Tag Archives: Metallica

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At Brooklyn Steel, Not Much Has Changed for Portugal. The Man

February 21st, 2018

Portugal. The Man – Brooklyn Steel – February 20,2018


Somewhere in the middle of last night’s set at Brooklyn Steel, Portugal. The Man frontman John Gourley sang, “We won’t sell you nothing you can’t use” as part of “Modern Jesus,” which just about perfectly summed up a show that had so much coming at those in the sold-out crowd: lasers and other assorted psychedelic imagery, an onstage dance duo, a Grammy-winning song, deftly placed covers, cheeky humor projected on the backdrop and as much guitars, bass, drums, keys and vocals as the room could handle. Portugal. The Man served up quite a bit over the course of the show and yet, for everyone in attendance, there was nothing there that wasn’t put to good use.

By the time they had gotten to “Modern Jesus” so much had already transpired. With both “Don’t Sleep Till Brooklyn” and “Unchained Melody” playing in full over the PA before the band even took the stage, and then a lengthy hard-core opening jam that weaved through Metallica’s “For Whom the Bell Tolls” and Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall,” the opening “Purple Yellow Red and Blue” already felt like an explosive release for the audience. The song’s title used to accurately describe their show’s visual color palette, but Tuesday the display featured lasers of nearly every hue bouncing over the heads of the crowd. Even with the success of an all-timer breakout hit, not much has changed for PTM.

In fact, it was less surprising that they had a Grammy-winning song to anchor the midpoint of the set than the fact that it fit right in with some of their most far-reaching material, transitioning directly with little distinction into “All Your Light,” which, in recent years, has swallowed some of their oldest jams and repurposed them for the big rooms. Alternatively, “So American” and “People Say” both drew a powerful response from the audience and felt just as award-worthy. By the time the band reached the too-soon encore, “Holy Roller” encompassed it all, laser-abetted Floydian-freak-outs and chest-thumping metal meltdowns that still, somehow, perfectly accommodated breakdancing onstage. It’s a formula that keeps working for Portugal. The Man, as Gourley also sings in “Modern Jesus”: “The only faith we have is faith in us.” —A. Stein | @Neddyo     

 

 

 

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Get Loose with StéLouse on Thursday Night at Rough Trade NYC

February 21st, 2018

Denver DJ and producer Ross Ryan grew up playing in rock bands, influenced by the likes of Metallica, Tool and the Prodigy—one of those bands even earned an opening spot on Jane’s Addiction’s 20th-anniversary tour for Nothing’s Shocking and a monetary prize, thanks to winning a Guitar Center contest. Ryan invested his share of the winnings in a laptop and music-production programs and committed himself to learning the ins and outs of electronic music before posting remixes of songs—as StéLouse (pronounced: “stay loose”)—in 2013, followed by his debut EP, the rock-influenced Home (stream it below), a year later. Last spring, he put out an eponymous long-player (stream it below): “StéLouse took the initiative to combine his background in live instrumentation with his passion for all varieties of music to create his new self-titled LP,” according to Your EDM. “A compilation showcasing the producer’s talent and new direction, StéLouse combines elements from his old production with blissful organic sounds and teams with some of the hottest vocalists to create a whole vibe reminiscent of indie meets R&B with some electronic future touches added in.” See StéLouse (above, performing “Plastic” with Madi and Said the Sky) live on Thursday at Rough Trade NYC. No Sleep opens the show.

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Gojira Bring Acclaimed New Album to Terminal 5 on Sunday Night

October 21st, 2016

With the release of their first album, 2001’s Terra Incognita (stream it below), GojiraJoe Duplantier (vocals and guitar), Christian Andreu (guitar), Mario Duplantier (drums) and Jean-Michel Labadie (bass)—earned comparisons to Tool and Pantera, in thanks to their loud mix of death, thrash, groove, progressive and math metal. Over the ensuing years, the band from Bayonne—France, not Jersey—known for environmental themes, has steadily grown in popularity and earned acclaim for high-energy live shows and an impressive recorded catalog of DVDs, demos, videos, EPs and LPs, including this year’s acclaimed Magma (stream it below). “Magma hardly represents the epitome of the avant-garde in today’s metal scene, but in offering a concise anthology of accessible, immediately engaging songs that nonetheless manage to redefine the edge of the commercial envelope, Gojira set the bar for what arena metal could be five years from now, 10 years from now…  whenever the more casual heavy metal demographic finally catches up,” raves PopMatters. “After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was Metallica.” Crisscrossing North American in support of the new album, Gojira (above, performing “Stranded”) close out their tour on Sunday night at Terminal 5. Tesseract and Car Bomb open the show.

