HAUNT, HELLFIRE AND ORCHID: LIVE SHOW REVIEW…

For this show, Saturday 23-JUN-18, I visited the Potrero Hill area of San Francisco…

At a local little bar called, Thee Parkside… The bar area itself is very dark with blackout shades cover the windows, the stage is about 12 ft x 12 ft (3 m x 3 m) with two edges pushed up against the walls and with the front corner being chopped off, the exposed sides are about 8 ft long with maybe a 6 ft long diagonal connecting them… This place has a covered patio area where you can order food and such, that is about twice the size of the bar itself…

Opening up the show was a band out of Fresno, Ca.

HAUNT…

Haunt is a four piece group made up of: Trevor William Church / Vocals & Guitar, Taylor Holman / Bass, John / Guitar and finishing up with Wolfie on the drums… Vocalist Trevor started this band as an offspring of another band he created called Beastmaker… Being the opener, there were about 50 to 60 people on hand when they started their set, by the time they finished that number had easily grown to 100+… They opened up playing all four songs off their EP, titled Luminous Eyes. Starting off with the title track, followed by “As Fire Burns”, “No Master” and “Fallen Star”… Their set lasted about 40 min. and included a total of seven songs, the last two, having not been performed in front of an audience were premiered for lucky ones who were in attendance and are definitely keepers… At the completion of their set, I was nothing but impressed with the performance they put on… everything from the guitarist sharing the spot light with each other and their timing for moving around on such a small stage was impressive… Come to find out, they have only been playing together for two months… WHAT!!!!…Yes only two months… I will be keeping an eye on these guys…

HELLFIRE…

This was my second opportunity to see this local San Francisco band (first time being about 18 months ago). These guys have a speed / thrash style to their music that suits them well…

Band members: Jake Nunn / Vocal & Guitar, Herman Bandala / Bass, Tony Campos / Lead Guitar and Drummer Mike Smith…This band is an amalgamation of two bands that were having problems holding onto members, Hellfire and members from another local band named Hysteria have combined to form the current line up and it seems to working out well for them…

Opening up with “Destroyers” off there second album “Free Again” pulled the crowd right into the set, especially with Jake’s powerful style of singing…Following with “Sirens Of The Hunter” which was the only song they played from the first album “Metal Masses”… “City Ablaze” followed by a great little Bass solo by founding member Herman Bandala, (who just so happen to be celebrating his 30th birthday) after a few more songs, They threw in a new one, that I think is called “Live Forever” although I didn’t get a chance to confirm the title…they finished up their seven song set with the title track “Free Again”… If you like your metal a little more upbeat, you”ll enjoy giving this band a try… they also made an announcement that this was their last show of the mini tour that has lasted a little over two months (along with Haunt) and are heading back into the studio…

ORCHID…

This was my first time coming in contact with this San Franciscan mainstay…. Having performed in the area for more than ten years, this band has a great following and was clearly the band everyone came to see… Their style will drive you back to the early days of metal (and I do mean early) with heavy and powerful bass riffs that you can feel deep in your chest, to the cymbal crashing highs on the other end…

Members include: Theo Mindell / Vocals, Mark Thomas Baker / Guitar, Keith Nickel / Bass and Tommy Rickard / Drums… As you can tell, it’s a basic old school line up of a vocalist, a bass player, a guitarist and a drummer and it fits them like a pair of custom made gloves… They started off with “Eyes Behind The Wall” to get the evening going… following with “Mister Nightmare”, “Sign of The Witch”, “Down Into The Earth” by this time the crowd is screaming out requests….They pressed on with “Helicopters”,”Black Funeral”, then onto the title track “Capricorn” the set extended into another three songs before it was over… Their performance lasted just under an hour and the crowd was left wanting more… Unfortunately, the lead singer Theo who was recovering from a recent bout of laryngitis and just could not go on… He was a trooper to last as long as he did…

If you take the time to listen to this album, it is extremely obvious who their major influence is… That being said, I do have to admit that I like their style and they do have a confident stage presence about them…

Before I wrap this up, I want to give some love to the sound tech at Thee Parkside… Well Done…

I also want to give a big shout-out to ELL YONG for giving me the opportunity to write for this blog…Cheers Brother…

On the way out, I would like remind everyone to go out and S.L.U.T. (support local unsigned talent)

Until next time,

Rockin’ Roach (Jeff Mattarocci)

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