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The Bowery Ballroom Celebrates Its 11th Anniversary with a Screamo/ Metalcore Throwdown

June 4th, 2009

Sky Eats Airplane/In Fear and Faith/Eyes Set to Kill/the Word Alive – The Bowery Ballroom – June 3, 2009

Eyes Set to Kill

Eyes Set to Kill

Last night, on its 11th anniversary, The Bowery Ballroom hosted one of its hardest lineups to date: four heavy-hitting screamo/metalcore bands, each with its own distinct sound (and, most likely, flatiron). Opener the Word Alive—a band originally started by Craig Mabbitt, of Bless the Fall and Escape the Fate notoriety—was the most melodic of the night. Standout songs included “Battle Royale” and the technical, breakdown-heavy “Casanova Rodeo.”

Eyes Set to Kill, featuring a front woman and a female bass player—Alexia and Anissa Rodriguez, respectively—took the stage second. In a night heavy on the testosterone, it was a welcome change seeing these two ladies hold their own with the guys and hearing Alexia’s voice audibly and through her lyrics. In Fear and Faith, the former band of the Word Alive’s current singer, Tyler “Telle” Smith, followed. Dual lead vocalists (one who sings and one who screams) added an extra dynamic to the band’s sound and extra fury to their live show. Synchronized thrashings and a screamo cover of Coolio’s “Gangsta’s Paradise” made this set memorable.

Headliners Sky Eats Airplane, most recently in headlines for covering Limp Bizkit’s “Nookie,” came off as the elder statesmen of the lineup, playing a perfectly executed set of electronica-infused metalcore. Songs like the closer, “The Artificial,” which perfectly melds intensity and melody with synth interludes, demonstrated the band’s keen understanding of how to take a sound and make it their own. Overall, this was a wonderful showcase of up-and-coming talent that will hopefully bring back a new set of fans to the venue. —Kirsten Housel

Photos courtesy of Kirsten Housel