Bands I saw and overall impression:
- Saviours - Started off decently, but the set was definitely overlong and they were probably wasted. After a certain point, there was no doubt that the vocalists’ tattoos (arms/back/chest were covered with ink) were way more interesting than their set.
- Thou - Awesome and entrancing but way way too brief with only three songs played. The vocalist came on stage in a button-up shirt and as Rika put it ‘looked like a dad who just dropped off some kids’ but by the end looked like he was about to eat us all alive—dude didn’t blink even once.
- D.R.I. - HOLY SHIT!! I saw the legendary Dreh, enough said. How is it that (in my experience at least) older bands consistently outplay dudes that are half their age? This band has almost been around for thirty fucking years and it’s clear they haven’t skipped a beat since the old days.
- Magrudergrind - I’ve seen them more times than I can count on one hand and this is the very first time I haven’t had a stagediver jump on my head—what a relief! It’s always heart-warming to see friends get received well by an audience, no exception here.
- Brutal Truth - Too fucking brutal! An amp broke, some strings snapped, mic wires got tangled around some dude’s legs, monitors got kicked all over the stage, and I ended up drawing some blood. Unfortunately, because of technical difficulties, the set started getting long and honestly started dragging. On another note, I didn’t realize how fucking tall Dan Lilker is—at least 12 feet tall!
- Shrinebuilder - Sorry, this was just plain boring. Sometimes the music would pick up and I’d get interested but then shit started to drag again and I didn’t really get enough of a contact high at all to enjoy it like others seemed to. It appeared I wasn’t the only one with this opinion either as others were slowly exiting the venue as well. I’d rather have seen Vitus or Sleep, to be perfectly honest.
Funny story—I almost didn’t get my Express Pass wristband because of my last name. Why? Because to get the wristband you had to be a fan of Scion A/V Metal on facebook and as it happens, I have my last name written correctly on facebook, using the non-english letter ‘š’ as the first letter of my last name. Turns out, whatever they used to collect the names doesn’t recognize the letter and either my name wasn’t on the paper lists they had or it was somewhere at the end so I had to explain to four different people that yeah, I really did follow the rules exactly. They eventually believed me, but I found it funny that something like that almost cheated me out of a wristband, well, that wasn’t super useful anyway.