When rock legends like Maynard James Keenan and Billy Howerdel stop in your town, you get your ass to that show. The band A Perfect Circle hasn’t released new tunes for about 6 years, and let’s face it, fans are getting anxious. The venue of choice for their tour stop on 08/01/11 in Salt Lake City was Kingsbury Hall. This is an opera-style theater. While waiting to get in to the theater, the surroundings and demeanor of the venue didn’t really seem to wear off on it’s attendees. I had a great time people watching, and was not bored at all. There were girls in shredded shirts, Madonna-esque neon dresses, and a few couples who dressed in outstanding taste complete with suit coat and wingtip shoes. Don’t worry, there were plenty of black tees and ripped pants. The venue was extremely strict about phone usage. They actually confiscated people’s cell phones if they took them out inside the hall. I knew with all the extra security and beefed up recording policies, that Maynard wasn’t messing around.
When I was allowed into the hall finally, I was told there was no standing and I’d get to crawl on the floor for two songs to shoot this band. I can honestly say, this was the most difficult, exciting, and nerve-racking shoot I’ve ever done. The stage was set up with fake explosives and bombs, complete with flowers “sprouting” from the casings. It reminded me of an old-west town prop. I happened to pick a spot in front of a mini-piano(I know there is a term for it but hey, I don’t know it). When the lights went out, my hands started to shake and the crowd cheered. Because of my spot, I was a mere 2 feet from Billy Howerdel as he played the mini-piano to opening song “Annihilation”. At this time, the lights were almost completely out, and Maynard was but a silhouette. In fact, the brightest it ever got while we were allowed to photograph was some purple lights, and a light burst, but that was it.
For the second song, the famous John Lennon tune, “Imagine”, the purple lights were going and I was a little more confident that my photos may turn out. Now at this point we could see that Maynard had on his sunglasses, and was rocking shoulder-length black hair, but that was about it. James Iha had a place at the keyboard, and Matt McJunkins was rocking out to my right. Billy picked up his guitar, and haunting notes and lyrics from the past rang out in Kingsbury Hall.
Before I knew it, my photo time was up and I was being kindly escorted out by staff. As I walked out, “Weak and Powerless” started, along with a beautiful ghostly yellow lighting scheme. This was my second time seeing this band, and this was a very intimate, almost holy experience. I was honored that I was allowed to be there and take photos, and I don’t think anyone could walk out of that show feeling like their $75.00 wasn’t well spent. If you don’t have the cash for this tour, find a way. Pawn that old guitar, mow lawns, walk dogs. Hell, make it happen. If you don’t go, you can’t possibly understand what you’ll be missing. Please enjoy the photos below.
I tell you, rock bands need to stop announcing tours when I am stuck in traffic. As our friends at Antiquiet, COS and countless others have all pointed out – A Perfect Circle are gearing up for a tour of the left coast. The band (that features the bald dude from Tool and the Asian dude from The Smashing Pumpkins) will play intimate venues for multiple nights. Each night the band will perform one of their records from front to back.
Tweet 1: Marquee – Tempe AZ, Avalon – LA, Showbox at the Market – Seattle, The Fillmore – SF, The Pearl – Vegas. 3 nights each. Album each night.
Tweet 2: MJK, Billy, Josh Freese, James Iha, Matt McJunkins (Ashes Divide, Puscifer).
Tweet 3: Jeordie, Paz, and Troy all have awesome stuff going on that they couldn’t step away from. But all is well with them.
Dates are as follows:
11/04: Tempe, AZ @ Marquee Theatre (Mer de Noms)
11/05: Tempe, AZ @ Marquee Theatre (Thirteenth Step)
11/06: Tempe, AZ @ Marquee Theatre (eMOTIVe)
11/08: Los Angeles, CA @ Avalon (Mer de Noms)
11/09: Los Angeles, CA @ Avalon (Thirteenth Step)
11/10: Los Angeles, CA @ Avalon (eMOTIVe)
11/12: Seattle, WA @ Showbox at the Market (Mer de Noms)
11/13: Seattle, WA @ Showbox at the Market (Thirteenth Step)
11/14: Seattle, WA @ Showbox at the Market (eMOTIVe)
11/16: San Francisco, CA @ The Fillmore (Mer de Noms)
11/17: San Francisco, CA @ The Fillmore (Thirteenth Step)
11/18: San Francisco, CA @ The Fillmore (eMOTIVe)
11/20: Las Vegas, NV @ The Pearl (Mer de Noms)
11/21: Las Vegas, NV @ The Pearl (Thirteenth Step)
Words/Photos by Reverend Justito/concertconfessions.com
This past Tuesday night, I headed to Club Nokia here in Los Angeles to check out the first annual Epiphone/Revolver Golden Gods Awards presented by Honda Fury. I met up with our contest winner Jeff (cool guy) and fellow talesfromthepit.net user Cheryl (a.k.a. Krazy For Korn/also very cool) to check out the whose who of heavy metal (the show even included a black carpet instead of the traditional red). Despite the fact that the winners list leaked on blabbermouth.net a few hours before the show, it is not my goal to tell you about the winners here You can simply watch the show on MTV2 on May 2nd who won the rather unique awards.
