Korpiklaani’s “Ukon Wacka” Tour Visits Hollywood

By Andrew Bansal

Dec. 7th 2011, Key Club, Hollywood CA: Having missed their previous LA show in early 2010, I was pretty excited when I found out that finnish folk metal band Korpiklaani was coming back for a North American tour to promote their latest album “Ukon Wacka”, along with support from Arkona, Polkadot Cadaver and Forged In Flame. I wasn’t familiar with these support bands at all, but heard a lot of great things about Arkona in the past few days, from people who were planning to go to this show. In fact, judging from the pre-show talk, I wouldn’t be wrong in saying that the number of people here for Arkona was just about equal to the Korpiklaani fans. But more than anything, I was eager to see what it’s like to be part of a Korpiklaani show, and how they would sound live. Continue reading “Korpiklaani’s “Ukon Wacka” Tour Visits Hollywood”

Skeletonwitch Slays San Diego

By Andrew Bansal

Dec. 6th 2011, Ruby Room, San Diego CA: Currently on a North American tour with Chimaira, Unearth and Molotov Solution, Skeletonwitch added a headline show on one of their off days, and as a result rolled in to the Ruby Room in San Diego last night. This show also featured two great LA area bands Exmortus and Witchaven, along with local support from Downspell. Skeletonwitch’s shows are awesome enough to make me go anywhere my wallet would allow me to. The 5-dollar cover here last night, a distance of a mere 120 miles from my house to the venue, and the prospect of seeing them with two killer support bands made it even easier for me to do it this time.  Continue reading “Skeletonwitch Slays San Diego”

Mournful Congregation’s Funeral Doom Invades Five Star Bar

By Andrew Bansal

Dec. 5th 2011, Five Star Bar, Los Angeles CA: After the relentless, apocalyptic extreme metal I got treated to at this venue two nights ago, I was back here, this time for a doom metal show featuring another Australian band Mournful Congregation, along with Anhedonist and Aldebaran who are the support bands on the Aussies’ West Coast tour, and local support from Destroy Judas, Harassor and Pendulus. I was very pleasantly surprised by the sudden influx of Australian underground metal in the US West Coast, and after the brutality of Saturday night, I was very curious to see how this particular show was going to pan out. Continue reading “Mournful Congregation’s Funeral Doom Invades Five Star Bar”

Australia’s Impetuous Ritual & Grave Upheaval Turn Five Star Bar Into Hell

By Andrew Bansal

Dec. 3rd 2011, Five Star Bar, Los Angeles CA: I had never been to this venue before last night, and it was about time I made a visit. After all, it takes a mere 10-minute walk for me to get there. It can’t get any easier than that, unless of course my house becomes a concert venue. The Blvd in Boyle Heights was pretty much my favorite LA venue till it existed, and ever since it closed down, I had been looking for a good, do-it-yourself underground metal venue. Based on last night’s show I can confidently say that I’ve found my answer in the Five Star Bar. The show last night featured Australian extreme metal bands Impetuous Ritual and Grave Upheaval along with support from Portland’s Ritual Necromancy and three local openers. I wasn’t familiar with any of these bands to be honest, but I stepped into this adventure with an open mind. Continue reading “Australia’s Impetuous Ritual & Grave Upheaval Turn Five Star Bar Into Hell”

Fair To Midland Puts On Insane Show At Troubadour

By Andrew Bansal

Dec. 2nd 2011, The Troubadour, West Hollywood CA: After seeing the amazing Russian Circles gig here four nights ago, I was back at the Troubadour for this show, featuring Fair To Midland along with support from Australia’s Dead Letter Circus, and New York-based rock band Aficionado. I saw Fair To Midland for the first time very recently, when they opened for The Damned Things at the House of Blues in Anaheim last August, and they took me by surprise. They had excellent music and an incredible amount of energy, mainly due to frontman Darroh Sudderth. So I was waiting to see them again, specially as a headlining act, and last night ensured that I didn’t have to wait too long. Dead Letter Circus is also a band that came through town recently on the Animals As Leaders tour, but that was a hectic night for me and I ended up missing their set altogether. So, there was enough reason for me to check out this show even though I was still very much tired from the previous night’s Holy Grail show. Continue reading “Fair To Midland Puts On Insane Show At Troubadour”

Holy Grail & Okai Sisters Rock New Years World Event With High-Energy Show

By Andrew Bansal

Dec. 1st 2011, King King, Hollywood CA: Every Holy Grail show is a special occasion for me, but last night’s event at the King King in Hollywood was extra special. It was the Los Angeles chapter of the 39th annual New Years World Rock Festival, and besides LA, the festival is taking place in four other cities around the world, London, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Seoul. There was a donation box to collect money for the Japan disaster benefit. Last night’s event was also televised for Japan’s Fuji TV and will air in Japan in the first week of 2012. So, along with the ever-exciting prospect of a full Holy Grail set, there was the added attraction of being part of a televised concert. I was also looking forward to see the return of the Okai sisters for the first time since they put an end to one of my favorite local bands, The Binges. Continue reading “Holy Grail & Okai Sisters Rock New Years World Event With High-Energy Show”