On January 22nd at the 31st Street Pub, I caught Rosetta, Fight Amp, Kylesa on the first legs of their US-Canadian tour. Fight Amp is a band from southern New Jersey formed in 2003, and I got the chance to get introduced to them in 2005 at several basement shows in New Brunswick,NJ. Considering it has been so many years since I last saw them, I was stoked to catch them here in Pittsburgh. Additionally, VCPUNX had managed to get Rosetta to play a show at Vassar College, making the Pittsburgh show's line-up even more of a nostalgia trip. Sadly the venue had some serious tech issues, and the resulting effect was a shortened show that lacked luster despite all the bands' determination to play through the issues. Fight Amp's drummer Mike Howard ended up splitting his pedal in two... what a fucking maniac! All the bands had great presence, having drawn out a packed crowd. I look forward to catching Kylesa again, hopefully in their full audio glory. They played some older tracks, though certainly focusing on songs from their most recent release, Spiral Shadow. Anyway, despite the hiccups of the live show , the golden opportunity to pick-up schwag was there and I clasped my greedy little fingers around it. The following albums were picked up at the show (minus Spiral Shadow) from the musicians themselves. DIG THE MUSIC KIDS!
FIGHT AMP's Hungry for Nothing and it's follow-up Manners and Praise are two albums that call back to the days of booze-soaked metal-punk festering in the basements of New Jersey. It's really great to see these guys getting the exposure they deserve. Having been a touring band for about seven years and dealing with several line-up changes, theses guys are professionals in their craft. Their many splits, especially those with with Exosus and Black Tusk, show case their brooding sound, and their two albums have been excellent explorations into the depths of their manic depravity and punk debauchery. I mean honestly, the title of their first EP says it all: Ugly kids doing ugly things. After that night's show they said that they are hopefully playing another Pittsburgh show in May/June on another US tour, so keep your eyes peeled!
FIGHT AMP Myspace and Official Website
DL (MF) - HUNGRY FOR NOTHING
DL (MF) - MANNERS AND PRAISE
ROSETTA's self-labelling as "metal for astronauts" is adequately fitting, and they have been carving out their particular sound for a long time with relentless touring both in the US and abroad. Their latest release A Determinism of Morality is an exploration into the emotive cascades of pounding drums and ethereal guitars and synths, layered with brutal vocals. Loud, immersive and intense, Rosetta continues to remain aloof of the label "post metal" while maintaining the chaos of creativity.
ROSETTA Myspace and Official Store
DL (MF) - A DETERMINISM OF MORALITY
I know Kylesa's Time Will Fuse Its Worth is already heavily trafficked on the internet, but I feel like posting this because it just deserves the attention. Spiral Shadow, though having received mixed reviews for its accessibility, I believe is a great album despite it's tendency towards being more polished and produced. The latter is a true showcase of awesome stoner metal, while the former displays Kylesa's recent leaning towards a heavy yet noticeably more accessible sound... you be the judge.
KYLESA Myspace and Official Website
DL (MF) - TIME WILL FUSE ITS WORTH
DL (MF) - SPIRAL SHADOW
Braving the frigidity of the Pittsburgh winter to bring you dank tunes, yours truly,