Now, now, we’ll get to BLAMESHIFT in a little while but let’s start off with what I wasn’t expecting, shall we?
Ryan from Ardent Owl Media and I arrived in Dallas at 9pm, and after driving in circles for about 20 minutes looking for a parking spot we finally got in. Our timing was actually perfect, because we arrived in between sets and ENAMORED was just setting up. Wits End is a great little venue, and after saying hello to Torch, the promoter who had put this evening together, we made our way over to the merch booth to meet Jenny Mann, BLAMESHIFT’S front girl. As we walked up, she excused herself from the gentleman manning the booth with her and came over to hug us. I tell you, she is one of the nicest people you will meet! We chatted for a little bit, got her to sign our CD, and then made our way closer to the stage as ENAMORED began to play. They rocked it! I learned later that this was lead singer Donna Renee’s first show, but you never would have guessed it watching her. Her voice was clear and strong and not once did she look nervous. So shout out to Miss Donna Renee! COALITION was up next. Their high octane tunes and stage presence got the crowd pumped and ready for FIT FOR RIVALS. VERY pleased by this band. Their hardcore sound, killer tones, and intense singing made for an incredible set. I look forward to seeing them again.
And then it was time for BLAMESHIFT. I had listened to them on the internet and heard how great they were from The Maestro, our fearless leader, but nothing could have prepared me for the amount of awesome that was about to rain down on us. The lights dimmed and “Set It All Free” started playing as the band turned and started high fiving and shaking hands with one another. Fog machines shot smoke up as the band began to play “Enemy You Need” followed by “Revolution” and “Ghost”. Jenny kept encouraging the fans to sing along, but we didn’t need much persuasion. Everyone in the joint was singing or dancing or bobbing their heads. I chuckled a couple of times as Jenny would bend down and caress a fan’s head. Tim Barbour (guitar) and Mike Sarkissian (bass) occasionally leaned out and patted a few heads as well.
“Destroy Your Masquerade” got a bit entertaining when Tim’s guitar decided to cut out. A quick ax change in between his vocal parts, and he was back in action. Now, I’m not sure if this was standard or not, but the riffs that Mike was putting out during Tim’s moment on the DL were absolutely badass! “C’est La Vie” was next, and my god, the tone that Tim had gave me chills!
The stage went dark once more and a thunderous beat began. The lights flashed sporadically on the stage revealing Mike and Tim, each with their own floor tom, joining Dan Scofield (drums) in a very cool tribal drum track. Jenny added cowbell to this number before it flowed into the title track from their hit album “Secrets”.
THIS was a crowd favorite and got everyone jumping once again.
The energy and stage presence this band has is something else! These guys belong on the stage. The way Tim and Mike move around coaxing each and every member of the audience to participate is flawless. And the way that Dan plays the drums? He’s not just playing, he’s entertaining! “Figure Out a Way” was our penultimate song before the bittersweet finale of “Let Go”. What a sendoff this song was! The crowd really got behind Jenny on this one, jumping and singing at the top of our lungs. I hope they enjoyed it as much as we did!
Ladies and Gentleman, BLAMESHIFT is a top notch band. They won’t be playing in small venues for long. They act like they’re playing in the big leagues, and their music backs it up. I’m so glad I got a chance to meet, and watch them perform. Jenny, Dan, Mike, and Tim, I thank you for a kickass night of rockin’ music and I look forward to seeing you again soon!
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