Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Felicia Does Heavy Metal

As a die-hard Rhythm & Blues/ jazz fan, it might shock you to know that I was once an avid AC/DC fan. "Back in Black" is still on my all-time favorite Top 10 list and I still know every word to the title song and "You Shook Me All Night Long." Never saw them on stage (the last non-R&B concert I went to was last August), but I kinda thought my semi-hard rocking days were behind me once I hit the big 4-0 (save for a little listening on my iPod while on the treadmill).

So guess where I went a couple of Saturdays ago? To The Loft in Poughkeepsie, a spot on Crannell Street (just around the corner from The Chance). Unbeknownst to me, The Loft is a popular venue for heavy metal bands, so of course I thought nothing of it when Will, one of my karate training partners, asked if I wanted to come and check out his band. I'd missed their last concert - the one that my other training partners and my sensei caught - at Webster Hall in NYC. They all raved about the performance and how much fun they had, so I vowed I'd catch the next one.

The only other thing my karate buds told me was that Will was an amazing guitarist. A bit shy and reserved in the dojo, they said he was a totally different person on stage. So I bought two tickets for the "Left in Ruins" show on January 22 and made a "date night" with my honey, who has never listened to anything remotely resembling heavy metal in his life (that's his hand in the pic above, holding the ticket stubs). He prefers hip-hop and R&B.

I guess we looked a little out of our element in the jeans and sweaters we wore amid the folks with lots of tattoos, body piercings and chains hanging out near the entrance. The guy taking the tickets took one look an us and gently asked "Umm...you here for the METAL show?" Yep - I guess we were!

Will's band, No Remission, was just setting up when we walked in. He greeted me warmly and thanked me for coming before giving a nod to his three band-mates, stepping up to the mike and screaming "What the f*ck is up, Poughkeepsie?!?" Definitely a totally different person than training partner Will.

The music was actually pretty good - even when I stood next to a very large speaker to get this photo:


Will's lead voice and guitar were nice to listen to (I really did like "Redemption"). I was kinda getting into the performance - y'know, tapping my foot and moving my head a bit - until the mosh pit near the stage got a bit close (one poor guy almost got pushed out the door and down the stairs). Soon after, another guy started moving his head in time to the music (I'm talking his chin hit his chest and the back of his head practically touched between his shoulder blades on every beat) and continued through the rest of the performance. He seriously put me and most of the other foot tappers to shame.

When the band was done, the thunderous applause prompted the promoter to ask them to add an encore song to the set. But by then, my honey was getting kinda antsy (he later said he thought his eardrums might be bleeding) so I waved to Will and the band before dipping out.

I made a video of them when I was standing next to the speaker, but I guess I was too close because the sound quality is not so great. But you can listen to them here. Hope you enjoy it as much as we did :-)

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