Monday, October 29, 2007


I must say that I was a bit disappointed, and definitely more bored than I ever expected to be at a metal show. Now, I'll be honest, I don't know much about Type O Negative...ok, very little, other than the singer's name is Peter Steele and he is an absolute beast of a man.. He is not your typcial frail, girl-ish 150 pounds soaken wet pansy rock star. He is a towering 6'7" brick wall of a giant. The other fun fact that I know about them is that Steele posed for Playgirl back in the day (uhh, have fun with the pic...).

Either way, I wanted to check it out as I have tried to immerse myself in metal in the last year and a half or so. So when Type O finally took that Bliue Cats stage, I was ready for some real metal. Lordi, although quite entertaining from a visual perspective, were pretty cheesy and over the top, with Darkness type melodies on top or Tenacious D rock-n-roll worshipping lyrics on top of 80s-esque Ratt riffs (their current single is entitled "Hard Rock Hallelujah") I was both let down and in awe at the same time of Lordi. Ok, ok...I'll say it. They are a poor man's version of Conan O'Brien's "If They Mated" if KISS and GWAR somehow mated and made little shock-rock monster-costumed bastard metalheads- from Finland.

When Steele and company came on, I was prepared for what was sure to be a heavy, bombastic fusion of metal, droning chanted tunes and sheer loudness. I was right. What I left out of my preparations, and apparently they did too, was the enjoyability level of the music. Again, I went in not knowing much (if anything), so I guess I can't be all that disappointed, but I certainly let down. Remember the band Rammstein (you know, that German industrial band from the mid-90s that sang "Du Hast")? Well, take their sound, but subtract the industrial intrumentation, amplify what I equate to and imagine that the Nazi army sounded like if they sang when they were marching as they escorted millions on their long walk to Doomsday, and add in a crowd of 600 of some of K-town's roughest rockers (clad in, what else, all black), and you've got Type O Negative. Yeah, I made it through about 6 songs...then it was bedtime for this johnny-come-lately. If you are a big Type O fan, then I guess you had the time of your life. (I have since been listening to some of their albums, so as to not totally dismiss them without a proper sit down with them.)

The one highlight of the evening, other than the booze, was local up and comers Generation of Vipers. Their opening spot served as their release party for their new albume, Dead Circle. I haven't heard the new album yet, but I hear that it blows away their first album! The Vipes debuted a couple of new tunes during the show for the more than modest and attentive crowd. Vocalist/lead guitarist/aux percussionist (he played a set of free-standing toms at the end) Josh Holt brings absolute violence and anger in his voice as he folds his head backwards on a hinging jawline and lets out a growl you will not believe...especially if you have ever heard him speak in real-life conversation. The Vipers songs are not just adventurous, but are straight up epics. Most songs are longer than conventional "metal" songs, which have a history of being on the longer side, but these epics take the listener/onlooker/prisoner on a trip all over the world, and then deep down below.
You have to hear it to believe it- trust me. Generation of Vipers are not your typical metal band. You can't really just describe them as metal. They describe themselves as Metal / Ambient / Experimental on their Myspace page. But I think they should call it amazing. I wouldn't suggest taking a few hits of some blotter and seeing or listening to them. If you do, don't call me for help. I won't know what to tell you. What I do know to tell you though is this: Do your self a favor and pick up Generation of Vipers' Grace and the newly released Dead Circle here from their own label/imprint Red Witch Recordings.

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