Thursday, November 17, 2016

Carcass with Deafheaven and Inter Arma in St. Pete's

The first band Inter Arma is from VA and is like Emily Dickenson poetry put to metal.  Instead of the reminiscent “Because I Could Not Stop For Death,” they speak of riding slowly to their graves.  They exploded right off the bat, then slow it down to almost a Cathedral style epic song of going to the grave, a melodic groove that has parts that are purely instrumental, setting the slow march to awaiting death.

The lead singer eventually creeps in with a foreboding deep voice, as if the grim reaper is speaking.  Patchouli smoke fills the air as if an epic mist or fog in a graveyard.  While the rest of the band slows to a melodic crawl, the drummer, with no shirt and faded red shorts, pounds on steadily for the death march. 

When the pack picks up, he explodes on the drums, and the dueling guitars and bass follows suit.  The lead singer jumps in, growling, letting the spirits fill him.  The deep growls from beyond the grave meshes well with the massacre of music, as intense as the dropping of the guillotine, music splattering on you like blood from the severed neck: musical decapitation.

When they finish, they calmly exit, as if they did not just blow everyone’s mind, tiptoeing off stage as if it wasn’t them who just took the crowd on the epic journey through sound and musically inspired emotion, a trip to beyond the grave and back.  When the lights turn on and the house metal selection comes on, the drummer can be seen air drumming to the beats, proving he is a true music fan.

In fitting contrast, there is a guy in the crowd wearing a Whinnie the Pooh outfit onesie, who must be sweating…  He makes his way to the front for DeafHeaven, along with a mass of youth.  When the mosh pit erupts, some look startled, with big eyes like WTH is going on, and what are all these crazy people doing, especially the small guys in skinny jeans, uh-oh…

Whinnie the Pooh makes his way on stage to dive off into the crowd for the song Sunbather.  There’s so much dense fog rolling out from under the stage that it creates this cloudy effect like heaven.  There’s a lot of guitar playing that is higher up the fret, only adding to the ethereal effect of the band.

The lead singer says it’s incredible to be playing with a band that they’ve looked up to for so long.  He is great at slapping hands with the eager fans.  One guy nearly creams his jeans, exclaiming, “he touched me!” 

The girl next to him had her hand slapped, too, and she also looked as if she was going to cry from an orgasm.  It’s almost comical to see these young kids freaking out, because in their eyes, these guys are bigger than Justin Beiber, or girls in the 80’s screaming for New Kids On The Block.  Their music was great though, you’ll give DeafHeaven that. 

The fog made it hard to see who anyone on stage was, but it did add to an awesome effect.  It’s like a generation after the Carcass band; the lead singer sported leather dress shoes, paired with jeans ripped below his ass cheek.  The one guitar player could’ve been a stand-in for the guy turned into fishboy in that Rob Zombie film.

They were good enough that you would go purchase their album, so worthy of checking out if you’ve not heard them before for sure.  They end with Roads to Judah’s “Unrequited.”

Carcass guys set up the stage with a medical tools backdrop and positioned LED screens.  The same medical tool backdrop drapes beneath the drums and wraps around boxes, adding to the slice and dice effect.  A lot of youth filters out, as the older fans claim the front of the stage, each looking a little bewildered, like they didn’t expect to see a bunch of kids rocking out before a band like Carcass.

Feet are sticking to the ground, commanding you to stay in the front row.  Each time you pick up a hoof, you worry your shoes will get torn apart.  It’s like superglue on shoes.

Carcass commands the stage, bringing the heaviest riffs by far.  The mosh pit erupts like a volcano, asking over the crowd.  People hit around as if abruptly struck by a car of drunk drivers.

The make people chant along, egging them on.  Hair flies every which way, and the two guitarists battle for domination in between fits of angry screams.  The LED display even encompasses the drum kit, a really cool effect.  Bloody body parts, even a mangled, bloody penis, rotates around the LED synched displays.

Hearing the proper British accent is such a contrast to the guttural belting when they sing, but they command the audience like a king.  Some of the young blood went home to their moms, but a few brave ones stayed to get schooled on how these British cats rule.  There’s a bleach smell in the air, like someone has been sterilizing medical equipment.

Whinnie the Pooh must’ve been ripped apart, and maybe that’s his innards they’re flashing on stage, a take no prisoners show, regardless of age.  Here in Florida, lots of people sport their Death shirts, and the lead singer recalls coming to Florida in Miami to play with Death, calling it the “most epic tour ever.”  Bloody surgeries are shown on the stage, adding to how much these guys rage.

The real troopers stomp around, pounding fists and knocking their heads.  They show the young bloods what a real mosh pit is all about.  It’s not running in a circle, but hard, heavy hits, like people having fits.  

One guy marches by wearing a leather studded kilt.  Girls sport fishnets, even on their sleeves under their concert shirts.  The fad of skinny jeans replaced with cargo shorts, many sporting camo for Veteran’s Day. 

Military is definitely a group that doesn’t play, able to slaughter as much as the band that shreds on stage.  Like soldiers, these guys don’t take a break, stomping on until everyone in the crowd feels the ache.  They don’t pause for a ballad, just hitting hard again and again like a fly over dropping bombs, leaving a path of destruction and the telltale Carcass.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Dumpstaphunk in Tampa

The Ybor Night

8:40 p.m. November 6, 2016

In the gym bathroom, you think about last night, hanging with Dumpstaphunk, yeah you right. Their music makes people dance with delight.

It was random how you had met Tony Hall back stage at Tipitina’s for the Lundi Gras ball. You had no idea that he was a musician at all.

