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Fall of Troy, Deftones, Dir En Grey Live Review

by Mike Rapin

Tonight started off like any week night before a concert. I came home from work, dropped off my backpack/laptop and headed out. I got some food with a buddy of mine (my editor, actually) and off we went to the Orbit Room of Grand Rapids, Michigan. The thing about the Orbit Room is that it looks a bit bigger than it really is, but that is far from the point of this review; the free tickets. Prior to arriving at the venue, my editor and I listened to some Bury Your Dead (for the easy breakdowns of course!) followed by some damn hilarious Patton Oswald stand-up via my iPod, just to get the night started off right. Let it be known that things went downhill from here.

The Orbit Room, as expected, was packed with random a**holes, some real fans of the bands and more a**holes. It was 6:45PM, or so, when I finally was in front of the stage and ready to hear some damn music... It was 7:20PM when things started with the Fall of Troy.

The performance of The Fall of Troy was good from a general standpoint but for me it was sub-par. The whole act was just plain messy (which is to be expected given the speed and technicality of the music) but the overall presentation of just the guitar and vocalist Thomas Erak made things obvious on why the band was "on hiatus" or whatever the hell happened a while back before their newest album Manipulator was released. Outside of presentation, there was a very good mix of old (Doppelganger) and new (Manipulator) songs with made me smile and sing along the entire time, even though it was an unfortunately short set. The obvious talent of this band was apparent throughout. (Can you tell I'm a fan?) Sadly, though, the crowd wasn't "digging" The Fall of Troy; the crowd was there for the next band…

Following The Fall of Troy was Dir En Grey. What to say about this band... Perhaps the mention of sheer spookiness of all the members of this nu-metal-pop-rock band is enough... Or maybe the fact that lead singer Kyo is one energetic mofo. But really, I couldn't get into this music at all, and outside of Kyo's extreme jumpiness and energy, the rest of the band stayed in their designated places from start to the last song, where the whole band moved closer to the crowd by about 1 foot to make things seem more "real" I guess. I really don't want to stop bitching about Kyo's insane amount of jumping and moving around, but instead I'll move on to his very eerie singing voice and its ability to jump 2-10 octaves at a time (exaggeration). Things were just too bland to be likable.

Following Dir En Grey, many of the lame-Goth kids left and older nu-metalers showed up.

Oh, the Deftones. Dear Christ on a tee these guys make me sick. It could have been the stage lights that could have caused epileptic seizures (I'm not kidding), or the silly background "wall" of lights that were playing random nearly-unrecognizable video clips throughout or the fact that singer Chino Moreno had some kind of step on the stage to jump off of to make things more 'dramatic' or whatever the f**k, but this band was so lame I had to leave in the middle of their set. It was like the sound of electricity buzzing in a going to-burn-out-light in a parking light, or a vibrator left on in your girlfriends room; it was annoying and bland and sounded like music that belonged in 1999 behind some lame-ass bad guy's dance party (see also: Blade or The Crow). If the lights hadn't occasionally flickered on to the stage, I would have thought Mr. Chino Moreno was up there by himself. I wonder how bands like that survive...

All in all, I was very disappointed in this entire show. I got a Fall of Troy T-shirt out of it, but that doesn't make up for the whole sh*ttiness of it all---not even The Fall of Troy could make up for it... not even all that talent...

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Fall of Troy, Deftones, Dir En Grey Live


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