Tag Archives: march metal madness 2012

Hank III in Concert (3/17/2012)

Hank 3 is the grandson of the legendary Hank Williams who was a Country Music super stars super star.  The name has been held in high esteem for decades and the family name has kept in music for generations now so it would be awesome to see for the very first time this much acclaimed performer. Tonight’s show was being presented by Metal Wreckage and was totally free and I found that to be a better way to spend my Saint Patrick’s Day than just dealing with the binge drinkers all around the city. Click the logo below to be taken to the full concert article and a whole lot of photos, then come back to the blog posting to see some of the side images we captured for your viewing pleasure.

Click Image for Concert Report & Photos

Artist: Hank III
Venue: Gramercy Theatre (New York, NY)
Opener: n/a
Date: 3/17/2012
Label: Megaforce Records

Written By: Ken Pierce (copyright 2012) for PiercingMetal.com

It was a very busy weekend in New York City and while it was Saint Patrick’s Day I had begun my celebrating in the most un-Irish of manners by seeing the Finnish Glam Rockers ½ Naked perform down at Riff Clothing. That was fun as I am a fan of their sound and now it was time to continue the musical revelry by heading up to the Gramercy Theatre to enjoy a free performance by Hank 3. For those who are not in the know, Hank 3 is actually Hank Williams III and he is the grandson of the legendary Country Music icon Hank Williams. He is also the son of Hank Williams Jr. and hence the “III” that he utilizes. A lot of my friends are fans of the musician but I had to admit that I was walking into this one on the blind side but still no less interested at all. The whole thing was hosted by Metal Wreckage and it was great to find myself invited to participate in the fun. Here is how the show went down for those who somehow missed out.

When I walked into the Gramercy I ran into a fellow photographer who had seen H3 a number of times in the past and he informed me that we would be treated to not only the two Metal sets that had been announced but also a Country one and that intrigued me all the more. Since I was technically a newbie, I was not going to be aware of any of his songs and I would just have to let my musical mind digest the whole evening as an educational experience. That’s not a bad thing to do sometimes. For the Country set, H3 appeared with a full on compliment of players in terms of a lap steel player, a banjo, a fiddle, a stand up bass and a drummer hidden behind all the amps. Hank 3 played the acoustic guitar and obviously sang for this rousing and energetic performance. I didn’t catch all the names of the tunes from this part of the set but I did get some of the ones that I liked the most such as “Ghost To A Ghost” which was a slower almost bossa nova sounding tune. It was interesting. Two more of the fun numbers that I liked the most were “Smoke And Wine” and his “Dick In Dixie” with the latter being my favorite of them all based on the lyrical content. The Country group played about 35-40 minutes and when they were done Hank asked the house to play some background music so they could set up for the next presentation. The interesting thing was that there was no real “lengthy break” between sets as we often find at the shows and more like a ten minute reprieve before they would go at it again.

Hank 3 returned with his hair pulled out of the braid he wore and there was no cowboy hat this time and very minimal light. Instead there were images and video being shown on the screen behind him and this was now the Attention Deficit Domination set and more along the lines of a Stoner/Doom presentation. It was very heavy and crushing at times so if you were just walking in now you would have never known this dude had just finished a beer drinking, six gun shooting Country set. There was a lot of an Alice In Chains vibe going on in this set and I would later learn how the album itself was dedicated to the memory of Layne Staley, so I guess its musical makeup aligned with that. I felt that this set’s mission was to put you in a certain “head” while it was delivered and if you watched the crowd everyone was moving with it accordingly. This seemed to be a longer set than the Country one or perhaps it only felt like that since the songs were longer than the often quick paced flair of the previous. Either way I was really enjoying myself. I would venture to guess that he played the whole album by this project of his. After it finished some running around on the stage commenced as Hank 3 and his band mates prepared us for the 3 Bar Ranch set of the night.

3 Bar Ranch was the “Country Metal” set or as my peers in the venue had called it the Death Metal set. Hank was joined this time by a second guitarist and each of them sported cowboy hats and wore bandanas that shielded their faces from the audience. Hank was also wearing some kind of armor chest plate which really brought the whole grim identity to life all the more. Musically speaking these were some true Death Metal riffs and as I had been able to see the set list that was on the stage can say that almost every tune seemed to deal with being a cattle herder. As we found in the previous set, Hank would sing or growl his way through each and every number and occasional trade solo riffs with his partner in Metal crime. I would normally say how well worth your money this show was but it was free so it was actually beyond worth it. The music from this particular set came from the album “Cattle Callin’” and it was as expected much different from what we had heard before this set began. After they finished this part, Hank said goodnight and then his guitarist Davey McElfresh remained, now unmasked and did some guitar flair for another fifteen minutes or so. The interesting thing to learn after the show was that this was also the fiddle player from the earlier Country set. It was closing in on midnight and the fully packed Gramercy had enjoyed a 2 plus hour show for nothing. What a way to spend a Saturday night. Hank popped out after all was said and done and met with fans at the photo pit barricade. He posed for photos and signed things. Since he did not use signature guitar picks he actually scribbled three lines on the ones he used if someone asked him for a pick. That was pretty cool and is a total memory at the end of the day.

Thanks again to Metal Wreckage and the folks at Red Music, Stache Media and of course Hank 3 for giving back to the fans. This kind of stuff is awesome and just another reason that NYC is an amazing place to enjoy music. So much does go on and can go on at any given time. I will definitely hit another Hank 3 show if the schedule permits me to. He was that entertaining.

Set List (partial):
1. Ghost To A Ghost
2. Smoke & Wine
3. Dick In Dixie
4. Now There’s A Bull
5. 37 Heifers
6. Angus Of Death
7. Cow Sold
8. Countin’ Cows
9. Longhorn
10. Y-Bar Ranch
11. Lot 53
12. Cuttin’ Hay
13. Branded
14. Square Bailor
15. Mad Cow
16. Unknown

Official Website: http://www.hank3.com/

Amazon.com Code:

Continue reading Hank III in Concert (3/17/2012)

1/2 Naked in Concert (3/17/2012)

It’s been awhile since we’ve found our no longer new Finnish friends in Naked doing a New York City gig so when the chance to check them out once more came up I was very happy to participate in the fun. It was St. Patrick’s Day in New York and you can read that as overall mayhem and serious drinking that leaves people numb for a couple of days afterward. It’s honestly not a day that I generally head into the city, but since I needed to be there for the evening’s Hank 3 show, I replied to the text from “The Muff” and said that he could count on our coverage. What better way to celebrate one’s Irish heraldry than with some good old fashioned Finnish Glam Rock. The interesting thing about this show was that it would be held at the Riff Clothing store and be a “stripped down” version of the band (meaning only The Muff and his other guitarist Zack Schleidecker). Please click the logo below to see the full on concert report and enjoy the photos taken, but then get back to this blog posting to enjoy the side images from the event and some video that was taken.

Click Logo To Read The Concert Review

Artist: ½ Naked
Venue: Riff Clothing (New York, NY)
Opener: n/a
Date: 3/17/2012
Label: T-Bag Records

Written By: Ken Pierce (copyright 2012) for PiercingMetal.com

Today was Saint Patrick’s Day and while I initially planned on staying as far away from the Big Apple as was humanly possible, I instead ended up using the day to do some coverage of the free Hank 3 show that was going to happen at the Gramercy Theatre later on in the evening. While preparing my camera gear and making sure that the trusty Smartphone was updated with some preliminary notes, a text from our Finnish friend in music, the one and only Muff appears on the screen. Apparently, he and fellow Naked guitarist Zack Schleidecker were doing some stripped down gigs and this afternoon at Riff Clothing would be one of them. Riff Clothing is a new store located in the space formerly used by the Morrison Hotel gallery which was formerly the C.B.G.B.’s Gallery in case you were wondering. With the start time being 4pm for their set I had to get a move on and fortunately I would arrive at the very second the guys were starting their set.

Initially I thought that this would be an acoustic presentation but it was electric and that found the songs to be very close to what they sound like with the full band doing them. They started off with “Got A Feeling” and followed that with “Sonic High”. The latter being a tune that was written about New York City. “I Know” would precede “Powerblind” and that was a song that The Muff described as being their version of Cheap Trick meets Abba. For this set the guys were seated on a zebra patterned couch way in the back of the shop. There was even a drum kit behind them which found me thinking that the full on command of the Naked band could foreseeably do a regular gig here if they wanted to. The crowd was sadly on the small side but good enough for a Saturday afternoon on a day where the larger part of the city is only focused on getting trashed beyond belief. The Muff kept the gathered folks engaged and talked to them periodically. One of the stories he lined out before “High On Blue Love” was how he had written the tune the day after taking Viagra. Pretty funny stuff.