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Double Your Pleasure with Two Nights of Megadeth at Terminal 5

March 15th, 2016

Despite a number of lineup changes since forming back in 1983, Megadeth remain one of the world’s premier thrash-metal bands. Original members Dave Mustaine (vocals and guitar) and David Ellefson (bass and vocals) are now joined by Chris Adler (drums) and Kiko Loureiro (guitar and vocals), and their fifteenth studio album, the well-received Dystopia (stream it below), came out in January, winning them plenty of accolades. The Guardian called it “a fired-up and furious return to form…. Dystopia is an absolutely blistering return to the state-of-the-art bombast and refined technicality of past glories.” Currently winding down an East Coast swing, Megadeth (above, doing “Symphony of Destruction” for Guitar Center Sessions) play Terminal 5 tomorrow and on Thursday. Suicidal Tendencies, Children of Bodom and Havok open each show.

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Mac DeMarco Kicks Off New Tour at The Bowery Ballroom

August 18th, 2015

Mac DeMarco – The Bowery Ballroom – August 17, 2015

Mac DeMarco – The Bowery Ballroom – August 17, 2015
The Mac DeMarco phenomenon is peaking. Perhaps a strong indication of his far-reaching mass appeal is his three consecutive sold-out New York City dates this week to begin his new tour, kicking off last night at The Bowery Ballroom. DeMarco’s continuously widening appeal is thanks to the combination of the accessible substance of his music along with the quirky affability of the personality behind it. In harmonious proportion, there is his feel-good songwriting—which recalls and revitalizes the groovy sound and soulful balladry of ’70s bands like Steely Dan and the Modern Lovers—and the oddly beguiling character whose earnest eccentricity makes him curiously relatable. Add to this the gentle, playful voice you love to sing along with and what seems to be an innately effortless musicianship, and you have an artist currently setting his own trend, inviting happy followers to join.

Although DeMarco was a little subdued by an unfortunately timed cold last night, his disarming charm was on display, and it was overwhelmingly clear that everyone in the room was very happy to be there. A little vocal and guitar warm-up to engage the crowd led to the opening song on his just released album, Another One, “The Way You’d Love Her.” DeMarco has a knack for touching on what makes you listen to music in the first place: to feel giddy and open. His verses hook you with steady, easy rhythm and delightful instrumentation and then give way to choruses that are like sunbaths, walking outside for the first time on a glorious day. Eliciting sing-alongs throughout, DeMarco warmed the room with irresistibly catchy hits, like “Salad Days” and “Ode to Viceroy,” before deftly shifting into breezier gems, like “Another One.”

Distinctly good vibes permeated the room, and the set list, drawing from all of his albums, included surprising and exhilarating covers, which included an interlude of Coldplay’s “Yellow” and a raucous encore of Metallica’s “Enter Sandman,” setting off the room into a moshing frenzy. It was like one big musical hangout session. Perhaps some of DeMarco’s appeal is due to the reassuring vibe he puts out to the average dude, who sees that someone is living a life of his own and making simple, good music without pretension or artifice. DeMarco is identifiable to all sorts, and that’s why people adore him. —Charles Steinberg

Photos courtesy of Pip Cowley | pipcowleyshoots.com

(Mac DeMarco plays the Capitol Theatre on 10/10 and the Bearsville Theater on 10/11.)

