BY DEAN BIRKHEIMER | Go Venue Magazine
“It is not light that we need,but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder. We need the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake.” — Frederick Douglas
December 11th of 2018, just two weeks before Christmas, and we all got an early present when we were treated to what was simply put, a great rock-n-roll show. With the same amount of enthusiasm, a child has on Christmas mornings, I couldn’t wait for this show to start. Out first were Mike Craig (Vocals), Jimmy Adams (Drums), Tony “Mojo” Lucero (Guitars), Jeremy Sevens (Bass) and Dirk Mercer (Guitar & vocals). These guys are collectively known as Farewell to Fear. Not acquainted with them, well you soon will be. A real-deal rock and roll band. Things got underway with “Dead Generation” a song that had me coveting long hair to sling around. A real head banger of a track. Next song was from the “New Blood” LP, a very pleasurable metal ballad called “Diamonds”. “Wake Me Up” was next and I believe this to be their song of the night. I know they’re going to hate to hear this, but it had a nice “Sober” by Tool pace to it. This was a perfect 3rd song as it shared the hardness of the initial tune along with the gentleness of the 2nd song. The gathering was now fully into this band and the songs “Your Cure” (which really gave us some great back-ground vocals), “Broken Wings” and “Underneath My Skin”, made sure the crowd stayed engaged. “Voices” was next and it’s off their 2018 LP of the same name. This was gorgeously sung and beautifully performed. A textbook closer. Farewell to Fear are on the road through the end of February, if they are approaching your area, do yourself a kindness and go see this band. You can thank me later.
DEAD GENERATION | DIAMONDS | WAKE ME UP | YOUR CURE | BROKEN WINGS | UNDERNEATH MY SKIN | VOICES
Palisades came out next. This would be my 2nd time shooting this band. I shot them back in February when they were touring with Starset, this was also at the Bourbon Theater. I believe I called them “no nonsense and serious about playing hard and fast”. Well that was nearly 8 months ago and guess what. Nothing has changed. Louis Miceli, Matt Marshall, Xavier Admes, Brandon Elgar and Aaron Rosa can rip a stage apart. They opened their set with “WAR”, ok I did say nothing has changed, that was not entirely true. “War” is off their newest LP Ease the Pain and it is total metal no electronic stuff on this one like there was on Mind Games. The bands 2nd song was “Through Hell,” which is off their self-titled album, it was during this song you could hear the crowd joining in singing “Fxxed up but it’s what I need, Oh God will I find my Peace, I need serenity”. This New Jersey band had hooked us and we didn’t mind at all. We were theirs until they decided to be done with us. They killed us with songs like “Personal”, “Players Haters Ball” and during “Dark”, they had the room lights lowered and demanded we keep cell phone lights off. It wasn’t until the final song “Let Down” that we were able to take a breath. An amazing closing song with a great synchronized jump. Like I said, I’ve seen them twice and plan on seeing them every single time they come anywhere close to me. I would strongly urge you to do the same, and please check out their new album Ease the Pain.
WAR | THROUGH HELL | PERSONAL | BETTER CHEMICAL | PLAYERS HATERS BALL | DARK | MEMORIES | FRAGILE BONES | PUSH | AGGRESSION | INTERLUDE (OSC) | LET DOWN
Since I’ve never been to New Zealand, I can only imagine if you’re young and hardcore you have two choices. Either play Rugby for the All Blacks, or become a rock star. Like a Storm did the later and did it with a didgeridoo no less. (more on that later). When you open a show with such awesomeness that is “Pure Evil”, “Alone” and “Catacombs” you may think, uh-oh, they already gave us all they had, nowhere to go but down now. How mistaken you’d be. After “Enemy”, “Solitary” and “Until the Day I Die” we were treated to a Coolio cover of “Gangstas Paradise”. I’d loved this song in its original form and love it even more now. After “Bitterness”, they band left the stage, but there was no way we’d let them be done. After some wild ovations and cheering they came back out. Like a Storm had much more in store for us. “Complicated” was shadowed by “The Devil Insdie”, then a cool version of “Jellyfish Jam”. After “Chemical Infatuation”, they ended with “Love the Way you Hate Me”. This is where the didgeridoo was highlighted. I can’t imagine what was going on in the collective mind of Like a Storms members, Chris Brooks, Matt Brooks, Kent Brooks and Zach Wood. That tune can never be played without a didgeridoo, it’s a must have. Much like “Voodoo Child” without an electric guitar. It just can’t be done. Check out this video below of “Love the Way You Hate Me” and see if you agree.
When I was child, I was frightened of lighting and thunder, but now I Like A Storm. Hope another Storm rolls through Nebraska soon
PURE EVIL | ALONE | CATACOMBS | WISH YOU HELL | ENEMY | SOLITARY | UNTIL THE DAY I DIE | GANGSTAS PARADISE | BITTERNESS
COMPLICATED | THE DEVIL INSIDE | JELLYFISH JAM | CHEMICAL INFATUATION | LOVE THE WAY YOU HATE ME
LIKE A STORM
FAREWELL TO FEAR
All images © Dean Birkheimer.