Friday, March 18, 2016

Last Month's Poll Results & Our Newest Poll!!

It's now time to close down our most recent poll at the SMS and launch our newest poll, but check out our newest concert post below as well! As you may remember, we posed this question to you guys last month: What was the biggest local metal, hard rock, or punk news story of 2015? Sadly, we only received 9 votes last month, but there is a clear result despite the turnout, so here are the final tallies from the past month!

Gnaeus wins the VM Radio & Speak Easy Battles (2 votes, 23%)
Sabrina Pelchat passes away (1 vote, 11%)
SNFU headlines at The Rockstar Bar in July (1 vote, 11%)
Beaumont Avenue/The Suicide Kings disband in July (1 vote, 11%)
Mike Haggith releases "The Warinside" (1 vote, 11%)
The Danger Cats disband (1 vote, 11%)
Anvil headlines at The Rockstar Bar on April Fools Day (1 vote, 11%)
Other (1 vote, 11%)
The Emergency Festival returns at Rocky DiPietro Field (0 votes)
Garden of Bedlam return for Go Skateboarding Day (0 votes)
Gongshow summer concert series at The Rockstar Bar (0 votes)
Haggith release their final albums & part ways (0 votes)
Mike Case passes away after a long cancer battle (0 votes)
Music Depot closes it's doors (0 votes)
The Northern Vibe Festival debuts in Ophir (0 votes)
The Pixo Control release debut CD "Probably Not" (0 votes)
P.O.D., Hoobastank, and Fuel rock Kewadin Casino (0 votes)
Punk rock bingo debuts at The New American Pub (0 votes)
The Ripcordz & local bands release "Fed Up!" split CD (0 votes)
Rotaryfest's Second Stage returns at Clergue Park (0 votes)
The Sault Downtown Association fights for survival (0 votes)
Saving Abel headline first annual Superior Festival (0 votes)
Shit Liver returns home during Canadian tour (0 votes)
Stereo North debuts (0 votes)
Treble Charger rocks The Machine Shop in February (0 votes)
The Who's Tommy premieres with That's Chester (0 votes)

What do you guys think? Well, given the low vote turnout, it's disappointing that 18 of the 26 choices didn't get any votes, including such moments that I thought would get attention like the returns of Garden of Bedlam, Treble Charger, and Shit Liver, the "Fed Up!" split CD's release, and Haggith's dissolution. It's all in who votes though, and of the six choices that registered a single vote, all are ones that I can see getting the attention in a poll on big news stories! Of course, I can't say for certain what the "Other" voter had in mind. The winner, and only selection to receive two votes, was Gnaeus' victories in last year's two battles of the bands, and while they've been on a live hiatus due to studio commitments and their drummer vacancy (more on that in the near future), their two battle wins and $1,400 in combined prize money sure helped propel their local ascension, and hopefully we hear much more from Gnaeus in 2016! Thanks to everyone for voting!

As for this month's poll, we're winding down our "favourite _____ of 2016" polls by posing this question: What was your favourite local metal, hard rock, or punk concert in the second half of 2015? After originally covering January-June concerts in our poll on the first half of last year, we'll compliment things with shows from July-December, and after the month's voting is up, we'll unite the top vote getters from each for a one final poll on your favourite concert of the year, as usual! Like last summer, I chose 25 shows from 2015's second half to pick from (plus "Other"), and I hope I covered many bases and included most major concerts1 However, like in past installments, we only included shows that had metal, hard rock, and/or punk bands comprising at least half of their lineup. As a result, shows like Toystock, The Emergency Festival, The Northern Vibe Festival, Rotaryfest Stage 1, and Mike Haggith's CD release show are not included, but you can vote for them with "Other".

I also opted against the various 2-3 band shows from late last year that featured combinations of local acts like The Din, Eclipse, The Elements, Project 421, and Stereo North, as they admittedly can blur together, especially when some didn't have a "catch" or a touring headliner to make one stand out compared to the rest. Of course, if your preferred choice isn't included, vote for "Other"! Now, here are your choices in our poll on your favourite concerts of late 2015!

Bands: Gnaeus, The Pixo Control, Caroline Divine, DJ Seith & Conika, Stereo North, Aldous, The Wild Iris, and The Boot Hill Crooners
Venue: Clergue Park
Date: July 18th, 2015
Info: After taking 2014 off due to financial issues, Rotaryfest resurrected the Second Stage as a one day event on July 18th, re-directing it to Clergue Park in the wake of the Downtown Association battle. Featuring a strong, Tidal-influenced lineup of alternative and indie rock favourites, and a strong number of punk and hard rock acts, was the return of Stage 2 your favourite late-2015 show?

Bands: Vesperia, The Bear Hunters, and Ruptured Birth
Venue: The Algonquin Pub
Date: July 23rd, 2015
Info: The seventh installment of last year's Gonqshow concert series saw Toronto death metal quartet Vesperia and Sudbury grinders Ruptured Birth bring some extreme metal to The Algonquin last July, with local favourites The Bear Hunters sandwiched in-between for good measure! Though aims to fund Crimson Shadows as headliners didn't materialize, was this your #1 show of late last year?

