A wave of octave-pedaled, phased out guitar filled the small space that is O’Leavers. The Omaha bar had quite a turnout a little after 9:00pm on the night of January 16th.
With absolutely no fanfare (and maybe no soundcheck?), Nightbird began their set of doomy stoner metal. Their first song went on long enough without vocals that I thought they might be an instrumental band. But after what may well have been more than three minutes, a vocal, drenched in reverb, joined in.
This vocal was coming from Gerald Lee Meyerpeter, who also plays guitar in this heavy three-piece. Meyerpeter belts out a lot of looooong notes, and with the effects knob-dimed, this gives Nightbird an otherworldly quality. Bassist Jeff Harder keeps the pulsating grooves going while Meyerpeter takes lead guitar breaks. Scott “Zip” Zimmerman’s drums don’t take the forefront, but provide a rock-solid foundation for the songs.
Nightbird’s approach to stoner/doom metal is interesting because it is heavy, but not crushingly so. This formula works, as it kept my attention, and the attention of the whole room which was starting to get crowded. The band finished up their hour-long set with a handful of punk rock songs, quite a gear shift from the plodding doom. I couldn’t find any recordings on the internet, but you can keep up with the band here.
As Nightbird was making way for Pro-Magnum, it was getting hot in O’Leavers, literally. So I stepped out onto the patio, and when I came back in, I was greeted by a wall of hot air, fragranced with breath, beer, and bodies. O’Leaver’s was PACKED. It was quite an ordeal to get in and out of the bar at this point.
Right out of the gate, Pro-Magnum lit up some cool harmonized guitar lines. Awesome. Pro-Magnum plays delightfully dirty metal. If you like Red Fang or The Sword, you are going to dig these guys. There is quite a dynamic between their songs; this isn’t a band that sounds like they are playing the same song over and over for their whole set. Most of the songs are up-tempo, not really fast, but quick.
The band makes use of synchronized stops that punctuate the rolling thunder, it’s a great way to keep the listeners on the edge of their seats. It definitely worked for me. I wasn’t watching the clock, but it sure seemed like their set just flew by. I can’t wait to see them again. In the meantime, I’ll just listen to their record that you can find here.
Instead of kicking the set off swiftly like Nightbird, Bloodcow eased us in with a spoken introduction. The introduction covered the important topics of pooping one’s own pants, spaghetti machines, spiritual m*****bation, and maybe most importantly, that the 16th was the day that marked the Corporate Merger’s (Bloodcow vocalist) birthday. Don’t believe me? Fine. Video proof here…
Not only was it a birthday party, but it was a party party. Bloodcow’s jams just get people moving. Maybe it’s the driving snare drum, maybe it’s the Corporate Merger’s warbling, yelpy vocals, but what was mostly a static crowd a few minutes before, was now moving. It’s hard not to move when you are watching Bloodcow, because it’s just so damn much fun!
As crowd members stood on chairs and benches to see better, the band blasted through a set containing a lot of new material from their upcoming record, Crystals and Lasers. Late last year Bloodcow had a kickstarter campaign that raised $9500 (!!!!) to help cover the costs of record production. I couldn’t find a release date, but you can get a taste of the new record on Bloodcow’s awesome website.
But there is more to the world than the internet…
…get out and pay some cover charges f*ckers!!