Monday, July 23, 2012

My Enemy Complete @ The Meeting Place - 7/21/2012

DC area local alt/electronic ish My Enemy Complete performed live at The Meeting Place for the regular alt/electronic music event Zero. Milla, John, Kate, and I went ($5 cover). Milla knew someone in the band. They had probably the biggest crowd I've seen at Zero/Midnight yet. Better number (about 30 people) of people than Anvil (about 15) LOL.

They came on around 11:40 (thankfully, cause they originally were supposed to go on at which point we were JUST getting on teh metroz... then we got word they were going on at 11:30. We arrived around there AT 11:30. Then they started a little later).

They started without much fanfare, and not much banter or crowd interaction. Even after their last song was over they just...stopped playing pretty much. I heard a few songs before on the internets, but was pretty unfamiliar with their set. The whole band was pretty energetic and into the performances- so that was pretty cool. However I thought their actual songs were a bit...lacking. It was similar to another band- Odin's Court- in that their songs were in and of themselves undecided. A song would start out somewhat heavy or with a good electronic part...then change the tempo/feel to something way more mellow and to me that threw off their whole vibe. I couldn't really get into any of their songs.

Afterwards there was some short chat with the singer and he seemed a bit more focused on the artsy /art side of the music and seemingly doing what he wanted to. So that made a bit more sense when he started talking about time signature changes and other such things. However I find that too much focus on the musical theory aspects can be...not that interesting to people who don't follow the more technical/theory aspects of writing music. I would rather hear something that sounds good.

Whatever the case, it was a different show, interesting. Important to support um (somewhat) heavy/electronic music in this area where not prevalent.



Silent Compromise
15th Night
Strange Boy
Circular Mind
Where are you now
Rite of Passage

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Kiss @ Jiffy Lube Live - 7/20/2012

Went to see Motley Crue and KISS this past week for the first stop on their tour! (Note that is is not counting the performance they gave for veterans the day before at the same venue) Met up w/ Tony and his cousin and his girlfriend there. Tickets were about $34 a piece after fees and the lawn 4 pack (billed as $20 a piece...a deal!... plus fees X__X). Overall not bad for "THE TOUR" of the year (or so Gene would say).

The Journey: it was raining like a mofo as I got about 20 minutes from the venue. I had a trench so I wold be fine...standing in the lawn. Friday, plus rain, plus very popular bands = Sweet Jesus traffic and weather and so so many people. I eventually  reached the parking lot and was designated to park in ...lot B6. I called Tony and he's in lot F...on the other side of the parking lot. So I begin the trek. There was only some drizzle during Crue, thankfully. I was fearing a downpour for most of the set.

The People: a bit of the leathery legions spotted, but it was getting dark, rainy, and I was a bit more occupied with Tony and co. to do too much scouting. There were several people in KISS makeup, with varying degrees of professionalism. Parents with kids, old timers, younger people, people of all ages were attending. Mostly white, but there def were Hispanic, Asian, and black people that I saw too. There was also a group of kinda beefy young not long jorts, high socks, and boots. So I am not sure if they know that Paul Stanley is (mostly) straight ;3 

After another 20 minutes of walking/waiting/cursing that I didn't have a red solo cup we met up and got in line behind some little girls in KISS facepaint. However, before that, some dude came up to me and started ranting about the government, enforcement of tailgating policies, black people, and weed. So yeah, off to a ridiculous start.

I heard a bit of the Treatment as I was walking to the gate. I swear one song sounded like "All the Young Dudes," but according to they totally didn't play that. Whatever. I don't think we missed anything important

We finally get in after another 10 minutes in line and its about 8PM now, when Crue is supposed to be on. I'm getting a bit agitated cause I've zero beers and Motley is supposed to be on and we have to climb a long set of stairs to get on the massive lawn. Thankfully they go on around 8:10 and we have some cold ones, satiated the restroom daemons, and have secured a place on the lawn. Crue comes out like Rammstein, marching at the front of the stage, carrying some sort of flags. Very odd, like they ripped the Teutonic Terrors off straight up. Anyways, they were about as good as last time- Vince half singing and the rest of the band being pretty solid. They coulda been louder, played longer, and had more chicks (I mean they already had those gymnastic type people [like you see at the Renn Faire] flipping upside down, dancers, etc.).  Apart from that, pretty much what I expected. Tommy's Drum solo had him riding the circular track behind him (like a roller coaster) to be upside down while some dubstep played over the PA.And he hit the cymbals a few times.