It was just a guy who happened to sit next to you. There was random chatting like you usually do. A friend asked how you did that and you had no clue.

“Don't you know who that guy is? He’s a legend, internationally acclaimed in the music biz!” As a journalist, you felt far from a music whiz.

She was eager to crow that he's played with Bob Dylan, Linda Rondstandt and Trey Anastasio. You still treated him like a regular dude though.

You wound up seeing him around town. While living in New Orleans, you seen him around.. You’d be dancing at the Maple Leaf getting down.

He invited you to see him play with different acts, as he rolled with a variety of musical packs. He played with all kinds of musical contracts.

He was playing music regularly and steady. You saw him play with Trey opening for Tom Petty. That was when you worked in D.C.; it was heady.

Whether seeing him play in states with snow or palm, he even met your mom. She actually liked his music, thought it was the bomb.

He’s played with Dave Matthews Band, and he gave you an Electric Forest armband. Your brother thought the festival was a wonderland.

You didn't realize that was the last chance to hang with your bro. He wound up getting arrested though. Since then, solitary is his new chateau.

He was so happy to see other people with dreds, hippies with long locks on their heads. He was amazed to see so many tie dyed threads.

There were more dreded hippies last night, a waterfront location under the moon’s light. After, we went to Ybor, which was a delight.

After he packed up his bass and guitar, we went with people to First Chance, Last Chance bar, then to meet more people at Crowbar.

The Ybor City downtown strip was like being back in New Orleans on a trip. It was as if the locations did a mysterious wormhole flip.

Then as fast as it all happened then, it's back to reality once again. Time to leave the bathroom and get back to working out in the gym playpen.

10:19 p.m. November 6, 2016

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Moonalice to play tomorrow; tune in live!

Moonalice recently released their latest album High 5, and will be playing tomorrow night, Nov. 3rd, at the Prop 64 Awareness – Get Out and Vote – concert at Sweetwater Music Hall in Mill Valley, CA, with guests like Steve DeAngelo of the nation’s largest licensed pot dispensary, Harborside in Oakland, CA.  The band was the brainchild of  T Bone Burnett, who, in 2007, wanted to create a band with a 60’s sound, so he gathered a group of seasoned musicians:  Roger McNamee, Pete Sears, Barry Sless, John Molo, and Big Steve Parish.  All of their concerts stream live in HD at, so even if you are not in California, you can still tune in to see this amazing show.

Roger McNamee, who recently played the Lockn’ Festival in Virginia with the Doobie Decibel System (DDS), and was formerly of Guff, The Engineers, Random Axes, and Flying Other Brothers talked about the new album.  "If you think of the political tone the country is dealing with right now, some of the roots of that tone were obvious when we were writing these songs. They reflect the struggle to make sense of things, and to stay on whatever path we're on in face of complications."

Pete Sears, of the original lineup of Jefferson Starship, as played with Rod Stewart, Ron Wood, Long John Baldry, Hot Tuna, DDS, Peter Rowan, Harvey Mandel, DNB, Jerry Garcia, Bob Weir, Phil Lesh and Friends, Los Lobos, Dr. John, Steve Kimock and John Lee Hooker.  He chose to talk about the song “Summer Rain,” saying, “I wrote it recently, but it is actually about my trip to San Francisco in 1969 and falling in love with my wife, Jeannette.”

Sears chatted about the song “Unsung Heroes,” explaining, “It’s about our road crew…hardest working guys in show business.  They travel across the country in rain and snow, and somehow make it in time to set-up for the gig.  Very hard job, especially having to work with us spoiled musicians.” 

One might not be aware of the instantaneous origins of the song “Lady of the Highlands.”  Sears shared, “I wrote it in two days, sort of a mood, a feeling, a love song in a strange sort of way.  It’s about no particular incident or person. It has a Celtic feel, coming from Great Britain and having roots in the Celtic community; it just came out the way it did.”  

Sears continued on about the song “Paradise,” detailing, “It’s about growing old and trying to keep things in perspective and what’s important.  As corny as it sounds, like, love is important.  The chorus is ‘Pages turn, as we grow old, who can say how the story unfolds…’  Keep in mind it’s what’s important in life...keep an eye on those things as we go into the twilight years.  Sounds depressing, but it’s not really…it’s a blessing to still be around.”

Drummer and vocalist John Molo has played the John Fogerty, Bruce Hornsby & The Range, Phil Lesh and Friends, as well as The Other Ones.  ‘“High Five’ was written by my good friend Barry Sless. Fun song to play.  Inspired by Joe Morello and Dave Brubeck's original ‘Take 5.’  Barry wrote a great reincarnation of the theme,” Molo said.

Big Steve Parish is the band’s manager, story teller, road scholar and medicine man, a Grateful Dead family member and co-founder of the Jerry Garcia Band.  Moonalice may best be known for their take on the Jimmy Buffet, with their song, “It’s 4:20 Somewhere,” which is probably why Lorin Rowan and many other guests will be sitting in on the concert tomorrow.  Everyone attending the concert tomorrow will receive a rock poster by Alexandra Fischer, as well as many pro-pot posters.  The band strives to have an original art poster by a well-known artist at every one of their concerts, and be sure to check out, as well as,, and

Additionally, the band has their own radio station at, where you can find band members staring stories and playing a wide variety of their favorite music, ranging from classic rock and jam bands, to reggae, Americana, oldies, blues, and soul.  DJ Ben Fong-Torres is featured every weekend, along with Moongirl, 420 news, Big Steve Parish, DDS and       

As posters are a big part Moonalice, they recently posted a history of rock posters: