LIVE SHOTS: BTBAM, August Burns Red & Good Tiger

WEBSTER HALL, NYC – On the last day of their tour together (April 17th), I went to see August Burns Red, Between the Buried and Me and Good Tiger. I’ll be honest and admit that I didn’t do my homework. I had no clue what Good Tiger was, who was in it, or what they sound like. The groovy, almost funky, sometimes metalcore, always catchy sounds came fast and unexpectedly. Elliot Coleman’s high pitched singing mostly stayed constant even when the instrumentals started picking up the pace. This was the perfect melodic opener to Between the Buried and Me’s rhythmic brand of progressive metal.

BTBAM, as the crowd called them (that’s B-T-BAM), gives one hell of a performance along with a crazy light show to accompany Tommy Rogers’ on stage twitching and thrashing when he’s not standing over his keyboard like a convulsing puppeteer bringing his musical marionette to life. The rest of the band is working just as hard pummeling through the group’s lengthy tracks that are more like journeys than songs. You can’t help but be transported to wherever Between the Buried and Me is taking you. Perhaps it’s the audience who is Rogers’ puppet and not the melodies he creates. No matter what the case may be, BTBAM has the power to control your attention and I would let them do it again.

I’d also let August Burns Red brutalize my eardrums with their crushing, pitiless sounds. Jake Luhrs (vocals) commands when he gets on stage. Maybe it’s the sheer force and violence of his voice, the big muscles with the tiny shirt, or that he likes to slow dance on stage every respite he gets. With the exception of him, the guys in ABR don’t look like they belong in a metal band, and that’s always been said. JB Brubaker (guitar) has worn flip flops every time I’ve seen them perform. What I’ve never seen before is a drum solo and Matt Greiner gave me one I’ll likely not forget.

The tour-ending show was a success. I even learned something: Good Tiger is a titan of a band. It was a great time the whole way and all three of these bands deserve to see you each and every time they visit your city. They’re definitely going to see me again.

Review and photos by David Marulanda

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