Bands: SNFU, Jack Spades, and Destroilet
Venue: The Rockstar Bar
Date: July 24th, 2015
Info: In a show that was just too big for the downstairs pub, the next Gonqshow event moved upstairs to The Rockstar Bar for Vancouver hardcore punk legends SNFU's first local concert in six years, with Chi Pig and company playing their classic album "...And No One Else Wanted to Play" in it's entirety! Featuring strong local support and a huge crowd, did this top 2015's second half to you?

Bands: The Royal Streets and Dustin Jones & The Rising Tide
Venue: The Voyageurs Lodge in Batchewana Bay
Date: August 1st, 2015
Info: Fresh off of their most recent Thessalon gig, local Celtic punk favourites Dustin Jones & The Rising Tide headed north to Batchewana Bay for The Voyageurs Lodge's annual Musicfest, with Waterloo folk band The Royal Streets headlining. Notably plugged in a Sault Star article, the 2015 Musicfest surely got a solid reception, but were you there to agree?

Bands: The Golers, AlgomA, The Bear Hunters, and Shit Liver
Venue: The New American Pub
Date: August 9th, 2015
Info: Two years removed from their mid-2013 shows at the former Roosevelt Hotel, Vancouver thrashers The Golers made their long awaited return to Sault Ontario for a crushing night of metal at The New American Pub last August, with local/St. Catharines' grindcore trio Shit Liver making a late notice homecoming as the night's opening band! Did this all add up to make you cast your vote here?

Bands: Diemonds, The Bear Hunters, and Jack Spades
Venue: The Rednecks Saloon
Date: August 21st, 2015
Info: Already fan favourites from their two prior headlining appearances in the Soo, Toronto hard rock quintet Diemonds made their own return after a couple of years away for a night of hard hitting and energetic originals, with local favourites The Bear Hunters and Jack Spades more than up to the task as openers! Did this Rednecks show earn your vote in this month's poll?

Bands: The Red Rails & Late Shift
Venue: The Rockstar Bar
Date: August 29th, 2015
Info: Helping end August in style was the return of local drummer Steve Brogno's Ottawa alternative trio The Red Rails to the Soo last year, who also played at the debuting Northern Vibe Festival that weekend, but local hard rock quartet Late Shift (featuring two of Steve's former Driving Dave Home bandmates) helped add a little something to their Rockstar Bar show! Did it get your vote though?

Bands: Fuck The Facts, The Bear Hunters, Jack Spades, AlgomA, and Crucify the Whore
Venue: The Oddfellows Hall
Date: September 20th, 2015
Info: The last concert (to date?) from Heavy North Entertainment saw Ottawa grindcore veterans Fuck The Facts rock the local stage once again for a ferocious set, with a talented local lineup in support, with punk, death, doom, and grind for all comers! All ages Oddfellows shows have been missed since then, but did Fuck The Facts and company earn you their vote?

Bands: Evilheart, The Bear Hunters, and Sykotyk Rampage
Venue: The Algonquin Pub
Date: September 21st, 2015
Info: The final concert of the Gonqshow concert series saw Mexican death metal band Evilheart make their local debut to send the Gonqshow out with a bang! Also featuring a brutal set from The Bear Hunters and an increasingly rare support set of "blue Chinese metal crash punk" from local veterans Sykotyk Rampage, did this final Gonqshow event lead all of the other choices this month?

Bands: The Bear Hunters, Nikkfitt, Drew Armstrong & friends, The Elements, and Machines Dream
Venue: The Algonquin Pub
Date: October 3rd, 2015
Info: Machines Dream frontman Craig West was inspired to host a benefit concert for The Soup Kitchen last fall, which ended up featuring a very diverse lineup of local talent, which included a rare set from his own prog-rock quartet, the then-recently reunited Nikkfitt, and a late addition set from Honest Job's Drew Armstrong and friends, with some metal to tie it together! Did it win your vote?

Bands: Sykotyk Rampage, Aggressive Acoustic, and Greg Callaghan
Venue: The Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre
Date: October 24th, 2015
Info: The first of two shows on this night from the same three acts, "the original crash band" Sykotyk Rampage, ex-bassist Brian Cattapan's Sudbury band Aggressive Acoustic, and Northwest's Greg Callaghan joined forces for last year's Soo Zombie Walk action at The Bushplane Museum, before heading to Coch's Corner for the afterparty. Notably an all-acoustic show, was it your top choice?

Bands: The Ripcordz, Jack Spades, and Destroilet
Venue: The Algonquin Pub
Date: October 24th, 2015
Info: After months of anticipation, Montreal hardcore punk veterans The Ripcordz and locals Jack Spades & Destroilet finally released their joint split CD "Fed Up!" with a hard hitting release party at The Algonquin Pub on October 24th, with all three bands unleashing songs from the EP for attending fans! This was obviously a big show last fall, but did it get your vote in this poll?

