumming for Dustin Jones & The Rising Tide during their local shows this weekend, then we can confirm via personal Facebook posts that Late Shift bassist Clint Wilson filled in with The Tide for their Sault-area shows at LopLops and Searchmont, like he did at some dates last year. No word yet on if Mikey Hawdon is still their official drummer or not though. Hopefully this weekend's gigs went well!
  • This is honestly very overdue, but we've added local event planners & organizers Maxx Entertainment to our "Other Sault Ontario Metal Links" on the site! Ran by That's Chester & Stiffler's Mom frontman Greg Simpson, Maxx Entertainment have been instrumental in local concert events like Toystock along with helping out at the annual Ride For Sight, this month's VM Radio Battle of the Bands, and more, so check them out above for info on them!
  • Local singer Michaila Ward is looking to start a band (preferably with all female members), and while she didn't specify intended genres, she does like some heavy/alternative bands on Facebook. If you're interested in trying out, message her at this link or via her Musicians Wanted Facebook group post on March 6th!

That's all for today, but stay tuned for this month's YouTube Channel Profiles tomorrow! Thanks everyone!

Friday, March 20, 2015

The Rest Of This Weekend's Hard Rock & Punk Concert Previews!!

Today, we're capping off an unusually busy weekend of hard rock, metal, and punk concerts with our second preview post, including shows taking place tomorrow and over both TONIGHT and tomorrow in Sault Ontario! Without any further adieu, here's the remaining concert previews, barring any short notice announcements!

We'll start today's previews at The Rednecks Saloon, where local hard rock quartet Beaumont Avenue will return for the first time in over three months TONIGHT & TOMORROW NIGHT! The former Suicide Kings have timed these shows for the March Break holiday, but as drummer Ben Boudreau can't make it home from Hamilton for the weekend, the guys have enlisted bassist Mitch Sirie's Bear Hunters bandmate Johnny Belanger to fill in for what they were calling "Fauxmont Avenue" for the weekend. Johnny has talent in multiple rock genres, and he should fit in well for these shows! In any event, it's great to see the guys back at the former Nicolet Tavern this weekend, so don't miss out TONIGHT & TOMORROW! Admisison should be free for these 19+ shows, and 10:00 PM start times are likely. For more details, visit the official Facebook event page, and here's Beaumont Avenue live at Rotaryfest last year!

Next up, fans will see local hard rock solo musician Tym Morrison continue his regular weekly run of concerts at The Harp Bar & Grill TONIGHT & TOMORROW NIGHT! Fresh off of a full double booking at the former Madison's Pub last weekend (it looks like they didn't broadcast the UFC last Saturday, my apologies!), Tym should be in solid form this weekend to deliver his acoustic hard rock covers all night as his successful relationship with The Harp continues in it's second year! I'll also note that recent updates to the calendar on his website do not reference Friday shows as still being jam nights that he hosts, instead as just regular solo shows, but I can't confirm yet whether the jam nights have ended or not. Either way, Tym will be on at 10:00 PM TONIGHT & TOMORROW, there's no announced cover, and you must be 19 to attend. For more details, click here, and here he is live a few years back!

Moving to Saturday-only concerts, local Celtic/punk quartet Dustin Jones & The Rising Tide will wrap up a busy March tour run with a headlining date TOMORROW at... the Searchmont Resort? This isn't that abnormal if you're familiar with The Tide, as they have headlined there before, and this is a special event taking place at the regional ski resort tomorrow, that being a slope style skiing contest. That should be fun in it's own right, but there are assorted external activities, including a "Cardboard Classic" race for kids, a roast beef dinner, and the guys playing a special 3:00 PM concert in between it all, so visit Searchmont's Facebook page for complete details! Fresh off of TONIGHT'S Boot Hill Crooners CD release show, Dustin & The Tide should be in great spirits to rock out at Searchmont, so whether you're a skiier or fan, keep their show in mind! This is ALL AGES, and the concert itself has no announced cover charge, but again, see above for more info. Don't miss is, and here's the guys live in Sarnia!

Finally for this weekend (in all likelihood), we'll head to The Rockstar Bar for a pair of out of town bands TOMORROW NIGHT, including the return of Saskatoon hard rock quartet One Bad Son! Local fans may remember seeing this exciting modern rock band from opening for supergroup Crash Karma at the same venue in October 2013, and it's great to have them back in our neck of the woods once again as they tour in support of their new album "Black Buffalo"! Kelowna southern hard rock quartet The Wild will open tomorrow's show in their Sault Ste. Marie debut, and their country-tinged aggressive rock should provide just the right kick to this concert, so prepare for their "wild" originals as well! This show has a special low cover charge of $5 (great deal!), and a 9:00 PM start time advertised, but this is a 19+ event. For more details, visit the official Facebook event page! Sounds like a solid hard rock concert, so keep it in mind for TOMORROW, and here's One Bad Son live in Toronto last year!

That's all for today, but stay tuned for a new news post tomorrow! Thanks everyone!