Saturday, September 5, 2015

Concert Review: Sepulchre, Gangrene, Accidentally Murdered, Abscission, Newtdick

    Sebastopol, CA would be invaded by brutal death metal for a night, causing the local hippies to lock themselves in their homes and drink organic wine.

    Yes, the Aubergine After Dark hosted five extreme metal acts last night. The line-up consisted of: Gangrene, Sepulchre, Accidentally Murdered, Abscission and Newtdick. Now, aside from Sepulchre who I have seen twice before, this would be my first time seeing these other acts. I was especially interested in hearing how Newtdick would sound since they have a down right hilarious band name.

    Taking the stage first was Gangrene from Petaluma, CA. This four piece band seemed to have a sludge sound, however, they definitely took on elements of death metal. I could hear a slower Obituary vibe going on at times. Their drummer was very talented and I was impressed by his movement around the kit. The rhythm section for this band was very solid. I do believe in time Gangrene will develop a really strong live presence if they keep working on developing their music.

    Following Gangrene was another Sonoma County based band, Sepulchre. I think Sepulchre’s progressive take on old school death metal helps separate them from the usual bands I have heard. For young musicians, they are better than a good portion of older bands I have either reviewed or seen live. During their set unfortunately, Sepulchre was plagued by poor sound engineering and the venue’s equipment not properly working. The PA system started hissing in between songs while the onstage monitors went out leading to the band not being able to hear themselves. Whoever was in charge of the sound for the venue really dropped the ball. I have had technical difficulties during my radio show that were out of my control, so I can understand what Sepulchre was going through. Even though they had to cut their set short due to the sound problems, the band handle the situation very professionally and never lost their cool.

    The third band, Accidentally Murdered, from Stockton, CA was a decent act. They only had one guitarist, a drummer and two singers. I thought their instrumental set up would not give them a full sound, but they were fairly loud for only having one guitarist. The drummer's blast beat skills were top notch too. Personally, I do not understand the two vocal contrast where one guy sings in a low growl and the other guy does more of a screaming growl. What next, death grind choirs?

    Santa Rosa’s, Abscission, was the fourth band to go on and hammer away at brutal riffs. I am not going to outright say that they were horrible, but they did not do much to captivate and push musical boundaries. They played a very generic style of death metal which at times made their songs sound the exact same. Each musician in the band seemed talented, but they never reached further in themselves to take their music to another level.

    The final act, Newtdick, from Redwood City, CA was the perfect band to close out this extreme music show. Dressed in reptile alien like costumes, the band played a style of metal called slime grind. When told that these guys dressed up I thought they would have some cheesy Halloween store costumes. However, I was completely wrong because the costumes looked as if they were used in a grindhouse science fiction film. Also, the band had some hilarious song titles and did a great job interacting with the crowd. They seemed to be having an enjoyable time playing on stage dressed in costumes. The fans were really digging them, because everyone was snapping pictures throughout the set!

    Overall the entire show was definitely worth attending and it helps support local acts that are doing this for the love of the music...or love of dressing up in costume. Again, support your local scenes if you can. Who knows? You might see a bunch of guys dressed up as newts playing slime grind...

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