God presenting an award to the Rainbow Bar & Grill
Part of the advertising in local street papers and the internet that made me excited for this show was a DJ set by Corey Taylor of Slipknot. I have a lot of respect for Taylor and thought watching him DJ would be a real treat. No disrespect to Taylor, he picked a great mix of metal (everything from Priest and Black Sabbath to White Zombie and Pantera) and punk (Minor Thread anyone?). I however expected him to spin vinyl, not play songs from his IPOD. “Spinning” from the venues soundboard, Taylor was kind enough to take photos with fans and seemed to be having a blast. Most important, he got the crowed pumped up for the evening, one classic at a time.
Corey Taylor - Golden Gods 09: Club Nokia, Los Angeles CA
The first musical performance of the evening was Killswitch Engage. I was somewhat shocked that they opened the show, but looking back, you want a big opening for television and they definitely can fill those shoes. The band opened with the Guitar Hero hit “My Curse”. As the crowd simply stood and watched like it was a Tuesday night in Silver Lake, guitarist Adam D taunted the crowd, calling them names the censors will have to remove from the broadcast. Up next was a new song (name unknown) that very well may have been making its live debut. Just my impression – it felt very light and I hate to say it but an attempt at a commercial hit. The band closed their three song set with their cover of Dio’s “Holy Diver.” About ½ way though the song, the venue opened up the second section of the three tiered lower floor. Many including myself moved up to be closer to the action. As front man Howard Jones belted out the classic, Adam D continued to call the crowd another word for cats. The band thanked the crowd and left the stage, seeming disappointed by the lack luster response.
The second performance of the night was by Riverside Grindcore up and comers Suicide Silence. I had never heard the music of this five piece band and all I have to say is this. Heavy fucking elephant tits. Wow, these guys were amazing. The band wore typical sneakers and tight black jeans, but up top the band had on white button up shirts, black ties and nice suit jackets. As the band played their four song set, the nights first circle pits got going up on the front of the floor. These guys won me over big time, and I will be seeking them out again for sure.
Mitch Lucker of Suicide Silence - Golden Gods 2009: Club Nokia - Los Angeles, CA
I don’t recall what award he gave out, but Hatebreed front man (and this decades Rikki Rachtman) Jamey Jasta warned the crowd that he expected to see EVERYONE moving during his bands set. When they hit the stage a few minutes later, the the audience did not disappoint the Connecticut hardcore band. They opened the set with “Destroy Everything” which the fans took to heart. Many were upset that they were stuck on the second tier of the lower floor (the front section of the floor was limited to 100 people who got paper bracelets allowing them access up front) and decided to simply hop the rail. This continued into the second song “To The Threshold” as the circle pit in the front grew larger and larger. Jasta was very talkative during the brief set. In between shout outs to Cypress Hill’s Sen Dog (who was in the circle pit wearing a Black Label Society leather vest) the front man reminded the audience that they were on TV and that they were to get crazy. Hands down, Hatebreed (who I have never seen, but always wanted too) played the most high energy and brutal set of the night.
Hatebreed @ the 2009 Golden Gods Awards: Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA
The fourth band of the night was All That Remains. A lot of people in the section I was in seemed very upset that they were the next to last band. Another band I don’t know much about, the first song they played was not only very out of place, but rather terrible. Front man Philip Labonts vocals sounded weak and powerless. If Godsmack is Alice in Chains on their worst day, All That Remains is Godsmack after their worst week ever. As the crowd booed between songs, (something the crowd did a lot over the night. Metallica, Protest The Hero, and Atreyu front man Alex Varkatzas were all booed) the band shrugged it off and kept rolling. I will say this, each song (they played three total) seemed to get better, but really that’s just me trying to find something positive to say.
All That Remains - Golden Gods 2009: Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA
The night closed with a set that left many deaf (myself included) by Megadeth. The three song set list was voted on by fans. The legends opened with “Peace Sells”. With the bass line that doubles as the into music for MTV News, the band launched into the 1986 classic as many in the house went crazy. The song went right into the bands second number – “Sweating Bullets.” The band sounded tight as pits swirled and Mustaine sang the psycho vocals with his signature growl. The band closed their set with “Holy Wars…The Punishment Due”. This is one of my favorite Megadeth songs, and for the first time all night I wish I could hop the rail to get into the main pit. The band killed it as it cranked out the legendary thrash number. As fast as they came, the band left the stage much to the disappointment of many fans who paid expecting a longer set. With that, the first ever North American metal show came to an end. Make sure to check it out May 2nd on MTV2. Look for me bootlegging in the Lamb Of God t-shirt :)
Megadeth - Golden Gods 2009: Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA 04/07/09
Megadeth 04/07/09 – Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA
Corey Taylor of Slipknot DJing Before The 2009 Golden God Awards
Corey Taylor – Golden Gods 09: Club Nokia, Los Angeles CA
WWE Wrestler CM Punk Introducing Killswitch Engage 04/07/09
Killswitch Engage – Golden Gods 2009: Club Nokia – Los Angeles, CA 04/07/09