Drowning Pool unLUCKy Veteran’s Day performance
One night after GWAR bloodied the Boise Knitting Factory, the venue was prepped and ready for the Veteran’s Day onslaught by Texas hard rock contingent, Drowning Pool. The quartet is out in support of its re-issued 2-disc deluxe Unlucky 13th Anniversary edition of its 2001 debut album, Sinner. The new edition released November 11, and features the band’s signature hit, “Bodies” which helped launch Drowning Pool’s early success.
The unLUCKy 13th Anniversary Sinner Tour features from New Zealand’s Like a Storm, Australia’s A Breach of Silence, and Denver’s Red Tide Rising. Local hard rock outfit, Half the World kicked off the evening’s run. Formerly a quintet, Half the World performed as a quartet for the show, and the crowd was immediately engaged and enthusiastic.
Red Tide Rising took the stage as the youngest band on the bill, but there was little evidence they are not already seasoned performers despite this being the band’s first major tour. The quartet, featuring brothers and founders, Matthew and Andrew Whiteman on vocals and guitars respectively, made a definitive statement of confidence, offering performances of songs from their two albums, Inferno and The Rising, including the tracks “The Otherside”, “Unholy”, “The Rising” and the set closer and fan favorite, “Welcome to Zombietown”. The band’s rhythm section, bassist Michael LeBois and drummer Matt Guerin, helped propel each song, and the unassuming Matthew Whiteman incited positive crowd interaction like a veteran.
Australia’s A Breach of Silence hail from Brisbane, Queensland, and come across like Suicide Silence meets Mercyful Fate. The latter in large part due to bassist Blair Layt’s King Diamond-like falsettos. Frontman Rhys Flannery offers up the harsh vocal delivery in contrast. The band is touring support of its sophomore effort, The Darkest Road. The band’s performance was crowd-rousing, energetic and entertaining. Though most at the venue had never heard the band, they quickly earned a new audience.
Like a Storm moved from Auckland to Canada a few years ago, determined to bring their unique hard rock style to North America. Fronted by three brothers, Chris (vocals, guitar), Matt (lead guitar, vocals) and Kent (bass, vocals), the band brings fantastic energy and lively banter to the stage. Nashville drummer Jesse Shelley, handled the drum work as the band performed a set which included cover’s of Coolio’s “Gangsta’s Paradise” and AC/DC’s “TNT”, as well as their own songs like “Chemical Infatuation”, “Never Surrender”, “Just Save Me” and the hits, “Wish You Hell” and “Love the Way You Hate Me”. The latter song featured Chris using Australian native instrument, the didgeridoo, something he also used to start the show. The band will be releasing its next album, Awaken the Fire in early 2015.
The reason for the evening, Drowning Pool, gave fans everything they might have been hoping for, with a tight and heavy set which included the entirety of the 2001 Sinner album. Sinner was not only the band’s debut release, but the only album to feature original vocalist, Dave Williams before his untimely death of cardiomyopathy in 2002. The new 2-disc deluxe edition of the album features demos from the album including some never before released. In talking with guitarist CJ Pierce prior to the show, he said the band, which still features the other original members, Stevie Benton (bass) and Mike Luce (drums) wanted to pay respect to Williams.
Drowning Pool opened Tuesday night’s set with non-Sinner fan favorites like, “Think” and “Step Up” from 2004’s Desensitized album. They also performed “Feel Like I Do” from 2010’s self-titled album, and from the band’s latest album, Resilience, they performed “One Finger and a Fist”. After that, it was all Sinner. Vocalist Jasen Moreno who joined Drowning Pool for the Resilience album, was dynamic and powerful in his delivery of the old material as well as the new. his energy could barely be contained and his attitude was contagious.
The entire evening was a high-energy affair, and all of the bands absorbed a heavy dose of fan appreciation from a decent size Tuesday night gathering. All of the band’s were noticeably active at the merch tables, taking time to chat, take pictures, and simply hang out.
All photos © 2014 Katarzyna Cepek Photography.