Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Acrassicauda at Brick by Brick in San Diego

Hey There:

I'm MexiMetal, Vico's friend and he's letting me post about the awesome concert I saw last night at Brick by Brick. I went to see an Iraqi metal band called Acrassicauda.

I first learned about them in the Public Library of all places. I saw a book entitled "Heavy Metal in Baghdad: The Story of Acrassicauda". My first reaction was WTF!? So I checked out the book and was fascinated by their story. Of how the got started into metal listening to bootleg copies of Sepultura and Metallica. This reminded me a lot of when I first got into metal in Mexico, back before the Internet and YouTube.

"Born out of a basement rehearsal space in Baghdad and inspired by western bands like Metallica, Slayer, and Slipknot, Acrassicauda ("Black Scorpion") played only three live shows in Iraq before the country began to disintegrate around them. Rebels and religious fundamentalists accused them of Satan worship. Eventually it became impossible to find any venue where they could safely perform. Still, they refused to let their dreams die."

Because of the book I learned there was a documentary on them. Here's the clip of the documentary, click here to get to the site. Once I saw the film I realized how much I've taken for granted the freedom to choose what I listen to and go to see bands without a second thought, especially as a woman. The only fear I have is getting knocked out by people in the mosh pit.

That was then, this is now!

The first time I saw them live was at The Roxy in West Hollywood, in one of those concerts offered by Scion/Radio 17, which are FREE concerts, all you need to do is RSVP.

It was a pretty good show and I remember the vocalist Faisal Mustafa said: "If someone told me 5 years ago that I would be playing a gig in Hollywood, I would have said they were out of their Fucking minds", and of course everyone made lots of noise.

This time, I got to see them in their first U.S. Tour which ended in San Diego, CA at Brick by Brick.

Another personal anecdote about them, on Sunday I was in Mexicali visiting family and left a cousin's birthday party early so I could get on my way to San Diego and see the band. After I crossed the border, I stopped at the gas station I always stop at before getting on my way. And I noticed a white van with this guy that looked too familiar.

I feel somewhat embarassed now because I was star struck looking at Tony Yaqoo with wide eyes and surprised expression, got down from my car and said hello. I was very excited to meet them! The guys are so nice and even took a pic with them. Also once we all made it to Brick by Brick they all said Hello to me again. Yay!

The concert itself was full of energy, it wasn't packed or anything, but the fans are die hard and make as much noise as they can. Their debut album "Only the Dead See the End of the War" contains only four songs, but they sang a lot more than that.

This band is brutal and dedicated to their music. Once you start listening to them you will get the struggle and history behind each song. Though they are not politically motivated they do have something to say and they say it in the best way possible, with fucking awesome music!

Here are some pics I took at the concert and at the end is a video of their song "Garden of Stones". Also here are links to their social sites so you can follow them as well:




Before they start each concert

Small crowd but loud as hell!!

Marwan Hussein

Mo (guitar) / Firas (bass) / Tony (guitar) / Faisal (vocals)

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Band Review: Sabaton

Medieval Armor Footwear (Sabaton)
 No, we're not talking about some medieval armored footwear. We're talking about a relentless war machine coming all the way from Sweden to show you that not only Trolls and really pissed off Death/Black Metal comes from such a frozen land.

Sabaton is a Power Metal band of the interesting kind, back when I heard them somewhere around 2009 it came to me as an interesting project. This is a Power Metal band talking mostly of World War 2 and a bunch other wars most people have forgotten through time or don't want to remember, like the Six Day War or the Vietnam War, and every time they've surprised me again and again.

Sabaton, the Power Metal band from Sweden
First they had a bunch of covers they recorded into their debut album called Fist for Fight, quite original yes, then they made their own material and called it Primo Victoria, so far so good, with a nice keyboard combining powerful long power chords, then they went for Attero Dominatus, with an impressive intro song called as the album it wasn't lacking at all, then they progressed to The Art of War, which talks about Sun-Tzu, and let me tell you this was one of the best records I had heard so far until the release of the all-mighty and powerful Coat of Arms, again the power they deliver through their album is massive and I'm still debating between The Art of War and Coat of Arms but still I'd recommend anybody to pick both up or pick all their material up for that matter.

