Animals as Leaders -- Pittsburgh, PA -- July 23rd, 2011
This show was canceled two weeks ago after the promoter went out of business, and luckily another promoter picked it up last week. Because of this and the fact Slayer was playing across the river, the turnout wasn't all that great. However, for a show that basically had a week of promotion it was a nice crowd.
Evan Brewer was up first and played almost his entire solo album. This dude can play the bass in ways I never thought possible. Halfway through his set he picked up another and played two basses at once. I'm really curious to see how The Faceless incorporates his playing into their next album, because I'm of the belief after last night that he's the best musician in that band now.
Last Chance to Reason was next. Apparently they were missing a keyboardist and guitarist and it showed. They weren't really bad but they were definitely missing something. My friends seemed to enjoy them more than I did.
Dead Letter Circus came on after a short changeover. These guys are huge in Australia from what I understand. They had the number 2 album in the country at one point last year. I thought they were fantastic. Their sound reminded me a lot of Tesseract but with more focus on melody. I love going to shows when you're not expecting anything from a band and they manage to impress you. Their recordings do not do this band justice.
After a 15 minute changeover, the reason why I went to this show took the stage. Ever since Intronaut toured with Kylesa and Mastodon a few years back, I've been waiting to see them again. Last night, they were even more impressive than they were two years ago. Danny Walker and Joe Lester might be the best rhythm section in music right now. The sound was really good besides the vocals being a little too low in the mix. I also wish they had more time than they did, but they made it worth the ticket cost.
The Literal Black Cloud
Since I can't say I'm an Animals as Leaders fan, I was curious how they would be live. They were fantastic. Tobin Abasi is one of the best dressed men in music today, and quite possibly the best guitarist in the world right now. I've seen some people online complain that their set has been short, but I think that works to their benefit. This kind of music is great in small doses, but a long set from these guys probably would start to become a little boring after awhile. Everything they played sounded clear and Tobin seemed to really enjoy being here.
Point to Point
Wave of Babies
Song of Solomon
Thoroughly at Home
(credit goes to my friend Wade for the setlist)
The crowd was kind of dead the entire night, but it was hard to tell if that was because they were being respectful of the musicianship or if they were stupid. After they were done I met Javier and Tobin, and both seemed really appreciative of everyone coming out and they did say they would be back in the fall. Their new album is due to come out in November if everything goes according to plan. I went outside and talked to Sacha from Intronaut for about 15-20 minutes. He's an absolute class act. They're going to be touring a bit more for Valley of Smoke, though they have slowly begun to write a small amount for the next album. All in all, a great night of music that I won't forget for a long time.
Julia Holter: 2/25