Send The Sages 04/02/10

Whiskey A Go Go – West Hollywood, CA

Words/Photos/Video by

I seem to recall that it was Easter weekend 1999 (I could be totally wrong) when my friends and I made our monthly trip to the Cactus Club in San Jose to see local favorites Papa Roach.  Only this night was very different as we would finally get a chance a band out of Southern California that P-Roach had been raving about for months.  That band was Alien Ant Farm, and within minutes of them hitting the stage, I was gushing blood thanks to front man Dryden Mitchell’s knee making contact with my nose.  Safe to say, I was hooked.  Now fast forward to Good Friday 2010, my wife has a friend in town who has a cousin who knows some dude who is in a band with Dryden and they are playing at the Whiskey A-Go-Go on the Sunset Strip.  Despite my hate for the once legendary, now laughable landmark, we headed into Hollywood knowing that even if Send The Sages didn’t live up to AAF, the night would at least be spent with good friends.
After watching terrible bands for 2+ hours, (which you can read all about here) it was finally time to check out the reason were at the Whiskey in the first place.  Within seconds of taking the stage, I knew my wait was worth it.  The raw power exploding from the stage captured the collective attention of the audience immediately.  Opening with “Lumens”, the four piece band took that attention and placed it in a fierce stranglehold.  Making sure to stand further back then my first time, years of touring has only improved the stage presence of Mitchell.  When not describing the bands sound as a mix of Sade and Pantera, the volatile vocalist was in the face of the fans, messing with cameras, giving high fives with the souls of his sneakers and never once missing a beat.
The few times I saw AAF, it always felt like Dryden’s show.  With Send The Sages, guitarist Jack Armenian is an equal match to the bands platinum front man.  Sure, he may not be violently shaking the overhead PA with his hands causing panic in the eyes of security, but the riffs coming from his guitar are just as aggressive and abrasive.  Rich in melody and deep in distortion, while the Sade/Pantera comparison is accurate, Send The Sages reminded me of why I love artists like Deftones, Far, Poison The Well and At The Drive-In.  If I was not already won over on musical ability, Mitchell’s calling out the Whiskey from the stage for it’s unprofessional staff and unfriendly atmosphere would have done the trick.  In fact, based off the introduction to the last song of the night, “Victories and Consequences”, I wouldn’t be shocked if the band didn’t play the venue again (which is fine by me).


About two thirds of the way through the set, Mitchell seemed to be thinking aloud as the band tuned up.  He couldn’t figure out if the crowd were friends who came out just because, or if a fan base was growing.  Judging by the reaction, it was the later.  Sure, a friend of a friend brought me out, but the music won me over and left me wanting more.  When you watch an up and coming band, you can tell pretty easily if the band has it or not.  Send The Sages has it, and I look forward to watching their journey.

A direct descendant of the outlaw Jesse James and star of a 1983 Kilpatricks Bread radio commercial, Reverend Justito has taken his gift of ADHD and put it to good use by creating one of a kind concert reviews. A bootlegger at heart, the man lives off Whiskey, Taco Bell and the love of San Francisco sports teams.
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Saturday, April 3rd, 2010 at 9:42 pm.
Categories: Reviews.

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