Before “Hallelujah” The Muff told the fans that while the song was named this often thought of religious term, that they were not a Christian band and it was not a religious song. I have to say that one or two of the lines in there would make a person think otherwise but it’s just clever wordplay and not soap box preaching. The set was a brief one and ran only eight numbers but it was free and it was a nice day to be out doing anything so who could argue with that. Muff said how their last song “Revolution” was one of their first singles but I do not recall what album he said it came from. All I own is their super fun “Double Down” release. After the show Zack and The Muff stopped to talk to the friends who had come out and to meet the new fans that had wandered in. There is a lot of cool stuff to see at Riff Clothing and it’s owned by Andy Hilfiger (the brother of the internationally famous Tommy). I did a quick browse and some stuff seemed nice and cheap while other items were a bit more pricy. I admired the collection of Rock books that were for sale and the fact that they were playing Led Zeppelin on the turntable when the show by Naked, err “1/2 Naked” was over. Yes, I did say turntable. Remember those?

One of the shop staffers told me that there are shows like this often and I would love to catch some more of them if the schedule allows me the chance to do it. That’s a cool idea in my book. Anything that keeps the Rock and Roll spirit alive works for me. Now I would take my leave of the guys and head further uptown for something to eat and maybe drink on this fine St. Patrick’s Day, wandering the city as a sober Rick Grimes amidst The Walking Drunks. Wish me luck, Hank 3 was on at 9pm and I had hours to go.

Set List:
1. Got A Feeling
2. Sonic High
3. I Know
4. Powerblind
5. Reset
6. High On Blue Love
7. Hallelujah
8. Revolution

Official Website: www.nakedofficial.net

Amazon.com Code:

I shot a couple of videos with the ever trusty Panasonic Lumix to make sure that more of the bands fans would be able to enjoy the very intimate appearance. The first clip is “Sonic High” which I have mentioned is one of my favorite tunes by the band from their “Double Down” CD.

I also snared the guys doing “High On Blue Love” which Muff had just told the story about his trying Viagra and coming up with this song. Sigh. Musicians.  It still made for a funny tale.

After the set was done I snared some candid shots of The Muff and Zack. Sometimes The Muff was paying attention and sometimes Zack. It was casual and worked just the same.

1/2 Naked: Zack and The Muff
1/2 Naked: Zack and The Muff
1/2 Naked: Zack and The Muff
1/2 Naked: Zack and The Muff

Now let’s take a look at some of the wonderful musical toys that let these guys do their thing.  First up is the stuff of The Muff.

Muff's Guitar and Amp

and now Zack’s axe.  Hey that rhymes……

Zack's Guitar

A good batch of effects are always nice to have around in a Rock and Roll band, and The Muff had a couple.

The Muff's Effects

Zack on the other hand had quite a few more.  He told me that he made the silver one that is seen in the center….

Zack's Effects

Let’s check out some of the other stuff that I saw at the show.  Here is the show poster.  The store managers would later have the guys sign a copy of this.

The Show Poster

In the event you wondered whose guitar case this was, the answer is very clear.

The Muff's Guitar Case

Thanks to the advances of technology, the entire show was being recorded via iPhone.  I did a couple of clips myself with the Panasonic Lumix that you saw earlier in the blog posting.

Recorded For Your Viewing Pleasure

These boots were made for rocking.

The Boots of The Muff

There were some new fans for the bands music as we found with this cool group of St. Patrick’s Day revelers.   3/4’s of them made sure to tell me that they were NOT Irish.  I will not hold that against them.

1/2 Naked Fans

Since they stopped their own adventuring to support the band, I made sure to capture a shot of them with the guys.

1/2 Naked Fans with 1/2 Naked

Riff Clothing seems to be a cool place, so I asked one of their staff, the lovely Vicky, to pose by some drums.  Led Zeppelin’s “Moby Dick” was playing at the time and that was what kicked off the idea.

Riff Clothing's Vicky

I needed some horns from the lass of course since this is a largely Metal site.  Look closely at the image, there is a slight illusion going on.

Riff Clothing's Vicky

Vicky and Rick of Riff Clothing give the PiercingMetal Man a curious glance.

Riff Clothing's Vicky and Rick

After the band finished they brought out some really awesome sugar cookies.  I had a couple and loved each and every bite. Oh yes and let me not forget to showcase a quick visual of the storefront so you know about it.