Kiss went on after a bit longer (they went on close to 10 I think), and had a huge ovation. KISS had fireworks, pyro, steam, smoke, hydraulics, people being lifted into the air, fire breathing, blood spitting, and lights (which sounds lame after everything else). They sounded great, and I was entertained for the most part, apart from dreading they may play 'Beth' (thankfully they did NOT). We were getting pretty rowdy, but the damp weather kinda put a little kink in the fuller enjoyment. As the encore came up, Tony and I decided to hit the can, as I was sure they'd play a few more songs. HOWEVER, to our dismay as we were about at the restroom, we heard strains of "Rock N' Roll All Nite".... meaning that was the end of the set. I checked my clock and I was sure KISS would play til about 11:30... It was about 11:05. So I was pretty disappointed that we didn't get to hear "Strutter" or "Deuce" at least.

Predictably it was a nightmare getting out of there. Thrown off by the early end of set, we tarried for a bit inside the venue, sitting in some lawn chairs. We then were herded off by the staff, and we chatted for a bit near the gate, slowly making our way to our respective vehicles.I just looked at the line of red lights and hung out in my car for about 20 minutes before I even thought about starting it up to get in line. Eventually  headed out for the long drive in the rain. X_X;

Overall a fun show, but damn I still really dislike Jiffy Lube Live/Nissan Pavilion/whatever- the exit process may have been even worse than last time... KISS sounded great and Crue was entertaining. I woulda preferred longer setlists, but for whatever reason they seemed to be cutting it short. I'd go see KISS again, even if it is giving Paul and Gene even more money while ACE gets probably not much...



Motley Crue

Saints of Los Angeles
Wild Side
Shout at the Devil
Same Ol' Situation (S.O.S.)
Looks That Kill
Don't Go Away Mad (Just Go Away)
Sex (Live debut)
Drum Solo
Home Sweet Home
Primal Scream
Dr. Feelgood
Girls, Girls, Girls
Kickstart My Heart


Detroit Rock City
Shout It Out Loud
I Love It Loud
Love Gun (Paul flies out)
Firehouse (Gene breathes fire)
War Machine
Shock Me (with Tommy and Eric jam/mini solos)
Hell or Hallelujah
Bass Solo (Gene spits blood and flies)
God of Thunder
Lick It Up
Black Diamond
Rock and Roll All Nite

Scorpions @Merriweather - 7/12/2012

Went with Milla and met up with Tony to see German Metal legends The Scorpions (with Night Ranger opening for them) at Merriweather Post Pavillion.

For the last show on their US tour (allegedly ever, but ....yeah right) in...Columbia, MD... it seemed a bit subdued/not like a real last show (perhaps should have been at a more...prolific...venue. The hype didn't seem enough. The attendance, compared to Def Leppard a couple days before (which I went to as well) was way better- So I really think it was all a publicity thing and that they'll be back.

 There were a couple t shirt scalpers as we were... hanging out... in the parking lot. We almost got em down to $5 for a shirt (I think even I would have caved to that price). I don't recall seeing any scalpers however. I wonder if I had grabbed a ticket from someone else from Tuesday if I could have gotten Milla a cheap ticket too lol.

Saw a few people there that were at Def Leppard- Cartwheeling girl and her dude, my buddy and me, some creepy old man asking for extra tickets, and the 2 Mexican  metalheads. At one point they came over and we briefly chatted. Seemed like cool guys. Def saw them at like the 1349 or Deicide show.

