Photos by: Julius Richardson
Words by: Shadow Editor
This was a busy week for Rock and Metal concerts in Huntsville, Alabama. We typically get a couple of the fall tours that roam through here for more of the mainstream Rock and Metal bands on the scene, so this was to be expected. After surviving the inaugural Exit 111 Festival in Manchester, TN and also living the Alice Cooper experience earlier that week in Huntsville, we we’re ready to close out the year with one last gig.
FFDP comes to town hot on the heels of another blockbuster album “And Justice for None”, yes I know they are not everybody’s cup of tea, but you can’t deny their impact on the scene. Credit where credit is due, we all have opinions I do understand and respect the ones of yours as well.
A good night to get over the hump, as Wednesday’s always suck but despite this we had a good turn out at the arena, no it wasn’t anywhere close to sell out show but fun nonetheless. First opening band of the night was one I have not heard before “Fire From The Gods“. The guys have been around since 2010, and hail from Austin, Texas. With a pretty cool tribal logo as the band’s name in the background, and an intense singer, these guys take control and start to kick things into high gear early on. They put on a good uptempo set as a precursor to Bad Wolves, a little similar in sound minus the more melodic stuff that BW brings. Not a bad band, one we hope polishes their sound a bit more for the future. Fun factoid these guys got signed onto FFDP Zoltan’s Bathory label Eleven Seven music in 2019.
Next up was one band we had looked forward to seen in person, and that is Bad Wolves. Once again another group that has been hitting the charts running the last few years, and touring relentlessly off their very successfull debut “Disobey” in 2018. Yes I know the cover of “Zombie” put them on the map, but other strong cuts like “Remember When” and “Here Me Now” did the same. But haters will say they sound like FFDP, sure a bit but is that a bad thing? Again credit where credit is due, FFDP has hit a fan base that obviously enjoys their music even if some call it Pantera-esque. The point is this is Rock music as we have said before there’s tons of it out there too much to go around and cover and believe me on that why not support the bands actively making an impact on the scene? Even if they may not be your cup of tea? Give them a chance yeah?
To be honest with you I thought Bad Wolves set was the best of the night, and singer Tommy Vext electric energy set the bar high from the git go and never let go from there. Yeah I know some folks don’t like his takes on political topics, or mental health issues or whatever. But if I’m being honest these are topics that are affecting millions of human beings on this planet every day, and why should we be afraid to talk about them? The guy is a survivor himself and to infuse all that energy in their lyrics and in their music just adds more credence and potency to their work. They put on a great show with their typical radio hits on hand as well as a few cuts from their recently released sophomore album “N.A.T.I.O.N”, specifically “Killing Me Slowly” a favorite off that album. End result is pure joy and emotion as all the guys seemed very humble and ready to continue growing on their success. Don’t sleep on them or their Euro tour to start the year!!! You won’t be let down!!!
Canadian Rockers Three Days Grace came on next and one particularly I had not seen live before. Hard to imagine since they have been around since 1997, crazy to think about it what they have overcome and are still relevant today. Kudos to them. Course their typical crowd pleasers we’re all displayed very well, hits like “Pain”, “I Hate Everything About You” and “Never Too Late”. They put on a good show, not nearly same energy as Bad Wolves but it was solid setlist with some old school classic mix with their newer material. I expected “Right Left Wrong” to be performed but that was not the case. Regardless good set from the guys.
FFDP finally comes on stage ahead of their monster production set, promptly and ready to ignite the night. Front man Ivan Moody seems in good spirits after his well documented battles with his own demons; trials and tribulations he has seemed to conquer, but as he put it during the show that battle never truly ends. Way to connect with then fan base. Comes across as a genuine dude.
Overall the band sounds pretty tight. With “Lift Me Up” and “Sham Pain” the crowd keeps the Rocking mood alive and well through the late night and help the band kick out the jams. Likewise other favorites pop in such as “Wrong Side of Heaven” and “Bad Company”.
Moody kept constant interaction with the crowd at the arena and overall their sound was pristine, production top notch and was a heck of a way to end a fall touring season for the area. If you missed it DON’T next time as they are one of the premier Rock/Metal acts on the circuit.
Now we move to a new era of hopefully boosting the music scene in Huntsville, enter Mars Music Hall and the future build of the Midcity Amphitheater in hopes of bringing in even more music acts. And judging by the acts already booked over at Mars; it should be a very busy year for us and coverage. Come out and support the Rock Huntsville!!!