Dethlehem & more at Stage AE the other night… Review/Photos/Video ☠


This isn’t all an all-out super in-depth review, but I wanted to post that I really enjoyed the show the other night at Stage AE with Ascend the Fallen, The Bloody Seamen, Lady Beast, & Dethlehem.  All of the bands put forth a great effort, and the (giant) crowd was pleased.  I managed to take a ridiculous amount of photos, and some of them even turned out pretty cool.

Professor Richard Smallchange & Harry Valentine

Professor Richard Smallchange (Channeling Lord Bonecrush) & Hairy Valentine

Check out my photos on Photobucket & Facebook here…

If you’re on the Facebook and know the bands (or anyone else) in the photos, please tag ’em!

Ascend the Fallen

Ascend the Fallen

Ascend the Fallen was all over the place… literally.  They’re quite the active bunch up on stage.  They run n’ jump all over the place & had the crowd all riled up.  Those cats can shred.  They were a perfect opener for this gig, getting everyone ready for the things to come.

The Bloody Seamen

The Bloody Seamen

The Bloody Seamen always blow me away.  Their showmanship & dedication to character is unmatched.  My wife (who’s not a metal fan by any means) saw them for the first time the other night & became an instant fan.  Their catchy choruses, funny tales, and ridiculous stage presence will easily shanghai many a fan.  Something about everyone yelling during some of the aforementioned catchy choruses & the melodies have a very Dropkick Murphys/Flogging Molly sort of feel.  I’m sure the fife, accordions & bagpipes don’t hurt there either.  I’m going to have to try to barter with some doubloons to get my hands on some of their bootleg demos or something to hold me off until they have a proper album out for purchase.  Also… where else can you see a guitarist snap all of their strings with a machete at the end of their set, a fire-breathing sea-captain, and a bass player with a really creepy dead eye?  The highlight the other night was watching “Filthy” Cheswick Springdale decided to throw his guitar on the ground & assault it with his combo amp head while it squealed, only yo expertly cut it off when the song ended by unplugging the feedbacking beast.

Gunny

Gunny

Lady Beast

Lady Beast

Lady Beast rocked hard.  One dude on guitar had a Ravelle and made me extremely jealous.  Their singer is one hell of a positive role model for women into metal.  There were more ladies packed in front of the stage for their set than I have ever seen at a predominantly metal show in all my years of going to & playing shows combined.  It doesn’t hurt that she’s got great pipes and the band has a really heavy attack without sacrificing groove or melody.  These cats can play hard.  I’ll be anxiously awaiting their album, and I plan to check out more of their gigs!

Deb

Deb

Overlord Brom

Overlord Brom

Dethlehem

Dethlehem

Of course, I may have biased opinions on Dethlehem.  They are absolutely ridiculous, and no one deserved headline an all-local-acts show at Stage AE more than them.  These guys put a crazy amount of effort into not only the performance… but the song-writing, the shredding, the drumming, the singing, the over-all story arc, the costumes, and the entire production.  Someone needs to interview them & ask about the stuff they do to constantly take their playing & song-writing to the next level.  Trust me, it’s intense.  Sometimes people might look over that due to the theatrics.

Dethlehem

Dethlehem

It was great to be there for the first full show of the new Brutalitus the Bloodbeard, and it was very cool that Professor Dick Smallchange helped narrate and channeled Lord Bonecrush, joining the apparently chronic self-pleasuring barbarian-turned-blacksmith Sean “Hairy” Valentine for an encore.  The troll/ogre being made a eunuch, the birthing & bloody decapitation of said newborn, …both fantastic moments of on-stage debauchery.  The music itself was spectacular… with fretboard acrobatics by Bovice and Hildor, a helmeted Brom for nearly the entire show, Davidicus is truly a wizard of the low-end and keeping things going between songs with the interludes.  Bloodbeard proves himself to be a mighty vocalist, looking forward to his development with the band.

Headbangin' Harry

Headbangin' Hairy

I found a bunch of cool videos of that night online, enjoy!

If you have any links to more photos and/or video, please share!

I’m pretty sure this is illegal. (Driving advice for horn-honking traffic trolls.)


I’m pretty sure this is illegal, but I see it happen all the time.  Can someone of authority weigh in on this?  Opinions are of course welcome, but if you’re going to claim why it’s legal/illegal… you have to give me some kind of backup.

Let me describe the scenario with the help of an illustration thanks to Paint.NET, Google Maps, & a Google image search

This is a dick-move.

This is a dick-move.

We’ll pretend I’m the blue car, behind the white truck, and in front of the little yellow bastard.

The white truck is trying to make a left at the light, only problem being (use your imagination here) a flurry of automobiles in the other 2 oncoming lanes coming forth with less than a car-length in between them, and at a speed well over the posted 25MPH limit.  (Never-mind that here the middle lane switches traffic directions depending on the time of day – that’s a whole different ridiculous issue.)

Of course, the truck is forced to stop in what I would like to consider the middle of the intersection, causing frustration to rise exponentially for each halted vehicle behind the pale horse of immobilization.