In brief, awesome band from Sweden that doesn't growl or tune their guitar lower yet has powerful vocals, no falsetto screams by the way, and excellent music that any headbanger would enjoy. Check them out on YouTube and do yourself a favor and get a physical copy if you'd like to listen to their music, the band is well worth the price of their albums in my personal opinion.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Gig Review: Warbringer @ El Divan de Alicia

Warbringer loot!
It's 11:30PM and I know Warbringer is already playing at El Divan. My relay at work was supposed to arrive at 10 and he was nowhere to be found and I knew I was way late for the show so I pressed the eject button and arrive as fast as I can there.

It is midnight.

And they're still playing.

I greet the Legion, the crew that's always there, and grab a beer and a smoke then finally settle down to enjoy the show.

How was it?

The whole thing was good, from what other people told me, and unfortunately there wasn't that many people in there since it was Sunday but alas what can one do when a date is given and it's not negotiable.

How was Warbringer?

It was good, again what I managed to catch up to, and they gave us the privilege to listen to a never before played live song, which the head bangers were happy with and gave the place some creed, BUT what turned it from good to great was the last song.

I've seen huge pits, the size of a parking lot back in '07 with Trivium, I've seen the Mosh Pits and the "Dancers" in Hatebreed, I've seen, and been hit, by a fuck ton of body surfers specially in Danzig, I've seen the brutal pits of Slayer and the post-effects, I gazed first hand the mighty power of Raining Blood, completely baffled by its power, which gives me shivers every time I remember it, I was on the front row for Lamb of God wall of death, which is another memory that makes me shiver, and quite fondly remember telling Randy, the vocal of Lamb of God, to go fuck himself after he told me to join the wall of death, he just laughed at the comment and probably thought I'm a fucking pussy for not smashing my head against some huge head banger that's as tall as a tree and hard as a rock, I don't have the constitution for that shit, and I mention this because I moshed at Cannibal Corpse and I got beat the fuck up, by a chick that looked like a TANK and had enough metal on her face to raise the alarm of any metal detector in a ten mile radius.

Regardless, I'm getting away from the subject at hand.

Even though there were only a handful of people the vocal managed to get nice circle pits going around and a mini wall of death which turned into what I call "the blender".

What is the blender?

What happens after you do a Wall of Death? You start beating the shit out of everything in your way because you're pumped with adrenaline. You start jumping all over the place and then people start spinning fucking angrily and fast like a horde of wasps. That's the blender, the post-effect of a well performed wall of death, and if this doesn't happen and people can freely go back to wherever they were originally located then you didn't do it well.

I feel proud to be honest, and I mentioned this before on another review, for being able to see bands like Warbringer and Cruel Hand down here in Tijuana and not in the US. It's different to the local scene, obviously, but regardless of that the point is that bands from another country are coming here which speaks a lot about us, as Mexicans, our nation and El Divan de Alicia.

I didn't take pictures, I got one taken though but I don't know the person, aside from the one above which doesn't count but I got fond memories of the event, specially those of alcohol... lots of alcohol... but more importantly we got to chat and the guys are an interesting bunch, really interesting bunch.

So in brief, an excellent show, awesome supporting crowd, for coming out on Sunday nonetheless, good times and good friends. Catch Warbringer on their oncoming tour if you have a chance, you won't regret it!

Dates below for your commodity:

Jun 18Cobalt CafeCanoga Park, CA

Jun 24The Blue Lagoon w/A Band of Orcs, Hatchet, Exmortus, WitchhavenSanta Cruz, CA

Jun 25Slaughter By the Water Fest - Craneway PavillionRichmond, CA

Jul 08Metaphor CafeEscondido, CA

Jul 09The VaultTemecula, CA

Jul 16Famous Sports BarThousand Oaks, CA

Jul 22The StarlineFresno, CA

Jul 23Thrashocalypse - Melody BallroomModesto, CA
Jul 24The VaultHollister, CA

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Recommendation of Today: Ill Niño - Confessions

