Rock Party 2 invaded Long Beach again on March 9, 2013, hosting a day filled with over 75 bands. Everything from up and coming bands to Nationals, this day had something for everyone's musical taste from Hip Hop to Death Metal. The day long festival was hosted and promoted by a number of people, including Dead Sea Records owner Michael Black, a musician himself in the world famous band Black Oil.
Seeing as many bands as we did (at least 20), we are just going to mention a few. They stood out because we were either already a fan or they were so good that we had to stop and watch their whole set. That was a feat since there were over 6 stages with bands killing it at a time. Although we did not write about them, we want to mention The New Varsity, Paradigm, & Destrium for putting on great sets.
The first band of the day to catch our full attention was Something Left Unsaid. Straight out of the San Francisco Bay area, this band was hard-core true metal. Mixing metal growls and killer drumming, they gave our metal appetite a tasty fist full of delicious. Brendan McCarthy Vocals, Rich Perez/Drums, Pat Peterson/ Guitars and Dan Ericson/Bass are Something Left Unsaid. We were captivated by the way they owned the stage, talked to the audience, their sound, and their all-out assault reminded us of Trivium, which in our books is a big compliment. It was our first time hearing them but we recommend them to any true metal fan. To see what we mean for yourself, click the following link to see a live performance video shot at this festival http://youtu.be/BVW_St0vEJ8
DMT is no stranger to us and we were already fans of this band. We have seen them countless times (at least 3 times already this year) and we always count them as a must see band. This LA band has been involved in countless Metal Festivals and other great shows at iconic LA venues, for good reason; they are that good and legit threat to rise to the top of the Metal empire. Jamie Rubel ~ Vocals, Alistar Valadez ~ Bass/Vocals, Dave Valadez ~ Guitars, Sean Dove ~ Guitars, and Erick Daniel ~ Drums meld together to be one of the best bands on the LA scene. Progressive/Psychedelic/Metal is how the band describes themselves. We love their music because their lyrics are meaningful, their sound is hard & heavy, and they are the whole package; the sound, the look, and the stage presence.
The Veil Between is: Jimi Elesdi - Vocals, Drew Petropoulos - Bass, Jason Matthew Engols - Guitar, Rob "dose" Vanwestbrook - Guitar, and Josh " The Roach" Durante - Drums/Percussion. If you asked the band about their sound they would say, “- we mix elements of many different genres from rock n roll to brutal death metal.. electronic to organic. we range from extremely heavy to hauntingly beautiful and complex... creating a modern sound that represents fresh ideas while still respecting the old school.” From our fans on the floor perspective, we would describe it in one word: Metalriffic. This IE/LA band needs to be on your list of metal bands to check out.
Darkest Hour brought metal fans to the front, not just to the barriers, but to the edge of the stage where the barriers had to be pushed back to. Their would be no photo pit available for this set. For those who couldn't crush to the front, they created a true metal circle pit appropriate for the Darkest Hour's Thrash/Metal/Punk sound and style. Around since 1995, this band keeps giving fans what they want; one hell of a show. To put into perspective how the band feels about their long life as a band, this is what they had to say on their band page on Facebook, "When you are 30 and broke, still chasing the dream and the artistic endeavor of being in a heavy metal band, you get to the point where you think, 'I can't do this anymore,' but everyone in the band is addicted. There is no hope. We love it regardless of the misery that comes with being in a band. We are five dudes that are addicted to the misery of band life that we will continue to do it over and over.” As you can see they have passion & drive, and we saw the talent up close and personal. All this pours out on stage, feeding the crowds energy. If you've never seen this band and you are a metal fan, catch them when you can.
A Skylit Drive didn't finish the festival, but did have the most engaged set we witnessed all day or night. By engaged, we mean their fans were constantly moshing, passing bodies, and crushing the stage. Michael "Jag" Jagmin-Vocals, Nick Miller-Guitar, Brian White-Bass/Screams, Kyle Simmons - Bass/Keyboards, and Cory La Quay-Drums/Vocals bring sex appeal as well as Punk/Rock, & "Screamo" to the stage. This hard edged band out of Lodi, California are making noise and getting noticed in the music scene. When they took the stage they too had a great mosh pit, but what made their pit a bit different is that it had a much higher mix of Metal chicks in the pit. The band will tell you they are a combo of Rock/Screamo/Experimental. No matter what musical genre you use to describe their sound, you will always find the words: Awesome, Killer, and on the must see list.
We would like to Thank Michael Black, lead singer of Black Oil and owner of Dead Sea Records for inviting us to cover the show and being there for whatever we needed. It's always great to work with a Pro like Michael and we appreciate it always.
Until the next time, "Occupy Your Local Venues & Support Your Local Bands!".
Written by: Melissa & Wes Anderson, http://www.ROCKwellUnScene.com