Night Ranger came on as we were purchasing tix, and they sounded about the same as at M3- way better live than on the album. They changed their setlist a little, but it was mostly the same (Ozzy talk and Crazy Train cover, tho- maybe to appeal to the more metal Scorpions... who have their own share of ballads lol). I wanted to hear "Rumours in the Air," but other than that they had a good set (tho it was not that long since we saw them last...) and a solid opener. Woulda been more enjoyable if we hand't just seen then like 2 months ago!

The Scorpions rolled out exactly at 9pm (or was that Def Leppard?) with their new song and some slowerish songs. I woulda picked some more rockin tunes to start with, but whatever the case, Klaus and the boys sounded GREAT. No complains sonically. At all- it was amazing how great Klaus's voice sounds close to the records. Rudolf and Matthias were shredding and smiling the whole time! I couldn't/didn't really see the screens behind them

The Scorpions  pulled out 'In Trance' and  maybe another song they hadn't played the last time. So that was a treat, but I don't think a lot of people are into older Scorpions here in the US.  OH WELL. At least Klaus called us COLUMBIA instead of DC (*ahem* Bruce *ahem*). I coulda done without the "Kottak attack" (drum solo), as always. But even that begrudingly sounded good. 2 solos ("Coast to Coast", "6 String Sting") seemed a bit...much- I woulda prefered to hear...almost any other song. 'Pictured Life?' 'DYNAMITE?' Anything, guys!

Scorpions coulda picked a more comprehensive setlist, or at least change the order of some songs. A lot of the set list (and even order) was the same as the previous M3 performance they headlined here in the US. Overall a really great show, perhaps a bit bittersweet as well. I felt like I had seen most of this show before (at this year's M3 and a previous M3), due to the setlists... but it still was totally worth it. I had a great time, and The Scorpions sounded better than last time!

Photos: (meh)


Night Ranger

Lay It On Me
Sing Me Away
Touch of Madness
Crazy Train(Ozzy Osbourne cover)
Eddie's Comin' Out Tonight
High Enough (Damn Yankees cover)
Four in the Morning
When You Close Your Eyes
Don't Tell Me You Love Me
Sister Christian
(You Can Still) Rock in Americ


Sting in the Tail
Make It Real
Is There Anybody There?
The Zoo
Coast to Coast
Loving You Sunday Morning
Rhythm of Love
In Trance
Wind of Change
Raised on Rock
Tease Me Please Me
Hit Between the Eyes
Kottak Attack
Six String Sting
Big City Nights
Still Loving You
No One Like You
Rock You Like a Hurricane

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Def Leppard @Merriweather- 7/10/2012

Left work early and met my buddy Tony at Merriweather for Def Leppard. It got a bit cooler out, but it was still a might bit sweaty. He was getting there late, so I opted to go in and hear/see Lita Ford (he got there about as Posion started).

There were a LOT of people there, in the seats and especially on the lawn. People seemed to fill up a bit more a little bit before Poison went on. A very well attended show. I saw  a couple scalpers ($40 lawn. $45 regular price). I opted to make it a metal week and get Scorpions tix too ($15 off each \m/), so not bad overall. Shirts were expensive ($40), nothing really stood out to me merch wise.

Crowd was an interesting mix of the leathery legions (old timers), bikers,  normal looking people, the kids of all the above, and a surprising number of lesbians (cause of Lita Ford?). As I was strolling the lawn I noticed a pair of Mexican metalheads, who in head to toe black and long hair and death metal (or black metal) shirts were the most metal people there (besides me). I'm pretty sure I saw them at 1349 or some other Jaxx/Empire shows too. More about them in the Scorpions write-up!
Lita sounded pretty good technically, and her voice held up. But there was something lacking in her performance/stage presence. I couldn't tell exactly what it was, perhaps something about the combination of lackluster songs, ballady songs being her 'hits', and perhaps getting acclimated to the weather gave me an overall 'meh' feeling.

Poison went on to a much better ovation than Lita. I'm not a big Poison fan (They're alright), but they are def pretty good live. My buddy, a huge Poison fan, mentioned that their setlist is pretty much the same as he has seen then since....what 10 years back. They shoulda thrown in a deep cut or something. 2 covers also was a bad choice, IMO. Their backing vocals sounded horrible, like Tony and I were drunkenly shouting the choruses. Otherwise, Bret and co sounded very good. Kinda underwhelming, but pretty much what I expected (minus backing vox). Also the drum and guitar solos were totally unnecessary. Bret, if you need a break, just have CC sing 'Every Bone in your Body But Mine.'