Bands: Caym, The Elements, and a one-off local punk tribute band
Venue: The Algonquin Pub
Date: October 30th, 2015
Info: The eleventh annual Halloween Party from local promote J.D. Pearce oddly didn't see him fronting a band for the first time in memory, but a tribute band-themed show saw "Metallicaym", The Elements doing Sublime, and members of Jack Spades, Destroilet, The Billy Bastards, and Sykotyk Rampage tackling old school punk rock covers. It was another great night, but do you agree?

Bands: That's Chester
Venue: The Machine Shop at Mill Square
Date: November 4th-5th and 7th-8th, 2015
Info: Sadly marking the final concert appearances by local classic/hard rock cover quintet That's Chester with original guitarist Eugene Orlando prior to his sudden passing, this highly anticipated live musical production of The Who's Tommy brought huge crowds and rave reviews to The Machine Shop, and it was a fitting way to go out, but did the local Tommy production top late 2015 to you?

Bands: K'Man & The 45s & The Elements
Venue: The New American Pub
Date: November 8th, 2015
Info: After two prior Rockstar Bar headlining appearances, Montreal ska punk favourites K-Man & The 45s brought their fun live experience and "Ska-mones" covers to The New American Pub for a third go-around on November 8th, with The Elements bring the funk and hard rock as openers! Fans surely ate this one up, but was K-Man & The 45s the band to win you their vote?

Bands: Hells Bells
Venue: The Rockstar Bar
Date: November 14th, 2015
Info: Touring tribute bands are usually a strong band in terms of concert turnout, and Hells Bells' return after 5 years surely kept that pattern going! One of a few different AC/DC tribute bands to make their way through Sault Ontario in the early 2000s, Hells Bells' brand of high voltage rock n' roll is always a crowd pleaser, but were you at The Rockstar Bar in November to concur with that?

Bands: The Bear Hunters, AlgomA, Project 421, and Sykotyk Rampage
Venue: The Rednecks Saloon
Date: November 20th, 2015
Info: Following the sudden passing of former Chronic Demonic singer Sabrina Pelchat in October, a fundraiser concert was quickly arranged at The Rednecks Saloon three weeks later, featuring a strong lineup of local metal favourites playing in her honour, including The Bear Hunters' most recent live appearance. Sabrina is still missed, but was this your favourite 2015 show from after June 30th?

Bands: The Pixo Control, Gnaeus, and Caroline Divine
Venue: LopLops Lounge
Date: December 12th, 2015
Info: Effectively a double concert vote here, alternative hard rock trio The Pixo Control launched their debut CD "Probably Not" with two concerts on December 12th (one all ages, one 19+) with their friends Gnaeus and Caroline Divine in tow! Notably marking the live debut of current Pixo Control bassist Dustin Goodall, can you vouch for one (or both) of these shows in this poll?

Bands: The Pixo Control, Gnaeus, and DJ Seith & Conika
Venue: The Rockstar Bar
Date: December 18th, 2015
Info: Less than a week removed from the "Probably Not" release concerts, The Pixo Control and Gnaeus joined forces once again to rock out at Tidal Records' skateboarding team's year-end party, with DJ Seith & Conika also in tow, and a skateboarding video to kick off the event. Notable as Gnaeus' last concert with Brendan Garlick on drums, is this your choice over all other shows here?

Bands: Shit Liver & AlgomA
Venue: The New American Pub
Date: December 23rd, 2015
Info: The delayed second installment of Six, Two, Oh.'s punk rock bingo series was also the first with live bands, but it was more accurately metal bingo, with Shit Liver's most recent homecoming and a doom metal blast from AlgomA providing the backdrop for the irreverent bingo action going down at The New A! Was this year-end concert your pick for your favourite July-December concert?

Other: Did we miss a concert that you'd rather vote for? For reference, bands like Bad Back, Ballot Burner, Beaumont Avenue, The Billy Bastards, Broomfiller, Brutally Fatal, Calling All Captains, Caym, Elements, Eternal Prophecy, Griphook, Hard Up, Havadder, Lie Among Us, Long Shot, The Man & His Machine, Michael Mikus, (Mike Haggith &) The Din, Mourning Wood, The Nailheads, Northwest, Out of the Ruins, Redundant, Rotopsy, RPM, The Rude-Offs, Stiffler's Mom, Stinkbox, Telephone & Address, Them, and Tym Morrison rocked local stages in the last half of 2015, plus other shows featuring bands in the above concerts. Was your favourite a show that didn't have a majority of local punk, metal, or hard rock bands, or one that didn't have any? If we forgot or didn;t include your choice, "Other" is for you!

VOTE TODAY!! You guys have until April 18th to cast your votes, so do so A.S.A.P., and remember, the highest voted concerts will match up with the high choices from July's poll on the first half of 2015 for one final showdown next month! Stay tuned for that then, and stay tuned for more news and notes soon! Thanks everyone!

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