Prong Launch ‘No Absolutes’ Tour At The Whisky

By Lisa Burke

prong_whisky

April 21st 2016, The Whisky-A-Go-Go, West Hollywood CA: The Whisky-A-Go-Go is always one of those venues that’s full of good and not so good surprises as far as line ups go, and on Thursday April 21st 2016 it was no different. I arrived for a few of the openers on this special evening with Prong headlining on their ‘No Absolutes’ tour, but I’m going to stick with mentioning only two bands that made a positive impact on me on this night which were Se7en4 and Meade Ave. One of these days I’m going to stage a riot with a picket line outside the Whisky holding a sign that says ‘pay to play, go away’ but until then I’ll just continue to arrive to the venue too early and risk possible moments of ear bleeding and contemplations of suicide.

On to the highlights of the evening, Vegas original band Meade Ave brought some heavy hard rock to the stage in a commendable fashion. The singer had a varied range and at times had a Rob Zombie-esque tone that was nothing short of desirable and fit in well with the decent guitar jams and solidified drum pace. The singer’s stage presence was good even off the stage as he sang one song while circling the non-existent mosh pit, thanks to the joys of wireless microphones. They put on a great live show from start to finish and the variety in the songs helped them achieve success with this audience. There was definitely a manly vibe with some determined players involved, and having only existed for about three years these guys seem to have come along way.

Meade Ave
Meade Ave

Right before the headliner anticipation of Prong was a fun and slightly different take on punk, by Se7en4. These dudes have played around LA for a while now, but I believe this was the first time I was able to catch them, and it was far from a bad time. All the songs had the classic punk elements of hard, fast, loud, and less than two or three minutes in duration, yet there was more than meets the eye with these guys as the guitars ranged into other rock ‘n roll parallel universes and the drumming was speedy and creative. The vocals were punky rap in style with that spazzy edge to keep you on your toes. The bass player added in some tasteful backing vocals, and even with the short duration of songs you got your monies worth from the sheer energy and talent happening. I also happened to notice a couple of very young girls in the audience, perhaps around 8 or 12 years old, who were rocking out and giving the future of punk rock a good name, so that was a plus. One song intro began with a lovely dedication speech for all the dick heads out there which aided in achieving yet another classic punk rock trait. After what seemed like a very short set, they left the stage but got called back for one more, which is always a bonus and confidence boost for the band members. If you enjoy punk and a sprinkling of rock ‘n roll and perhaps a pinch of hardcore, check these dudes out because they’ve got this down to a science.

Se7en4
Se7en4

Now for the moment everyone was waiting patiently for, Prong finally decended the stairs during a Cheech and Chong intro backing track that they abruptly cut once they were on the stage, to then pursue and succeed at providing an amazingly entertaining set full of non-stop fun live songs. They played a great setlist with various favorites being ‘Unconditional’, ‘Snap Your Fingers, Snap Your Neck’, ‘Ultimate Authority’, and the fantastic finale of ‘Power Of the Damager’. I love the catchy lyrics and enticing vocals of Tommy Victor, as he really makes for a great frontman. They actually have the energy and full-filled presence of a five-piece band despite only having a trio to work with. The guitar and bass they were playing were just as attractive as the players holding them, and the grooves were catchy and well constructed. Off of the newest album ‘X-No Absolutes’ the songs get a bit more technically complex while still feeding you catchy simplicity as well, and it just brings an added level that can really rock you out of this world. Their old-school hardcore and punk tendencies are perfectly done and any melodic vocal transitions are beautifully accomplished, and they can give tons of other bands in this world a run for their money in terms of composition and execution. The drumming at times stole the show in a non-egocentric way despite the grand scale appearance of the drum kit, and every cymbal was put to use at the appropriate moment which made me a very happy girl. The fast and furious thrash attacks on the drums also worked well in the appropriate moments. Some of the grooves they throw at you remind me a bit of the stylings of Helmet but again are done to their liking in their own unique way, and I thoroughly enjoyed it all. It was very refreshing actually to see these guys put on the kind of New York metal with industrial undertones that I’m used to and, with a good turn out of a crowd with primarily a younger audience the world seemed headed in the right direction for once. Catch this tour if you still can, and learn how to concur the metal world the right way.

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Prong
Prong

Set List:
01. Ultimate Authority
02. Unconditional
03. Eternal Heat
04. Lost And Found
05. Beg To Differ
06. Rude Awakening
07. Turnover
08. Sense of Ease
09. Cut and Dry
10. Broken Peace
11. Another Worldly Device
12. Whose Fist Is This Anyway?
13. Snap Your Fingers, Snap Your Neck
Encore:
14. For Dear Life
15. Revenge…Best Served Cold
16. Power Of The Damager

Remaining Tour Dates:
5/02: Tampa, FL @ Orpheum
5/03: Orlando, FL @ The Haven
5/04: Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade
5/05: Louisville, KY @ Diamond Pub and Billiards
5/06: Baltimore, MD @ Soundstage
5/07: Amityville, NY @ Revolution Bar & Music Hall
5/08: Worcester, MA @ The Palladium
5/09: Montreal, QC @ Foufones Electriques
5/10: Toronto, ON @ The Garrison
5/11: Rochester, NY @ Montage Music Hall
5/12: Pittsburgh, PA @ Hard Rock Cafe
5/13: Battle Creek, MI @ The Music Factory
5/15: Indianapolis, IN @ The 5th Quarter Lounge
5/16: Cleveland, OH @ Agora Ballroom
5/17: Columbus, OH @ Ace of Cups
5/18: Joliet, IL @ The Tree
5/19: Spring Lake, MN @ POV’s
5/20: Racine, WI @ Rt 20
5/21: Ringle, WI @ Q and Z Expo Center
5/22: Waterloo, IA @ Spicoli’s Grill and the Reverb Rock
5/23: St. Louis, MO @ Fubar
5/24: Merriam, KS @ Aftershock
5/25: Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater
5/27: Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theater
5/28: Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
5/29: Vancouver, BC @ The Venue
5/31: Chico, CA @ Lost on Main
6/01: San Jose, CA @ Rockbar

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