Def Leppard went on after dark to a pretty damn loud crowd. As soon as they came on I remembered why these guys have sold millions upon millions of albums worldwide (OK, well after their first song, which was a new one. I mean it sounded good but I didn't know it so how pumped could I get?). These guys are consummate professionals- the sound, the show, the attitudes.Totally worth every penny to see just them alone! Admittedly, Joe had some effects on his mic to try to help him reach the high notes which seemed a bit... expected... but I didn't think it detracted from the performance that much. Vivian seemed to still phone in a bit of his solos just like last time. The guy who shredded with Dio... well I guess those days are long gone...

REGARDLESS, Def Leppard sounded great, looked strong, and I loved hearing 'Gods of War.' Of course I'd want some more deep cuts, but hearing those great Hysteria songs live again just floored me. So they really jammed, man. If you like Def Leppard, you gotta see 'em in concert.

Photos (pretty sorry selection):

Lita Ford

The Bitch is Back
Gotta Let Go
Living Like a Runaway
Kiss Me Deadly
Close My Eyes Forever 


 Look What the Cat Dragged In
Ride the Wind
We're An American Band
Your Mama Don't Dance
Guitar Solo
Fallen Angel
Unskinny Bop
Drum Solo
Every Rose Has Its Thorn
Talk Dirty To Me
Nothin' But a Good Time

Def Leppard

Let It Go
Love Bites
It's All About Believin'
Let's Get Rocked
Gods of War
Full Band Acoustic Medley/Snippets
(Where Does Love Go When It Dies
When Love and Hate Collide
Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad
Two Steps Behind)
Bringin' on the Heartbreak
Switch 625
Armageddon It
Pour Some Sugar on Me
Rock of Ages

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Freaks United - 7/4/2012

Went with John n Kate to Freaks United in godforsakenDC on July 4th. I was not familiar with any of the bands except the Gothsicles,  but it sounded like an interesting time. And promise of visible fireworks, so that was cool too. So after the fantastic adventure of driving thru DC, road closures, pedestrians, horrible buses, and the heat, we get to some sort of industrial (no pun intended) area, and we see the venue is some sort of warehouse looking building, near a Pepco property... and a Dept of Homeland Security office? At one point I needed to go out and re-park my car, because there was a very non obvious sign to park back in instead of parallel. Blew my mind.

We caught some of the DC fireworks a block or 2 from the club (which, by the way apparently is some sort of male strip club or the like usually- note the 'no touching' photo). One of the people at the door mentioned this too. As the night went on, the regulars slowly trickled in and I think they went upstairs. 

There were a good number of people there, some I recognized from Midnight (Phoebe, Matt, that cross dressing dude). A number of...interestingly dressed... girls too. It was a pretty fun time overall. Nothing on draft, but the drink prices were alright. I think I captured way too many lasers on my photos....

 ESA had songs with little or no vox, and I couldn't make out what he was saying when he did have vox. It was OK, but I really didn't get into it. It was one guy.

The Gothsicles came on next and were very energetic and fun. I thought the vocals sucked/were annoying, but the combination of the energy, silliness, and the related video behind them made it work. I thought it was a great live performance, but not a band I'd get a CD of. They were NES/chiptunes/the like themed. On their Superhero song they apparently gave me a shoutout- I was wearing my Captain America flag shirt. I completely missed it. The two guys both came and chatted with me briefly at different times- they were pretty cool guys. Also, one of them wore a power glove during the performance!

Interface came on next, with a drummer, a keyboardist, and a vocalist. I thought they were my favourite of the night, music wise. They had a slow spot in the middle (keys solo- Katya, see the photo where it looks like the dancefloor is deserted). Their last several songs were faster/more my speed :3 I think they were from NYC.