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Rodrigo y Gabriela Return to Play the Capitol Theatre on Friday

June 17th, 2015

When Rodrigo Sanchez (lead guitar) and Gabriela Quintero (rhythm guitar) met as teenagers in Mexico City, they discovered a mutual musical taste and formed the thrash-metal band Tierra Acida. When that ultimately didn’t pan out (they recorded music that was never released), the duo began to learn different guitar styles, taking a liking to fast, rhythmic acoustic guitars. Finding the Americas stifling, they set out for Europe, landing in Dublin, where Rodrigo y Gabriela honed their fast and lively acoustic sound (incorporating some Zeppelin and Metallica along the way) in pubs and on streets. Then one-time busker Damien Rice asked them to tour with him and things took off from there. Ever since, Rodrigo y Gabriela (above, performing “Soundmaker” for KEXP FM) have been mashing up rock, classical, Latin, world music and heavy metal into their own unique sound over the course of several acclaimed live albums and studio full-lengths. The most recent of which, 9 Dead Alive (stream it below), just came out today. The new tunes eschew some of the pair’s Latin influences in favor of straight-ahead (acoustic) rock. According to AllMusic, “There isn’t a dull moment in these 41 minutes.” And furthermore, “This album evidences an expanded creative reach for the pair, even as it reengages the sharp edges they displayed on earlier recordings.” Catch Rodrigo y Gabriela on Friday night at the Capitol Theatre. Soul-folk duo Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear open.

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Three Nights of Acclaimed Guitar Duo Rodrigo y Gabriela

April 29th, 2014

When Rodrigo Sanchez (lead guitar) and Gabriela Quintero (rhythm guitar) met as teenagers in Mexico City, they discovered a mutual musical taste and formed the thrash-metal band Tierra Acida. When that ultimately didn’t pan out (they recorded music that was never released), the duo began to learn different guitar styles, taking a liking to fast, rhythmic acoustic guitars. Finding the Americas stifling, they set out for Europe, landing in Dublin, where Rodrigo y Gabriela honed their fast and lively acoustic sound (incorporating some Zeppelin and Metallica along the way) in pubs and on streets. Then one-time busker Damien Rice asked them to tour with him and things eventually took off. Ever since, Rodrigo y Gabriela (above, performing “Somnium” and “Torito”) have been mashing up rock, classical, Latin, world music and heavy metal into their own unique sound over the course of several acclaimed live albums and studio full-lengths. The most recent of which, 9 Dead Alive (stream it below), just came out today. The new tunes eschew some of the pair’s Latin influences in favor of straight-ahead (acoustic) rock. According to AllMusic, “There isn’t a dull moment in these 41 minutes.” And furthermore, “This album evidences an expanded creative reach for the pair, even as it reengages the sharp edges they displayed on earlier recordings.” Rodrigo y Gabriela celebrate the new release with three nights at the Beacon Theatre, Thursday, Friday (sold out) and Saturday.

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Les Racquet and Dangermuffin Live Up to Their Advanced Billing

January 17th, 2014

Les Racquet/Dangermuffin – Mercury Lounge – January 16, 2014


It can be hard to separate your personal journey from a concert. Last night’s late double bill at Mercury Lounge was a perfect example: A week ago someone in the Merc bathroom pointed to a Dangermuffin flier, saying, “They’re good,” when I realized that they were on the bill with Les Racquet, whom my brother had previously recommended to me, saying, “They’re good!” I took it as a sign. Dangermuffin, out of South Carolina, immediately brought to mind the kind of mixed-genre, loose fitting bands that proliferated the mid-’90s that today we call a jam band. It was folkie-Americana with a freer jazz strain running through it. “Homestead” was an early highlight, a well-structured composition that jittered through multiple sections before dropping down for a build-’em-up slide-guitar solo.

The sound had some interesting twists. Operating as a trio without a bass, frontman Dan Lotti had his electro-acoustic guitar mixed so that he simultaneously played the basslines and rhythm guitar while lead guitarist Mike Sivilli took the solos with hints of Jerry Garcia and Dickey Betts clearly shining through. It’s always good to have your suspicions confirmed, and Dangermuffin obliged with a cover of the Grateful Dead’s “Franklin’s Tower” midway through their set, Sivilli playing a couple of slippery noodle solos without meandering or getting too ostentatious. The second half of the set built up steam on a range of bluegrass, blues, country, rock and reggae, often at the same time, and tightened up with sweet harmonies and danceable rhythms. Or as the man said: “They’re good.”

