Mountainous Jams: Corky Laing, Sourvein & Behold! The Monolith perform at 5 Star Bar

By Lisa Burke
(photos by Matt Nielson)

Corky Laing

June 22nd 2017, 5 Star Bar, Los Angeles CA: Passion in rock n’ roll and heavy metal still exists and when it’s the primary reason for getting out of bed in the morning to struggle or succeed with life on the road, you should do your part and pay attention because this is what dedicated musicians do and anything less is more often than not set to fail. On Thursday June 22nd, I visited the 5 Star Bar in downtown Los Angeles for a very well rounded line-up, all with skills and talent to back it up. Headlining this show was Mountain drummer Corky Laing and his gang and the set list was primarily Mountain classics. Also on the bill were Sourvein, Behold The Monolith, and The Stoning. The irony here is that 5 Star Bar is a dive bar with a small stage and not the most amazing sound system you’ve ever encountered, and these bands rely on sound quality as much as anything. If you go in expecting great sound you just set yourself up for disappointment, but if you go in expecting it to sound as good as it can with professional musicians and a professional sound guy who compensates for any slack in the system by cranking up the volume to a level where there is not much room for it to be bad, if that makes any sense, then you will have a good time. Continue reading “Mountainous Jams: Corky Laing, Sourvein & Behold! The Monolith perform at 5 Star Bar”

Altar of Extreme Metal: Morbid Angel, Suffocation, Revocation & Withered perform in Pomona

By Andrew Bansal
(photos by C. Jones)

Steve Tucker – Morbid Angel

June 17th 2017, Glass House, Pomona CA: In 2015, death metal legends Morbid Angel decided to revisit an old chapter of their career, bringing vocalist/bassist Steve Tucker back to the helm and parting ways with David Vincent. In 2017, they also brought in two new members, Scott Fuller on drums and Dan Vadim Von on guitar, and set foot on a North American headline tour to present this new incarnation to fans across the continent. With Suffocation, Revocation and Withered as support acts, they made it a lineup hardly any death metal fans could afford to miss. Last Saturday, the tour arrived in Pomona, California, to turn the Glass House into extreme metal valhalla. Continue reading “Altar of Extreme Metal: Morbid Angel, Suffocation, Revocation & Withered perform in Pomona”

A Spectacular Gateway into Metal: Babymetal plays Sold-Out Hollywood Palladium show

By Andrew Bansal
(photos by Brad Worsham)


June 16th 2017, The Palladium, Hollywood CA: Japanese novelty act Babymetal has gained much fame and notoriety in their seven-year existence thus far. Combining the worlds of heavy metal and the Japanese “idol” genre, Babymetal has its fair share of fans and critics. Three teenage girls singing and dancing in front of a backing band that plays metal is perhaps not everyone’s idea of entertainment. But love them or hate them, their rapid rise in popularity in the American live entertainment market is undeniable, and from playing their first ever U.S. show at the Fonda Theatre in Hollywood in 2014 to now, they have garnered a large fan-following. Prior to joining up as a support act for a handful of dates on Korn’s stadium summer tour, Babymetal returned to Hollywood for a headline show of their own, last Friday June 16th, with Hellyeah as opening act. The iconic, historic 3700-capacity ballroom was completely sold out, and while fans’ excitement was palpable, first-timers entered the event with curiosity and caution. Continue reading “A Spectacular Gateway into Metal: Babymetal plays Sold-Out Hollywood Palladium show”

Dream Odyssey: Mono & Low begin co-headline mini-tour in Los Angeles

By Andrew Bansal
(photos by C. Jones)

June 12th 2017, Globe Theatre, Los Angeles CA: Two longstanding bands that have both carved out their unique identities in the psychedelic rock realm yet hail from vastly different parts of the world, Japanese group Mono and Duluth, Minnesota outfit Low joined forces for a co-headline mini-tour, and began their journey up the US West Coast with the first show last Monday June 12th at the Globe Theatre in downtown Los Angeles. The combination of Mono’s mesmerizing instrumental rock and Low’s dreamy, minimalist tunes, was one not to be missed, specially at a venue LA rock/metal concertgoers are not used to visiting. The queue of ticket holders waiting for the theatre doors to open was long, and the air was abuzz with the anticipation of a great evening. Continue reading “Dream Odyssey: Mono & Low begin co-headline mini-tour in Los Angeles”

Bestial Invasion: Destruction, Warbringer & Jungle Rot crush The Regent

By Andrew Bansal

June 11th 2017, The Regent, Los Angeles CA: German thrash veterans Destruction returned to North America this May-June for a headline tour in support of their 2016 album ‘Under Attack’, along with opening acts Warbringer, Jungle Rot and Hellbender. The final show of this tour was in Los Angeles last night, but instead of the famous club on the Sunset Strip where Destruction invariably played for the past several years, this one was at the Regent downtown, and beyond providing a much-needed change of venue for people who may have become far too used to seeing the band at the same club over and over, it made sense to host Destruction at a larger-capacity LA venue, because their shows on the Strip were always hugely oversold. Destruction’s fan-following in the Los Angeles area is absolutely unquestionable, and far bigger than any other city in the US, and on this Sunday night, the band’s diehard fans packed the Regent in anticipation of a good old-fashioned thrashing. Continue reading “Bestial Invasion: Destruction, Warbringer & Jungle Rot crush The Regent”

Triumph of Death: Vader makes successful return to Orange County

By Jason Williams
(photos by Karina Diane)

June 5th 2017, Malone’s, Santa Ana CA: As metalheads, we’ve all had our special moments and revelations, with the music that we hold dear to our hearts. Whether it was the first time you heard Megadeth, saw your first Slayer concert, these are pinpoint memories you will never forget. One of those in my life was in 2002. Downtown Chicago had an unforgettable metal record store, Dark Haven. Newly introduced to extreme music, I found an album from a band called Vader. ‘Revelations’ was just released, and putting the album on at random, ‘Wolftribe’ was the very first song I heard, and a fierce spark within me exploded. The sheer drumming precision and glowing power of this profound death metal sound, accompanying a commanding vocal attack that sent troops to fight mystic creatures, as well as a whammy bar solo style I thought only Slayer could perform, this took me by storm. 15 years later, and 12 times seeing Vader over that time span, this show at Malone’s in Santa Ana CA was a glorious return for the band, as this was part of their first North American tour in four years. The Polish death metal masters brought forth a diverse and strong touring package alongside, and even a summer Monday would not stop the rabid and eager fans from attending. Continue reading “Triumph of Death: Vader makes successful return to Orange County”