Drugs of Faith - The first song was way too loud from this power trio. Either the sound guy fixed things quickly or the five feet I moved back helped. From then on it was nicely loud hardcore punk. Fast, strong and some good moves from Black Fag, maybe Helmet, a touch of metal, and some edgy post-punk touches. Short, sweet and a bit better than average from what I hear.
Worn in Red - Speaking of post-punk, this band really succeeded in combining hard punk rock with lots of dynamic shifts of tempo and sound. They started the set by asking how long they had to play and joked that they wanted to do their jam set like Dark Star or some shit. As amusing as that was (and impressive that they know the quintessential jam song), as the set wore on, I thought these guys were creative enough to pull off a high energy Dark Star set. The two guitars played off each other well with the rhythm section pounding and two guys trading off vocal duties. This band can crossover into other rock terrains and turn on people who normally don't care for hardcore. Excellent set and I hope to see this Virginia band again some time.
The Mostly Dead - I have wanted to see these guys again, but one of the massive snowstorms canceled out one planned show. But now there was this one and an upcoming show with Underdog that I may check out. These locals are the classic four-piece with one guy singing with the rock power trio. The vocals are good in a style that reminds me of SSD and the bass player adds some Seven Seconds like backup vocals. Musically, this was the most straight ahead hardcore band tonight, but there were plenty of songs where the guitarist added some creative touches and the rhythm section adjusted tempos nicely. So there is plenty to sustain my interest. The crowd of 40-50 people were in to it, but it was very subdued for some reason. Even I who do not prefer to have to fend off bodies hurtling toward me wanted to see a little more enthusiasm. But the respect was there, so it was still a good set.
Quote of the Night: After the opening band finished a song... "That was a little rough around the edges, but we stopped at the same time so it's ok." Yes it was ok, until you gave us the self-critique. I always get on people for apologizing and want to remind bands of what Richard Thompson has said. Whenever he flubs up on his chords, he just says that was a jazz chord. It's jazz, it forgives all. If you are a punk or hardcore band, just say that's your homage to Flipper. People will buy it. Everyone loves Flipper and Will Shatter couldn't play three note bass line for more than two measures.