Hail!Hornet -- Austin, TX -- January 29th, 2012
Hail!Hornet (partial set)
Disperse The Curse
Venue: Dirty Dog Bar
This tour consisted of a screening of the southern metal documentary Slow Southern Steel along with the added bonus of Zoroaster and Hail!Hornet playing afterwards.
The night started off a little slow as there were some minor technical difficulties when it came to getting the sound from the movie playing in the venue. Within 15 minutes or so they had it figured out. I am a big fan of documentary films and I thought that Slow Southern Steel was very well done. The movie featured interviews with members of EYEHATEGOD, Down, Weedeater, Kylesa, Lamb of God, Dark Castle among many others; as well as the always entertaining Hank Williams III. Between the guys from Zoroaster and Hail!Hornet as well as Texas band, Dixie Witch; who are featured in the film as well; there were about 10 people from the movie watching in the same room. That was pretty cool, watching Dixie Dave getting interviewed and then turning to see his reaction to watching himself. Part way into the movie, just as Phil Anselmo was telling a story about his first guitar the movie froze and it was about 10 minutes of more tech problems while they switched the DVD to a different laptop and got it going again. But all issues with the screening aside I thought the whole thing was great. They didn't get into the specifics of the music per se, but it was more of an overview of how the southern experience has molded the metal scene that is born out of the region.
Zoroasterís equipment was already onstage so after the movie ended the three-piece sludge dealers started sound checking and got right into some music. Unfortunately, the vocals for Zoroaster were very low in their mix, between that and the feedback drenched nature of their brand of sludge it was impossible to hear anything they were expressing via the microphones. It didnít seem to matter as they rumbled from one song to another with smoke machines and lasers blasting from behind them. I donít know their material enough to pick out any songs.
In the break between Zoroaster and Hail!Hornet I was able to chat with the frontman for Rwake and director of the film, CT. He said that they were trying to get the movie into the film portion of SXSW this year; in addition he confirmed that Rwake is playing a show with High on Fire at Emoís as well as another with COC at the Dirty Dog during SXSW this year. Really friendly guy.
What do you get when you mix past and present members of Sourvein, Weedeater, Alabama Thunderpussy and Buzzoven? I mean, other than a contact high and whiskey spilled on your shoes? You get the sludge supergroup Hail!Hornet. Their second full length, Disperse the Curse, came out last year on Relapse and as far as I know this is the bandís first tour to speak of. But from the way they share the stage you know theyíve been jamming together for years. A fair amount of the 50 or so people who attended the movie stuck around to take in this rare chance to see Hail!Hornet perform. It being a Sunday night did not slow the boys down when it came to drinking as Dixie and Troy were throwing back beer and whiskey like it was their job. They sounded great and played a good mix of songs from both their albums. Total they probably played about 10-12 songs and ended around midnight.
All in all this was a really fun night. If you are in one of the remaining cities I highly recommend checking it out.