Brooklyn’s Les Racquet opened comfortably with guitarist Patrick Carroll setting up some little loops of sound before the whole band hopped into their tough-to-tackle repertoire. They opened with “Haiku,” which combined a soulful presence with some interesting twists and turns that were at once complicated and endearing. It didn’t take long for the trio—Carroll plus Kenny Murphy on the six-string Modulus bass, Daniel Malone on drums—to find their comfort zone. Songs like “Devil Girl” displayed their well-honed skill set: nice harmonies, delicious melodies and brainteaser changes that brought to mind Frank Zappa. It’s an ambitious repertoire, but they pretty much nailed it. “Daydreams” was a bass-heavy supergroovy rocker highlighting Murphy’s talents—you can’t carry that bass onstage and not take a meaty solo, and he did not disappoint.

Of course, it’s still good to have your suspicions confirmed, and Les Racquet obliged with a cover of Zappa’s “Peaches en Regalia,” Carroll perfectly leading the way through the prog classic. After a couple more draw-you-in songs, including “Obviously,” with Carroll singing about someone who is obviously “bat-shit crazy,” the band announced that Malone would sing a couple of numbers, resulting in a surprising but fantastic pairing of Rush’s “Tom Sawyer” and a loose rendering of Metallica’s “Enter Sandman.” The set ended with a long triple-helix instrumental called “Bruce Lee,” which flexed every muscle in the Les Racquet body, and “Oh Yeah!” the kind of rocking sing-along that every band should have at their disposal to end a show. Or, just as my brother said, “They’re good!”  —A. Stein

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The Wildhearts Return, Come to Brooklyn

May 31st, 2013

It’s not often that a band is compared to both the Beatles and Metallica. But thanks to their heavy metal sound and melodic pop hooks, this has often been the case with the Wildhearts. The English group, now a quartet with Ginger (vocals and guitar), CJ (guitar and vocals), Ritch Battersby (drums) and “Random” John Poole (bass), originally formed in 1989. Making music has never been a problem for these guys: They released eight studio albums over the course of 16 years, the last of which being Chutzpah! (stream it below), and had several Top 20 singles. But, nevertheless, there were always problems along the way—band members getting replaced, fighting with record companies, drugs, depression and multiple hiatuses. The most recent one began in 2010 and lasted until this past December, when, newly regrouped, they played a sold-out show in London. It went so well that they did another four dates across the UK. And that went so well that the Wildhearts  (above, performing “I Wanna Go Where the People Go”) are coming our way to play Music Hall of Williamsburg tomorrow night, doing their “greatest hits and finest moments” from their entire catalog. And as an additional bonus, the Ginger Wildheart Band play Mercury Lounge the next night.

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Catch This Heavy Metal Double Bill Tonight at Terminal 5

January 23rd, 2013

Alternative-metal band Stone Sour was founded more than 20 years ago in Des Moines, Iowa, by frontman Corey Taylor (who was eventually recruited by Slipknot to handle singing duties). And despite making several demos, the group went on hiatus five years later, in 1997. But it didn’t take, and Stone Sour—now Corey Taylor (vocals and piano), Johny Chow (bass), Roy Mayorga (drums), Josh Rand (guitar) and Jim Root (guitar)— reunited in 2002, finally releasing their debut self-titled album. Stone Sour (above, playing “Made of Scars”) have a new LP, their fifth, House of Gold & Bones, Part 2, due out this spring, and they’ve been compared to a cross between Alice in Chains and Metallica.

Initially, Papa Roach dabbled in punk rock and rap, but somewhere along the way, the Northern California group became immersed in hard rock. Last year, the four-piece— Jacoby Shaddix (vocals), Tobin Esperance (bass and vocals), Jerry Horton (guitar and vocals) and Tony Palermo (drums)—released their seventh album, The Connection (stream it below), which finds them deftly mixing their rap-rock roots with their newer metal ways. And even better, you can see a fantastic, heavy-duty double bill when Papa Roach (above, doing “Angels and Insects”) and Stone Sour play Terminal 5 tonight.