As the truck plays the waiting game, and I hone my skills with the Force trying to will a break in traffic to allow him (or her) to turn and more importantly get out of my way… the impatient arrogant bastard behind me decides to honk the horn.

Honking the horn when one is stuck in traffic is the action of a self-absorbed angry little person.  A honk is expected & appropriate if someone cuts you off, someone’s sitting at a green light, or backing into you.  A honk is inappropriate when everyone is stuck, & no one can go anywhere.

Now, I know this indignant troll of a human being wanted me to take the path of the green arrow above… which is a common Pittsburgh driving move.  I’m sure it happens elsewhere too, but it’s quite common around here.  I believe said move is not only illegal, but also quite dangerous.  I know passing on the shoulder is discouraged if not illegal, and doing it in the middle of an intersection isn’t the best idea.

It’s dangerous for the following reasons if you must know, traffic troll:

  • Someone in the inside oncoming lane could also be making a left, not see me coming around the side of the truck, and we plow right into each other.
  • The truck decides he’s (or she’s) had it with waiting to make a turn, and plows ahead in frustration as I move around & try to merge into that lane.
  • Someone from the road on the right may be coming to the intersection to make a legal right on red while it’s obvious that oncoming traffic is at a stand-still.
  • A final sequence, however unlikely… the light changes while I’m going around, and someone comes from the left straight through their way, and smacks into the side of me.

If you think of any other reasons why it’s a bad idea, please let me know.  If you can show me a link where the laws concerning such vehicular interactions reside online (especially for PA), I’d love to pass the link along to the honking trolls out there.

If you’re a traffic troll, I’d like to express to you that all you’re doing is putting the person in front of you in danger, as well as potentially yourself, and adding to the aggravation levels of everyone around you… when they’re already sufficiently aggravated.

This has been brought to you as a public service announcement warning against the dangers of traffic trolls.  I’m sure PennDOT and the State Police would get behind this if they read my blog.

You’re not a traffic troll, are you?

Epic Metal :: It’s not too late to join the quest!


So, the warriors of Dethlehem have dropped a second album, aptly named The Ghorusalem Codex Vol. 2: Of Magick and Tyranny(This would be a follow-up to their 2009 disc, The Ghorusalem Codex Vol 1: Enthroned Upon A Spire.)  If you’re a fan of metal, or a fan of chaos involving things like trolls and dragons and wizards… you need this album.

DETHLEHEM | The Ghorusalem Codex, Vol 2: Of Magick & Tyranny

DETHLEHEM | The Ghorusalem Codex, Vol 2: Of Magick & Tyranny

Listen to this and try to tell me I’m wrong:  Dethlehem “Hypergates of Infinitude”  It’s one of my favorite tracks off of the album.

I’m big a fan of their first album, but this one blows it away in terms of recording, production, and overall album cohesiveness.  The interludes in between songs have become a much better over-all narrative to help guide you along the quest.  (The full story is coming soon to their website.)

Bovice and Hildor are the six-string men-at-arms, and the musicianship here makes me sick.  The guitars are ridiculous, it’s almost too over the top… but with what Dethlehem has going on, it needs to be ridiculous.  I’m talking shredding, sweeps, blazing riffs, and all manner of fretboard insanity.  If I didn’t know these guys, I’d hate them… they make a punk rock power chord chump like me almost too embarrassed to pick up a guitar.  Luckily for the Ernie and the Berts fan(s), I have no shame.

A slight lineup change on this album, Davidicus the Black replaces Galagore… not sure what the official story is, if Gallagore was eaten by a dragon or transformed into a toad by an evil witch or what.  Davidicus is a wizard, and adds a dynamic both in story & in playing style.  You can hear less doubling of guitar parts by the bass, more restraint where called-for musically, and stomping all over the place where appropriate.

Overlord Brom bangs on the drums like nobody’s business, and even my untrained ear can tell there’s all manner of math going on here with time-signature changes.  This is not 4/4 rock n’ roll.  Plus, when he plays live… he starts out with a bucket-like Helmet on his head where it must be impossible to see anything.  (By the way, funniest character voice ever in the narratives.)

Lord Bonecrush has developed what I can only call a battle-hardened confidence in his vocals.  While they were strong on Vol. 1, on Vol. 2 they’ve progressed to a point where any shred of vocal uncertainty is gone.  The vocals are honed sharp like any good weapon should be before going into battle… yet there’s a double-edge… clean for slicing backed up with growling with a ferocity akin to aurally ripping you asunder.  The backing vocals also stand out a little clearer on their own on this one… not sure who’s where… but it’s all done sparingly, tastefully, and appropriately.

While not a technical review by any means, I hope to have conveyed the overall feel of the album, and to have piqued your curiosity.

These guys put on an incredible live show… I suggest you buy the album to learn their songs, and then go see them when they come to plunder and pillage a venue near you.  I’m not sure if you can fully appreciate the epic-ness through just a recording or video.  They’re on tour now if you can catch them!

(In the interest of full disclosure, this may not be a completely objective review… I do know the guys, and they awesomely thanked me in the liner-notes of this disc…  But I’d like to think that those who know me know I wouldn’t push crappy music on anyone.)