Waste- 2 guys in... masks and at their keys/compys I thought were a waste of time. Their couple songs I heard were very trancelike, sounded alike, no vocals, and didn't seem to go anywhere. I think we rolled outside for a break after that 2nd song.

iVardensphere- came on waaay late (12:30 something) and we were debating on leaving or hearing a bit. I dunno what the deal with the bongos was, but they were nearly inaudible. A few guys were there on percussion and they had the guy from ESA on vocals for one song (couldn't make out any lyrics). I couldn't get into them- they just were a lot of drums and bass with electronic elements, that just didn't grab me/ The songs didn't seem to go anywhere. The samples I heard before sounded better, but whatever.

Merch- Gothsicles, Interface def had merch-shirts n CDs, stickers, etc. I got an Interface CD ($10). There was another side to the merch table that I can't recall what it had beyond t shirts (not sure who for).

Photos (with a ton of lasers):



Gothsicles (~8:35)
  • This Year's Password Is 'Party'
  • Save Dat Mermaid
  • My Guy Died (Level 12 Human Sorcerer)
  • Drunk Cuts
  • Who Wants to Join Our Super Hero Team? (Right Now, It's Just Me & Jim) 
  • b-r-[x]-a-n
  • Wearing a Star Trek Uniform,Watching Tony Lechmanski Sleep
  • BAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLSSSS (Prometheus Burning vs. The Gothsicles)
  • Eff the sun 
  • (I could never be) your woman (Cover  of White town)
  • Konami Code IV

  • within your reach?
  • Stateless?
  • Destination 
  • Age of Computers
  • Angels in disguise
  • Katya
  • Stranger in a strange land
  • Never say farewell
  • Body Flow
  • Energize
  • Faith in Nothing
  • Wasted time
? (heard like 2 songs that were very trancey / sounded the same... went outside)

drum intro
song w/ guy from ESA

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Iron Maiden @ Jiffy Lube Live 6/30/2012

Went to see Iron Maiden (w/ Alice Cooper) @ Jiffy Lube Live with John n my brother. This is on the heels of a huge storm  and massive power outages. Jiffy Lube Live reported that the power was ON and the show was good to go!

Got there around 6, stood in line. Thought doors were at 5:30!? Apparently not. maybe like 6:15 or so the doors opened and we rolled in. Sweating profusely throughout the day. We made our way to the pit an positioned ourselves about 30 feet from the stage (Jaxx/Empire distance) for Alice. We got pushed back for Maiden, of course.

On the way in, I encountered the guys (and gal) from A Sound of Thunder!

Alice sounded great, but he had a smaller stage show than last time I saw him (with Rob Zombie). He still had props and got executed. And he had an Eddie like huge Frankenstein's monster with Alice's face. That was pretty sweet. He had 3 guitarists for some reason, one of them being Orianthi (that blond girl guitarist who almost played with Michael Jackson). Alice sounded as good as ever, and his command on stage was as strong as ever. No real complaints, except I could always use a longer set from Alice.

After Alice's set, the crowd predictably oozed forward and we got a bit smushed and pushed back.  I balanced getting pushed back with getting breathing room and not fainting. Maiden came on at 9PM, sharp- after Doctor Doctor \m/, as is their want.

Bruce and co sounded a bit muddy at first, but maybe that was because we were close. Further back, things actually sounded a bit clearer. At one point we were on the left (near the end) and the sound was still great, too. Yes, the base was still mixed a bit too high, but that was to be expected. I think that Jannick still coulda been cut from the band, with all his prancing and lackadaisical playing.  Highlights for me were Phantom, the Prisoner, and 7th Son. Bruce kinda of can't sing Aces High that well (the high notes), but other than that he sounded strong.

I believe I took a piss/water break during The Clairvoyant. It's a good song, but I'd rather hear other ones. The crowd was packed in the pit and the seat seats. the lawn looked well attended, but not until after the sun went down (as it was hot as a mother that day).

We left at The Evil That Men Do, because I drove and didn't want to get stuck in the parking lot for like half an hour. So we listened to that and Running Free (w/ crowd participation) on the way out. It was probably the shortest that it took me to get out of Jiffy Lube Live ever.

