After sitting in traffic for forty five minutes to go under ten miles, I was happy when I arrived at The Cabooze. The door guy gave me a wristband as he welcomed me back to the venue that I see to be frequenting the most right now. The gal at the ticket counter stamped my wrist without any questions asked and I was in. After sitting in the horrendous traffic that happens when the MN DOT decides to shut down a major ramp onto a major freeway, I didn’t care what show I was at, I just wanted to be at a show.
Unfortunately, due to my late arrival, I missed the opening local Dead In The Water. What a bummer since I had honestly never even heard of these guys before. After talking to the promoter for the show, I came to find out that it was their first show ever and that made me feel even worse for missing it. My apologies to Dead In The Water. I promise to catch you guys soon!
The first band I did catch were my boys in Royal’z. I never miss a chance to see these guys live so them being on this already stacked bill was just the icing on the cake. Their set, although short, was exactly what I wanted it to be. Their brand of almost rap-metal came off as clean and the banter between band members was perfect. The growing crowd seemed into to their set but also seemed to be reserving their energy for the other bands coming up and I quickly understood why.
The first of the touring bands to take the stage was Enterprise Earth. Although I had never heard these guys’ music, I had heard their name and seen the buzz all over Facebook. I was interested to see why people were so hyped on these guys and, within the first song, I figured it out. This deathcore band from Washington hit the stage with a sense of fury that mirrored the break in the crowd. Within the first song there was a sweaty pit of people in front of the stage that didn’t let up throughout Enterprise Earth’s short set. Singer Dan Watson had a truly amazing voice. He hit the highest of highs right after hitting some of the lowest of lows and his blood curdling screams were enough to make the hair on my neck stand up. The set was far too short and left me wanting more from this band. This is definitely one of those bands where I mean it when I say keep your eyes on them. They’re about to break through the pack and rise to the top.
Up next was Gideon, a metal band from Alabama. These guys are a staple in many people’s playlists and that was made clear by the way the audience erupted within the first song. Although these guys are labeled as a Christian band (which if you know me, you know this is a huge turn off) they don’t make it obvious and don’t do prayer circles on stage like so many other Christian metal bands I’ve seen. Their set was for everyone and singer Daniel McWhorter encouraged people to come up and sing in the microphone. Although only a couple of youngsters seemed to take him up on his offer, there were more than enough bodies flying all over the place.
I have seen Gideon multiple times before but last night something finally stuck with me and I got it. Gideon’s music leans a bit more towards the hardcore side of the spectrum than the other bands of last night and that definitely helped them stand out after a band as good as Enterprise Earth and on the amazing line-up of last night. The energy of the band never faltered and, even though few people took Daniel up on the offering of the microphone, the band didn’t let it effect them. They seemed truly appreciative of the fact that people took time out of the busy lives to see them on a Tuesday night. Their love for the audience last night stood out more than the previous times I had seen these guys. The energy, the crowd, the love– all of these factors add up to the Gideon set I’ve ever seen.
Ice Nine Kills was next and completely caught me off guard. Singer Spencer Charnas admitted to the crowd after couple of songs that the whole band had been fighting a bug of some sort and were all feeling a bit under the weather. Honestly, I couldn’t tell and after he said that I could help but wonder what one of their shows would be like when the band members were at 100%. The amount of energy these guys had was immeasurable and the crowd tried their best to match it. With an endless stream of crowd surfers making their way to the stage, the band never missed a beat. Even as kids were ushered onto the stage by security since there was only a tiny gap between the crowd and stage, the members of Ice Nine Kills welcomed them onto the stage and patiently waited for them to make their next move of jumping back into the crowd. Even though I walked into the show not being a huge fan of Ice Nine Kills, I left with a new appreciation of these guys. I may even go so far as to say that they turned me into a fan. Sure, their music still left me wanting a bit more from them but their live show had me sold. When they announce another show in the area, you best believe that I will be there.
Rounding out the show last night was Chelsea Grin. I have been a fan of these guys for awhile now and, although I have seen them before, it has been awhile. Chelsea Grin gave the thinning crowd their daily dose of straight up deathcore with a side of pure energy and ferocity. Singer Alex Koehler prowled from side to side of the stage as the other members of the band stayed fairly stationary. Honestly, the band didn’t have to move much, their music gave off enough energy to keep the exhausted crowd moving. Alex seemed to know when the crowd needed that extra push to keep the energy going and, much like the rest of the bands, he encouraged the young audience to do whatever the music made them want to do. The band powered through their set but didn’t let details fall to the wayside. Although there wasn’t much banter between band members or even the band and the crowd, you could feel love in the air. It was clear that Chelsea Grin appreciated the crowd participation and the crowd appreciated Chelsea Grin for putting on a killer set.
With a mix of headbangers, moshers, and people just standing around the edges of the venue, Chelsea Grin ended the night on a high note and you could feel that in the atmosphere of The Cabooze. I feel bad for anyone who decided to skip out on their set because, even though all of the other bands had done great, Chelsea Grin proved why they were headlining this tour and absolutely killed it.
To the untrained ear, last night’s show may have sounded like the same thing over and over again but, to me, it was a very eclectic night of some of the best bands throughout the spectrum of the metal scene. Being able to see a show this great and still be home and in bed by 11:00 is a great night if you ask me.