Track listing

No. Title Length
1. "Te Amo...I Hate You"   3:33
2. "How Can I Live"   3:17
3. "Two (Vaya Con Dios)"   3:23
4. "Unframed"   3:23
5. "Cleansing"   3:45
6. "This Time's for Real"   3:27
7. "Lifeless...Life..."   2:47
8. "Numb"   4:06
9. "Have You Ever Felt?"   3:18
10. "When It Cuts"   2:48
11. "Letting Go"   3:18
12. "All the Right Words"   4:08
13. "Re-Birth"   2:54
14. "How Can I Live/Como Puedo Vivir" (Spanish Version) 3:11

I remember listening to Ill Niño for the first time in the Headbangers Ball 2CD Compilation back in '04 or '05.

Some time later a friend bought the Confessions CD and lent it to me so I could burn it. I enjoyed it and I still do from time to time when I feel the need to feel nostalgic or simply want to enjoy this interesting fusion of Nu Metal and Tribalistic/Latin Music.

From beginning to end I've always enjoyed it, the guitars, the drums, the chorus, the effects, everything. The voice I've always considered to be hypnotizing when combined with all the effects and instruments, it really transmits a lot of energy to you from beginning to end, from every member of the band.

Highly recommended to be bought in physical format or go for digital but really now, help the band out and do it the right way when acquiring it.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Recommendation of Today: Candlemass - King of the Grey Islands

All songs written by Leif Edling

  1. "Prologue" - 0:56
  2. "Emperor of the Void" - 4:29
  3. "Devil Seed" - 5:44
  4. "Of Stars and Smoke" - 5:38
  5. "Demonia 6" - 6:23
  6. "Destroyer" - 7:52
  7. "Man of Shadows" - 6:17
  8. "Clearsight" - 6:52
  9. "The Opal City" - 1:13
  10. "Embracing the Styx" - 8:19
  11. "Solitude" - 5:58 (Bonus track on digipak)
  12. "At the Gallows End" - 5:22 (Bonus track on digipak)
For those of us that like Doom Metal this is probably, in my opinion, one of the best out there although Epicus Doomicus Metallicus is still the number one in my list.

Even though I feel it goes a little faster this time and that solos could be avoided, yet again my opinion, it all gives it some really nice flavor to this album. The bonus solitude song is a really nice addition to the album but again, I'd rather have my music in that crude state in which you find the first Candlemass album.

All in all the general Doom theme is ever present in this malevolent album and even if you're not into Doom you still may want to check it out since there may be a thing or two you could end up liking here.

Some interesting events of the past few weeks

First off we had that infamous Slayer tribute that we had been waiting for so long now and I'll tell you a little secret about it...

We saw some of the most brutal pits in the history of the Divan and I can say this was a decent blood tribute to Slayer. I recall seeing at least two guys bleeding, one from the ear, and several others looking as if a steamroller had ran over them. The fun part was seeing them the next day all fucked up and trying to walk around like robots.

Someone may upload a video of that and if they do I'll link it here so you guys can see how that turned out.

Next stop would be the upcoming Megafest with Konstrictor as the headliners, representing all the way from Mexicali, Vactheria, Wasted, from Tecate and Dyon Exxxtortion, which I haven't had the pleasure to actually see live. That'll be on a Friday so prepare for some good Thrash and cheap beer!

Now most importantly is Warbringer on Sunday, why Sunday well because that's the date they gave the place so fuck it and enjoy it, and from this video I can tell you shit is going to be as awesome as it gets. For said event we'll have Soldiery, chicken molester!, Scythe, all the way from LA, Restos Mortales, from Tecate, Voces sin Rostro and Ausgebombt, from Mexicali.

If you want to go to an awesome event then find a way to get 10 bucks, sell your uberly devaluated liver if you have to you drunken fuck, and you can bet your ass you'll enjoy it.

Lastly there's a group of people, mainly those of us who assist to El Divan in a daily religous fashion, who are getting a sort of help group setup for local metal bands. This group will be known as the Metal Legion of Tijuana and sooner than later you may be able to see us around to lend you a hand.

Until next time,
Vico Surge

Warbringer @ Divan de Alicia - May 8th, 2011

Megafest @ Divan de Alicia - May 6th, 2011