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Friday, August 29, 2014

Cannibal Corpse - Mayhem Fest 2014

From the Dallas, Texas stop of Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival 2014, the bummer performance review to write. 

I was very excited to see Cannibal Corpse for the first time. Some would argue, they are the godfathers of modern and current HorrorCore. There have been death metal and black metal bands with a few gaining world wide success. Yes, there is a decent list of bands that are remarkable and (in)famous for what they do, but in my opinion there are only 2 bands world wide that evoke a physical reaction from people when you talk about them. Here is one before you [the other I won't name, but will say this R.I.P. - J.H 05/02/13].

Cannibal Corpse ( was the final band to perform on the side stages I saw, before the event moved inside to the amphitheater. There was absolutely no doubt the crowd was ready for this as well. With very little fanfare, just the crunch of a guitar, IT WAS ON!

I was happy to be inside the barricade shooting photos, because the crush of fans looked pretty damn intense. The weird thing is that they were all just kinda ...there...I watched. They were just there. Up against the barricade. Some with their hands up. A few with heads thrashing. But it was weird, they were all just standing there. Like a bunch of fuckin zombies. Beyond the crush against the barricade a pit started, proof that some fans of metal were still alive and kicking it. I enjoyed myself, I snapped the shit outta photos. I listened, and I took it in.

For one of the most notorious frontmen of one of the most notorious bands, George "Corpsegrinder" Fisher is frightening in all of his methodic and deliberate actions onstage. I was impressed by the music and the audience seemed dead to the music. Maybe it was appropriate for who was on stage - get it? dead crowd - Cannibal Corpse - eh  eh   ehh?

I have no doubt and no question that you put the right band in front of the right crowd at the right venue and things can be drastically different. I think this was the case here. Hours baking in the sun on the hot ass asphalt, drains even the most hard core fan. Mix in alcohol...fuck it, you're done!

I know that I will be in line, or down in front, or back stage, or wherever the fuck I have to be when Cannibal Corpse hits Austin, Texas. And I know it will be a fierce event in whatever venue has the balls and the size to make it happen (Emo's). And it will be a beautiful death metal sight to behold.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Upon A Burning Body - Mayhem Fest 2014

Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival 2014 rolled through Dallas, Texas. There were just a couple of acts proud to be rocking the home state crowd. I will talk about one of the others later, but for now...

Upon A Burning Body ( [a.k.a. - UABB]! The last time I saw these guys from San Antonio, they were tearing shit up on a stage for South By South West [SXSW], in Austin, TX about 3 yrs ago. My how things have changed and remained the same. A little bit older, maybe a bit more hardened by the road, but doing it like NO ONE ELSE on the Mayhem Stages.

If the music doesn't make you think twice about UABB or take notice as they first hit the stage, it would be the unmistakable style. Balls, pride, and confidence to drop the music as hard as they do, looking as good as they do. And best of all, I don't think anyone, in any band, could do it as good in the Texas heat. Fuck all the fakers. 

Although lead singer Danny does a masterful job of controlling the crowd, it is without a doubt, the bands energy as a whole, that whips the crowd into a frenzy. C'mon, it is seriously the most unbelievable sight and sound when you have a hardcore metal band like UABB, do some corny ass shit - like sing the state song in 'Texas Blood Money' - and the crowd is not just singing along, but moving as one giant, thrashing organism. That is some cool ass shit to experience! 

I feel blessed and lucky enough to have spent a few minutes with singer Danny and guitarist Ruben before they went onstage. Although the interview was fun (and I think it was a good moment for them to step away from themselves before going onstage), the live performance of UABB is something altogether stellar to behold.

Ruben's final words that wrapped our interview, are some words I love and think will stick in the heart of every Texan, metal fan, and UABB fan out there. - "As long as they got our back, we got theirs!" -
Here is a link to the audio interview, enjoy it and the photos! (

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Darkest Hour - Mayhem Fest 2014

On a hot day in August 2014, I planned on sweating beyond belief, suffering myself a little heat exhaustion, and cooking like an egg on a cast iron skillet. But, God Damn! I love this stuff. This is what separates the fans from the fan boys. The lover of music, the festival scene, the energy, excitement, and massive crowd, all of this is what I am built and programmed for. I will share the little bits and pieces here with you and throw in my photos as well.

Darkest Hour ( was the first band I got to see for the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival. To say these guys were awesome would be old hat and stupid. Of course they fucking rock balls out, they are on the Mayhem Festival with 20+ other bands. They didn't make this cut on luck. All of the bands that performed this year need to have their head on straight about that fact. And the fans out there that didn't like this band or that band should shut the hell up, as there was enough distance in all of the different metal styles you could pick and choose.

Darkest Hour was surprisingly more melodic than I expected. There music struck a great balance between kicking in your teeth or letting you breathe between mosh pits. This translated wonderfully for the live crowd at a festival. For those that wanted to get there violence on and mosh their brains out...or those who wanted to stand with their arms crossed and breathe it in deeply...Darkest Hour hit the right chords. Like most of the bands, they came out charging and ran through their set and gave everyone just enough, and a little piece of everything to make it really fucking good!

Here are more photos from Darkest Hour onstage.