It’s been an age since we took a trip and covered a live show. I forget how much I need things like this, it’s easy to do in the hum-drum of life. I really do need music. I forget the smell of a live show too, or it fades a little in my memory that I spend days filling with responsibility and adulthood – the beer, unwashed hair, unwashed jackets, too much cologne, not enough, and incense somewhere. It’s like being in a holy place, but the worship is all the same.
So while the province of British Columbia burned down around us like some kind of apocalypse, we took a trip to Vancouver, BC, to see EYEHATEGOD, Erosion, Waingro, and Unroot.
This was my third time seeing EYEHATEGOD. The first since Mike’s liver transplant. The last time I spoke to him, we were beyond fucked up at Housecore Horror Festival in 2014. It was one day before my friend/inspiration (and organizer of Housecore) Corey Mitchell died young. I remember watching Mike’s eyes as we spoke drunkenly in that green room. It was humbling and surreal. I remember watching them open for PORTAL. I remember physically feeling the power of both of these bands.
I don’t know what I expected from EHG at this show, but they delivered it all and more. The band was in true form, the sound so utterly tight and amazing. It’s the clearest I’ve ever heard the band, which is a weird remark to make, but the sound was really off the chain for whoever was on the board at Rickshaw Theatre that night.
Erosion played third, and this is a band I’ve only recently heard about from Vancouver. I felt like this music was very driving, hard, the vocalist limber, and exuding some pretty intense energy. I found it difficult to capture his intensity accurately. I admire people who can channel powerful energy into their art while remaining seemingly relatively normal while offstage. For not having heard much of this band previously, I was very impressed with what they were offering.
The boys in Waingro played second, and this is a band I’m somewhat familiar with. I like the driving nature of their songs, that goes between intense and almost upbeat to marching and sludgey. I appreciated the singer’s CBS FOX Video shirt, and their onstage banter. I felt like this band may have gained some new fans in the crowd but was somewhat disappointed the crowd for their set wasn’t larger as they fucking ruled.
To be most honest, I found myself the most impressed with Unroot for a variety of reasons, mostly that for a band playing first with not a ton of material, they put on a brilliant fucking set. The other part that was impressive was related to the sound – they sounded clear as a bell, and were intimidating. The energy they gave to an opening set made it obvious they weren’t fucking around. This band calls their music “blackened death”, and bear images of forests and trees, and I think this is one of the the rare times with the plethora of black metal sound alike bands out there that I have encountered an act that sounds legitimately wild. This is a hard concept to explain, but, a lot of people try to sound wild, and sound positively tame. Not these guys. Thanks for the great set, boys!
I’m not writing an indepth show report here, mostly because I often find it hard to put into witty words, how much a show means to me, especially when it has been something so necessary, so important, and so valuable.
I really urge you all to support these bands and consider checking out the live show if it rolls through your town. Special thanks to the boys in Unroot and Waingro for having us along for the ride this time.
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