Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Local Spotlight: We Met Aliens at the Middle East

On August 25, 2009, I visited the Middle East Upstairs in Cambridge, MA to check out a showcase of local metal bands. It's been awhile since I've been to a metal show and it is always nice to check out what is going on at the local level. Unfortunately, I missed the first band The Arkham White but from what I've heard on their myspace, they seem like a solid mix of death metal and thrash. The first band that I was actually able to see was The Bathory Silence. The band played a very technical leaning combination of death metal and hardcore that contained some excellent breakdowns and guitar soloing. The drums were solid and kept the songs chugging at breakneck speed. The only complaint I had was that the songs sounded like more of a jumble of parts than cohesive structures. In this way, they reminded me a lot of Glass Casket.

Next up was Scourge, who were more of a traditional thrash metal band than the rest but still contained a death metal influence which seemed to be the theme of the night. I wasn't a big fan of the vocals and the songs seemed to blend together after awhile. The guitars were ok but I felt like there was a lot more that could have gone on. For the last song, the singer and guitarist switched places which resulted in a more accessible sound but one that I actually found to be more favorable. The song they played sounded more simplistic but memorable, reminding me of Pantera.

The final band was We Met Aliens who were probably my favorite of the bunch. They possessed a technical metalcore sound along the lines of The Red Chord or Between the Buried and Me. The songs jumped out at you more than the other bands on the bill and they added some synth and clean vocals to break things up. "Contaminated" was one song in particular that caught my attention and served as an excellent example of what the band is capable of. Their formula didn't always work with some songs dragging on longer than necessary but they were certainly capable of destroying your eardrums while holding your attention. They also gave out free copies of their demo at the end of the show which is something that every up-and-coming group should be doing. The demo which contains standouts "Contaminated" and "Shattered Ego" is also available for free on their myspace so make sure to grab it. Definitely a band I will be looking out for in the future. On a final note, I have to mention that they managed to fit in a cover of Tim & Eric's "Petite Feet" which was quite hilarious.

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