by WestCoast Weasel WestCoast Weasel
April 4, 2010

March 26, 2010
The Bourbon
Vancouver, B.C

I’m not sure how many run-of-the-mill emo bands I’m going to have to see before I “get it.”  Although it’d make for a more enjoyable evening if I did—I think I simply ought to be more careful what I bother reviewing in the first place.  Sure Brompton Distress Call had hooks, harmonies, and heart but when Daric Distress asked, half-seriously “do we suck that bad?”—I had to bite my lip.  It was (to their credit) perhaps a little too early to tell.  But as I later heard them cover “I’m Made of Wax, Larry, What Are You Made Of?” by A Day To Remember (go figure), followed by their own sappy, painful “I Love to Hate You” all I felt like doing was answering his question positively.  This is the same thing over and over and over and over again.

Having only heard a couple MySpace tracks and viewing a capturing video from Kill Matilda, I was really looking forward to seeing Dusty the Girl Icarus and her hard rock crew in-the-flesh.  I was expecting them to be the most up my alley (of the evening’s three performers) and also who I came to see.  Right off the bat, Dusty’s spunkyness and balls (absolutely no pun intended) and great pipes were apparent.  Breaking through what was a poor overall live mixing job by the engineer, she showed her ability to sing well and scream the just the same.  Hearing their single “She’s A Killer” early on gave me a great point of reference.  While my interest was held and she exceeded my expectations performance wise, I couldn’t say the same for the overall stage presence between songs.  From the second she hit the stage to the set’s demise, her over-using the word “fuck” detracted from the performance rather than spicing it up in any way.  As my friend mentioned—no one’s shocked or dismayed by hearing “motherfucker,” especially when it’s intentional at almost every possible chance.

Despite exaggerated mannerisms from bass player Mykel, when the music was on (for the most part), it overshadowed any aforementioned cringe-worthy banter.  While I felt the set was a tad hit-or-miss for my tastes—the band was tight overall and the energy was notable.  On the simpler, punchy tunes influenced by likes of the Misfits and Veruca Salt, I stood stoked and wanting more.  When it shifted to a more Evanescence style of rock/metal, they lost momentum.  Perhaps the set was a mix of older and newer tracks, validating the imbalance of style; maybe such a dynamic was intentional.  While I thought the power-pop cuts with some punky snarl and scream was what fared best, I’m sure Kill Matilda’s sound can and will appeal to wider audiences as they trek across Canada on their way to their new home of Montreal.  Keep your eyes and ears peeled for another video and upcoming EP, recorded here in Vancouver at GGGarth’s Nimbus Studios.

I was semi-interested in seeing what all the hype was about in regards to Bullets over Beauty, but whenever that’s the case I have my warranted reservations.  Setting the mood with a “Mr. Crowley”-like [Ozzy Osbourne] audio track piqued my interest and—oddly—followed with an instrumental intro song, which did kick some ass.  It’s unfortunate that’s exactly where anything worthwhile both started and ended.  As soon as I heard Steffyn sing, all I could think was “Great, another Geddy Lee-type rip off in the vein of Coheed and Cambria.”

They blend a beyond typical mash of heavy riffage with whiny, sing along vocals surely to appeal to the stereotype of “side-bang boys” and their dark, pouty counterparts.  I mean, the lead vocalist did play a mean lead guitar, which I almost always find admirable but the songs and their styles were contrived, trendy, self-important rock that just doesn’t.  If this type of music passes for Vancouver “buzz-worthy” rock n’ roll, the indie-hipster epidemic out west is surely going to conquer.  And hats off to ‘em, I guess.  The turnout was rather low despite hearing about these guys constantly over the past year, so maybe the good word did get out.  The high point was when Muse’s “Time Is Running Out” was heard, putting the whining to some good use… if only for a few minutes.

…Weasel Was Here

Visit these artists online:

Brompton Distress Call – myspace.com/bromptondistresscall

Kill Matilda – myspace.com/killmatildasupernova.com/Kill-Matilda

Bullets Over Beauty – myspace.com/bulletsoverbeauty

Kill Matilda’s “She’s A Killer” music video

Brompton Distress Call’s “The Hidden Truth” music video

Comments

3 Responses to “Renegade Rock Review Vol. 21: Kill Matilda w/ Brompton Distress Call & Bullets Over Beauty”

  1. Sweetheart_Of_Rock Sweetheart_Of_Rock says:

    This review seems to be very subjective, based on personal taste. Perhaps the reviewer is new to reviewing. I was also at this show and I enjoyed all 3 bands for different reasons.

    Brompton opened the night with a killer punch as mentioned giving us their hooks, harmonies and heart. The Bourbon from my experience has a very reserved feel from the crowd perspective and as the opening band it can be difficult to get them to open up and let go based on their social environment and lack of alcohol in their bloodstream. Brompton as a unit as a very “real” feel about them. I say “real” not emo, because the reviewer obviously is new to music if he or she is calling them emo. My favorite song of theirs was “As The Seasons Change”, I felt this song in my bones. When the chorus kicked in, I felt it was one of the best songs I’ve heard from a local band in a really long time. Their last song “Re-birth” was also quite the anthem and showed they were writing songs for themselves, but needed our help in their revolution. The Day To Remember Cover “I’m made of wax Larry”, was rad and whoever did their guest vocal part in the bridge (can’t remember his name) also did a great job pulling off the devil wears prada screams! So does the reviewer think A Day To Remember is emo? Have you ever listened to them? I saw Brompton about a year prior and they have come leaps and bounds. I have a good feeling they will be a forced to be reckoned with very soon.

    Kill Matilda certainly had the balls and drive to follow. Packed full of attitude and raw emotion they brought the goods as they always do (I’ve seem them a few times). I was stoked to read they are working on new material at Nimbus :) . They are very tight instrumentally, but also have that “it” factor that you can’t get from just playing a lot. They commanded the crowd and kept the energy high!

    Bullets Over Beauty closed the night with a power packed punch of heavy melodic rock that really shows they are on top of the city. I personally thought they should have won seeds 2009, but hey to each her own. The singers Steffyn’s voice to me is angelic, a true singer with bang on pitch and confidence. The drummer is a machine who had me watching him more then I usually watch drummers. The guitarist rocked the fuck out and drew me into his world of passion. The bass player was tight and held is own on the vocal front, laying down wicked cushioning harmonies in just the right spots. These guys just plain rock and I can’t stop listening to their new EP. Divided We Stand is my favorite song of theirs, which they didn’t play at the show! I was upset, but alas, I will go to their next gig in town and beg them to play it.

    All in all this show kicked ass and I wish there was more types of these shows in Vancouver. Usually from what I’ve noticed, Vancouver shows are a huge mis-match of different genre types that provides no “brand” or consistency for the night. Simply put, this was a night of balls to the wall rock, fueled with passion, drive and heart.

  2. Certainly not new to reviewing but perhaps a little too subjective. Had the opening act offered anything exciting I would have used a more fitting / less generic term to describe them. I would still agree with what I wrote.

    I definitely dig the different take on the night, though. It’s nice to read it from an angle of someone who can appreciate this type of rock music. I confirm more and more that I simply may not. Thanks for sharing. We need more people like this around here. Cheers.

  3. One thing’s for sure: when you can rock the fuck out AND bring someone into a world of passion, it’s never subjective.

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