The Mettys 2019 Prove We Have The Best Metal Scene Ever


Photos byFred Sobottka, Chris Flicek, and Jessica Boldt

Silverstein and Hawthorne Heights were in town last night. If you know me, you know these are two of my favorites. Add the fact that Silverstein was celebrating fifteen years of their album “When Broken Is Easily Fixed” and you have a killer show that I just couldn’t miss. Or could I. Last night was also the third annual Mettys award show- an award show that highlights the best of the best of my metal family that is very near and dear to my heart. I’d be lying if I said that I didn’t think I’d make it to the Mettys. Honestly, up until a couple of weeks ago, my mind was made up and I was going to scream and cry along to every song from Hawthorne Heights and Silverstein. I don’t know what clicked or what changed but out of nowhere I just had this feeling that I wasn’t making the right decision. I’m the type of person that will always go with my gut so I sold the ticket to Silverstein and started working on my outfit for The Mettys. Dear everyone- go with your gut at all times. If I would have missed last night it would have been one of the biggest mistakes I make all year.

There’s something extremely amusing about walking into a venue and seeing hundreds of metal heads all decked out in suits and dresses. The Mettys are one of those events that is 100% what you make it. If you don’t want to dress up- that’s fine but honestly you’ll be out of place. People take this shit seriously and have fun with it just as they should. A Grammy-like award show for the local metal scene, the crowd is kind of a who’s who of local metal. With everyone from bands that were both nominated and not, people that you have pushed around in the pit a bit without knowing who they are, and the random person that is always at the shows but sitting behind the bar, this event gives you a chance to mingle with all of the people that you always see but never talk to. It’s truly a special night and you can feel that magic in the air the second you step foot in the venue.

With a red carpet complete with the flashing lights from the swarm of the best photographers the city has to offer, to the stage complete with the table full of goblet shaped awards with the lights whizzing around, it’s hard to not be utterly impressed by what this event accomplishes. The brainchild of Metalsota creator, good friend, and all around amazing guy- Bill Jelberg, The Mettys have grown over the years and, like a fine wine, they just keep getting better and bigger. I could go on and on about how amazing the atmosphere was or how amazing it was to see everyone dressed to the nines but, like many other shows and events, if you weren’t there, it would never make sense to you so what’s the point in me rambling on and on about it.

With thirty categories announced throughout the night, it would be a bit ridiculous for me to run down every single winner and tag along my thoughts on the win (which I know you want to hear– NOT!). That being said, there were definitely some highlights throughout the night that made a smile stretch on my face from ear to ear. One of those moments was when the kids (and I mean KIDS) of Agony Reigns got the award for “Best New Band of the Year”. Being a judge for this whole event, I can’t even begin to explain how hard it was to vote in this category. There were so many uberly talented bands nominated that it was easily one of the hardest votes I had to cast this year. The young KIDS (seriously– they are like 17-19 years old) took the stage and looked absolutely shocked at the win. Their acceptance speech was quick and painless but full of surprise and love and, just like that, my heart grew three sizes. Congrats boys!

Another obvious highlight was watching my friend and TCM photographer extraordinaire- Dave Rubene- win two epic awards. Him winning photographer of the year was no surprise. The amount of local musicians that use his pictures as their profile pictures on social media pretty much says it all. His pictures are always flawless and never fail to impress me. As amazing as that award was, what meant more was him winning the “Dig Deep Award”. This award goes to someone who has struggled through the past year but still came out on top and never gave up. With a health scare early last year, things got a little dicey for Dave. He kind of just left the scene with no notice or explanation. Although I knew what was going on, the scene did not but, in just months, he was back at it and popped back up. The speech to hand off the award to Dave was touching to say the least but Dave’s reaction was the crown jewel.  Dave was completely caught off guard and completely humbled. Cheers to you Dave– You seriously are an amazing man.

I’m not sure how Bill Jelberg did it but he was able to pick four of the best bands in the scene to perform. I would have been overwhelmed with all of the choices but he definitely nailed it. I finally got to see VVolf Mask perform and, let me tell you, I’ve been sleeping on these guys for far too long. They deserve your attention and I can’t wait to see them perform a full set.

Intrinsic dropped jaws with their powerful sound and stage presence. Although I knew they were going to be amazing, their power seemed to surprise some people and the chatter after their quick set was all about them.

Obviously Impaler killed it because, well, they are Impaler– I mean, come on, no explanation needed.

Beastface is a band I don’t see live enough although they play out all of the time and after last night’s quick set, I will be changing that.

From Impaler winning a lifetime achievement award to Buried Above Ground being retired from winning due to them becoming a band that is a bit bigger than the local scene right now, every band that took the stage to accept their award seemed humble and grateful and that just added to the magic of the night. One of the best parts of the night was the way Greg Chilton (who MC’s this event ever year and somehow tells the same stories every year– love you Greg) had something nice to say about every single person that stepped foot onto the stage. I think that fact right there says everything that needs to be said about this metal scene. We truly are one big, fucked up, weird looking, low-key alcoholic family with so much love in our hearts for everyone in the scene. I said it last year and I’ll say it again– are you lost and feeling lonely? Come on into the local metal scene. We are always accepting new brothers and sisters and would absolutely love to have you.

Oh yeah, did I mention that #oursceneisbetterthanyours ?

And the winners are…

Music Video Of The Year 
Promidal- “Transcendence”

Best Play Through Video Of The Year 
Jordan Fox- “Black out”

Song Of The Year 

EP Of The Year 
Druid- “Druid”

Album artwork of the Year 
Cymothoa-“Sometimes Dead is Better”

Best Album Production Of The Year 
By The Thousands

Best Lyric Video Of The Year 
Fail to Decay- “Delve”

Album Of The Year 
By The Thousands 
“Visions Of Inner Depth”

Producer Of The Year 
Will Maravelas

Best Live Video Of The Year 
Druid “ Setback”

Show Of The Year 
Top Secret Metal Fest 4

Photographer Of The Year 
David Rubene

Best Female Musician Of The Year 
Liz Ziegler

Best Vocalist Of The Year 
Michael Ersfeld

Guitarist Of The Year 
James Kunau

Bassist Of The Year 
Tyrone McCormick

Drummer Of The Year 
Zack HS

Regional Band Of The Year 
Fail to Decay

Director Of The Year 
John Wheeler

Break Out Band Of The Year 

Fans Choice Award 

Metal Venue of the Year
Lee’s Liquor Lounge

Best New Band of the Year 
Agony Reigns

Best Live Band Of The Year 

Heaviest Band of the Year
Glutton For Punishment

Band Of The Year 
By The Thousands

Fan of the Year
Daniel Klein

Recording Studio of the Year 
14:59 Studio

Dig Deep Award
David Rubene

Best Dressed Band