Saw Dorothy, Sascha (from work), A Sound of Thunder, an maybe one more person there LOL.

(Iron Maiden)



(A Sound of Thunder)


Alice Cooper

The Black Widow
Brutal Planet
I'm Eighteen
No More Mr. Nice Guy
Hey Stoopid
Guitar Solo
Billion Dollar Babies
Feed My Frankenstein
Wicked Young Man
I Love the Dead
School's Out

Iron Maiden
Can I Play With Madness
The Prisoner
2 Minutes to Midnight
Afraid to Shoot Strangers
The Trooper
The Number of the Beast
Phantom of the Opera
Run to the Hills
Wasted Years
Seventh Son of a Seventh Son
The Clairvoyant
Fear of the Dark
Iron Maiden
Churchill's Speech
Aces High
The Evil That Men Do
Running Free

Bang Tango @ Empire 6/27/2012

Bang Tango @ Empire 6/27/2012

I went to see Bang Tango last night @ Jaxx/Empire. Max 20 people there. Including me, and maybe some people with the band. I think this was probably the worst attended show (besides Anvil- also at Jaxx) I've been to. King Belvedere, a local band from MD opened for them. They sounded alright. Kind of like a cross between Dangerous Toys, AC/DC, and Sebastian Bach. Nothing amazing, but nothing horrible. It was pretty rough, looking at the crowd (or lack thereof) for Bang Tango, but what could you really expect for a Wednesday night show, not too much promotion, and a um..D level hair band (not to say that I don't love Bang Tango, cause I totally do. Hell I came and paid my $15 to see them!).

Before and as King Belvedere was playing I was sitting at the bar, talking to the cute, busty bartender. And then some guys come up and ask for shots. And I noticed that "hey you're that  guy from that band I came to see!" And I got a quick horrible picture of me and Joe Leste. Not a groundbreaking achievement, but still cool. For us die hard Bang Tango fans. About 5 minutes later, Bang Tango took the stage!

Joe and the band sounded very good, and they had a way better setlist than they did at M3. Joe sounded better also, his usual raspy self. He def had been drinking, and his on stage banter ranged from asking for shots from the busty bartender to her rack to why no Beautiful Creatures songs. one other vocal fan said something about them not playing Dressed up Vamp or Dancin' on Coals (both were highlights for me), and then Joe and Co. played them. I don't know if they were going to play those songs anyway (try finding other people who go to Bang Tango shows and post setlists!), but that seemed pretty cool. Their bass player was def the same one who's been with them for a while, I couldn't really recall about the guitarist or drummer tho. No complaints really sonically. It sounded good to me and I banged my head accordingly. Me and a couple other BT fans were the most energetic.

At one point, Joe announced that they were going to play a song by another band. I shout "is it Beautiful Creatures?" He said NO and proceeded to joke that they would have to play songs from [the guitarists' old band I  presume] if they did that. A bit later, he pointed at my UFO shirt and rambled about talking/drinking/sitting with Phil Mogg. Cool. I do recall them doing a UFO cover (Lights Out) at some previous show, as a side note.

Look, I enjoyed the show, but it seems to me that Jaxx/Empire would loose money on a show like this. Why didn't Bang Tango get on some package deal with another hair band- they would draw at least double the people I would think. On the way out, the advertized $20 Great White tickets ($25 presell, $30 DOS). So I grabbed one (UPDATE: due to the power outages and such, the show was canceled :(  ). The guys in the band were very gracious and I think they really appreciated people coming out to support them. I wish more people came out :/  I wonder how the Ottobar show (the next day) went. 

Bang Tango had some shirts, a new CD ($12, maybe I shoulda got that one?), and a few more items.


Set List
  • Ready to Go
  • Attack of Life 
  • Love Injection
  • Dick in the System
  • Our Way
  • 20th Century Boy (T. Rex cover)
  • Bring On The World
  • Dressed Up Vamp
  • Dancin' on Coals
  • Soul to Soul
  • Breaking Up a Heart of Stone
  • Live Life
  • Highway to Hell (AC/DC cover) 
  • Don't stop
  • Someone Like You