Riff Clothing NYC

Riff Clothing Cookies

 Now it was time for me to brave the city streets and head uptown.  My plan was to find a space for a pint of some kind and some food but not to overdo it.  I still had a show to cover at 9pm.  As I said in the concert review, this part of my day was like being in an episode of “The Walking Drunk”, err I mean “Dead”.

Outside McSorley's 3/17/12

Lines of green at every glance.  Step wisely and carefully lest some green beer get on your leather.

Outside Bull McCabe's 3/17/12

There were a ton of pub crawls going on today.  I was glad to see the bars doing so well.

Outside Pete's Tavern 3/17/12

and then……….

 

Deicide in Concert (3/3/2012)

The bringers of evil in Deicide were continuing their “To Hell With God” tour that was begun early last year when they released the album by the same name. It was almost a year to the day that we last caught the as this very same venue and for this tour they would bring along Jungle Rot, Abigail Williams and Lecherous Nocturne as their supporting acts. For this show I wanted to see everyone involved and made sure to get to the venue just in time for the lead off act and you can read the full on concert report by clicking the logo below. Then keep on scrolling in the blog posting to enjoy the usual gamut of additional photos that we only present in this particular space.

Continue reading Deicide in Concert (3/3/2012)

Y&T @ B.B. King Blues Club (3/2/2012)

If you are a fan of the good stuff, and I mean the rock solid, no nonsense classic Heavy Rock then you just have to be a fan of the band Y&T and if you are not up on what this band brings to the table I feel really sorry for you. It’s really that good and that much of an experience when they come into town and you are always able to count on a lengthy show with numerous songs that you will find as favorites after you leave. Tonight the guys were back in NYC for the first time since August of 2010, and most know how difficult 2011 began for the guys with the passing of founding bassist Phil Kennemore. Though difficult to move on from, the never ending quest in Rock and Roll requires that we be strong and continue on. This would be exactly what we found happening tonight at the B.B. King Blues Club. Scroll past the logo below to dig into our full concert article and a number of photos.

Artist: Y&T
Venue: B.B. King Blues Club (New York, NY)
Opener: The Noise Factor
Date: 3/2/2012
Label: Frontiers Records

It’s been a little over a year and a half since we last found Y&T delivering some Hard Rock justice in New York City and I have to say that their return was a welcome thing. They last played here in August of 2010 and at the time their bassist Phil Kennemore had been diagnosed with cancer and was being temporarily replaced by Brad Lang. Sadly, the music world would lose Phil in the beginning of 2011 and while the band would keep on moving, they were certainly going to need a little time off after this terrible deal of the cards. Founder Dave Meniketti eventually appeared on “That Metal Show” and told the world that they would indeed be pressing on soon enough. Fast forwarding to 2012, the band had offered their fill in bassist Brad Lang the job of official member and he now joins John Nymann, Mike Vanderhule and Meniketti with the business of bringing the band’s sound to the masses. Tonight’s show was at the obvious B.B. King Blues Club and while there was an opener this evening, I opted to hang out with some of the members of the Official Y&T Forums because they have been super supportive of my writings over the last few years. The group of us all arrived and Y&T went on within minutes. Talk about timing.

The show would start almost at the ring of 8pm, and while that might strike you as a little early for the headliner, it actually makes sense since there was a later evening event being hosted at the venue and that would be the Hip Hop Karaoke. Like a lit firecracker, Y&T launched into “Black Tiger” as their opener and it’s a great way to kick off the night. It would be followed by a tune that the audience seems to love singing in “Don’t Wanna Lose” and I had to say that these melodies were a great way to close out the hectic work week for the fans. “Lipstick And Leather” has always been a favorite of mine even thought it might not be one of the bands most revered classics by some when compared to their older stuff but I still love it. The guys sounded on fire and it has to be the fact that they can feel that energy from their fans. There were no tables set up on the floor this evening and the crowd was able to get right up and close to the action. It was a hit laden set for the ones who were well-schooled in the band’s sound and an education for the ones in need of some lessons. It was without question that everyone was into the show and when I turned my attention over to the sound board I caught glimpse of Eddie Trunk who was standing with some venue heads and Mike Orlando who is the guitarist of the new band with Mike Portnoy, The Adrenaline Mob. Their new album is coming out or had just come out, I am not too sure right now. Speaking of new albums, the last Y&T album is called “Facemelter” and it came out in the middle of 2010. They would pepper in three tracks from the release and they fell in perfectly with the bands established gems. Let’s hope for some new material soon and tunes that stand up to what the fans crave most from the band.

