Concert Buzz

Judgement Day – Strng Metal


SpeakEsy Studios - Oceanside, CA

July 25, 2009

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by TastyWaxRecordings

Judgement Day for Metalheads

Unassuming does not begin to describe this venue. Once a truck parts/repair shop located next to the Waste Management storage yard in the industrial heart of Oceanside, the SpeakEasy Studios is part art gallery, part recording complex and part DIY live music venue, but its all raw and unprocessed creative energy. The location is primed to become the next decade’s North County Design District.

The evening started with a walk through the gallery where a variety of mini robots, chained mutant puppets and bright yet dower canvas welcomed, enchanted and disturbed the crowd of about 100 who filtered through.  Out in the parking lot a pile of old TV sets looped a brilliant short film bio of the puppets.

Shortly, City Beat writer Ed Decker, sat down for a some spoken wordplay mixing wisdom, wit and wry story-telling while members of “The Burning of Rome” improved funky R&B Jazz behind him.

As Mr. Decker finished his last prose blast, there came a lyrical whine followed by a brooding moan from around the corner of the building. This mixture was seasoned with deep, solitary thuds which built to a creepy slow dense groove. This, my friends, is String Metal.

The trio which goes by the weighty moniker of Judgment Day consists of classically trained brothers; Anton (Violin) & Louis (Cello) Patzner along with their bludgeoning friend Jon Bush on Drums. The Bay Area bruisers wield a mighty bow and lived up to their burdensome name.

The set started with a nerve tingling prologue and quickly developed into a thrilling explosion of classical tinged metal. Anton beckoned the crowd forward and then proceeded to lay waste to the awestruck mob.  I was completely unprepared for the musical treat these boys presented.

This was by far the most unique and riveting set I have seen in too many months. I have had a difficult time getting past the performance. The residue remains like the heavy throb and dizzying thunder of a blow to the psyche with a fur covered rubber mallet.

The crowd stood rapt as the trio morphed their instruments; sounding alternately like guitars, sitars, moog and the tormented screams of the demented puppets chained to the walls inside the gallery. I can’t recall the last show I saw where everyone actually listened to the performance. No drunken blather, no inane chatter, only nodding heads , dropped jaws and the occasional howl of approval at a particularly vicious attack or sumptuous crescendo.

This was theatre of the beautiful pain. By the time Anton began to work his effect pedals; delaying and warping his violin to swooning affect, the small but enthusiastic crowd was hooked. Louis’ Cello sang of powerful menace and gorgeous longing while Jon’s drums were alternately fierce and delicate.

This was no ordinary concert. This was a feast and a jolt for the senses, an all out assault visually and aurally. This music makes the point that pure pleasure is best experienced in contrast to its sister, pain. While I am not particularly a fan of heavy music, this evening was captivating on all levels and satisfying all around.

This is not your average chamber music or rock. These are musicians and artists of the highest order. They have constructed a new language blending classical and metal. It is built upon a solid base of stellar musicianship and crafted into a unique architecture all its own.

SpeakEasy Studios is a welcome addition to the burgeoning Oceanside Art and Music scene. The creative energy is open and abundant. Hopefully, they are establishing a toehold for future venues where North County’s creative juices can pour forth. I can’t wait to see what confection they cook up next.

 find these gems at  (Ed Decker)

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This review is the subjective opinion of the individual reviewer and not of ConcertBuzz

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Rating: 2.1/5 (123 votes cast)

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