Dave would speak to the crowd a few times over the course of the gig and I guess that someone in front yelled something about Phil for he replied how they missed him as well. Then another must have wanted a guitar pick and he stressed that they were not Y&T branded picks but instead just Dunlop ones. That’s too bad since I know people eat those up like candy. Of course it does get expensive but maybe if enough people write to the company they will endorse him for such coolness. I think we can make that happen if we want to. I’m pretty sure Nymann has them though. Overall this was a powerful night and one that was loaded with some monster guitar playing and tunes that stayed with you long after the show has ended. Comparatively speaking there was a lot of the same stuff that we got the last time around in terms of the set list composition but of course the tunes had been switched and swapped around a little bit. For this gig we did get three more songs than the one in 2010 and that was great. As they checked their time they must have realized that they had some play room and added in “Midnight In Tokyo” and “Open Fire” which were not originally on the set list that I snapped a photograph of at the beginning of the show.

Eddie Trunk would hit the stage to get the guys some extra applause before their encore which was “Rescue Me” and that was all she wrote. Since there was another event coming in we all had to get out of the main venue but Dave said that they were going to go over to Lucille’s next door and hang with the fans for a little while. Tomorrow the band performs a benefit show for a police officer up at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center with Twisted Sister. That should be a great one but I cannot attend as I will be at Deicide at the Gramercy Theatre which is more my stomping grounds than up in Poughkeepsie. Hopefully we can get another Y&T show before more than a year passes us by the next time around. Interestingly enough, a friend had been wondering and decided to muse aloud about what a gig for the band would be like at either Gramercy Theatre or Irving Plaza and I replied, why mess with what works. Everything is around us in Times Square and Y&T surely seems to love playing this particular room. If it isn’t broke don’t fix it. Come back soon guys, we’ll be waiting on you.

Set List:
1. Black Tiger
2. Don’t Wanna Lose
3. Lipstick and Leather
4. Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark
5. Midnight in Tokyo (not listed but performed)
6. Mean Streak
7. Summertime Girls
8. Shine On
9. Blind Patriot
10. Winds of Change
11. Open Fire (not listed but performed)
12. Contagious
13. I’m Coming Home
14. I’ll Cry for You
15. Eyes of a Stranger
16. Dirty Girl
17. Hurricane
18. Drum Solo
19. Squeeze
20. I Believe in You
21. Forever
22. Rescue Me

Official Website: http://www.yandtrocks.com

I know you expected to see this so here we go again. The ever interesting marquee of the B.B. King Blues Club as it announces the return of Y&T to their stage. Part of me said that I could have used an older shot, but then a friend corrected me and said that they finally were using the “&” sign as opposed to a “+” and by George I think he was right.

Welcome To NYC Y&T

I have mentioned how much I love the show posters that the venue has been doing for awhile now and in addition to my presentation of the venue shot I always try to get the poster as well.

As the night drew to a close I got the ever trusty Lumix ready and recorded the band doing “Forever”. My goal here being to inspire the masses who might not yet be aware that they need to catch this band while they are still active. Let’s face it, I don’t see a lot of these groups being around in another ten years. Of course I hope I am wrong.

Here’s the great bass drum head that was on Mike Vanderhule’s kit. I just had to snap a photo of it for you all to see.

OK, so this next part was rather amusing to me.  After the show was over, the band had announced that they would be hanging out in Lucille’s and signing autographs or just meeting with their fans. That was cool to know they were doing. They had to move it over to Lucille’s since there was a late night Hip Hop Karaoke event going on, so the Rockers had to make way for the Rappers. Such is the way it works in the city at the venues nowadays. Two things in one night since its so expensive to stay open. Anyways, as I stood there making some side pleasantries, I was approached by a very lovely girl who asked me where The 69 Eyes were. Now this inquiry stunned me because its the last band that I ever expected to find people asking about at a show by Y&T. Anyways, when I cleared the air and told them they were mistaken about the Helsinki Vampires I snapped a few photos of their pretty selves. “From Russia with Love”?  Most assuredly.

Victoria

A few more of Victoria for you…..

and her friend Lana….

Lana

Double vision.

Out of the corner of my eye I caught the bands now official bassist Brad Lang and asked him if he would mind coming over and doing a few photos as well. Oddly enough he had no problem with this request of mine. That was nice.

Brad and the Lovelies

One more for Brad fans everywhere….