The entourage that accompanies ANGEL VIVALDI, is always a killer group. Angel seems to latch on to some of the most kickass shredders around and July 1, 2018 and The Rail Club in Fort Worth was no exception.
First of all, let me give a shout out to The Rail Club. Over the past six months to a year, they have become such a better live venue. Several years ago, I almost dreaded shooting there and knew it would be a huge challenge because the lighting was just awful. It’s not like that anymore and the sound system is better as well. Although makeshift, there is now an actual upfront stage photo pit. They also have a fairly decent colored spotlight show. All our bands on this July night had great lighting, except one: the headliner ANGEL VIVALDI. But I can tell you, it was because that’s the way he wanted it. All experience with a camera became a challenge at that point.
The night began with local Arlington band NEWLOVE. I personally had not heard them before, but where we live, I hear “new” bands all the time. One good thing about living here in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area is that we have a huge variety of bands. They did a great job. Next up was HYVMINE. On tour from Los Angeles, CA, the boys tore it up. A progressive metal sound and not real heavy, the HYVMINE boys stomped their original pieces into our brains. Possessing the guns which rival Ralf Scheepers’ of PRIMAL FEAR, Al Joseph, strong armed and shredded his way through their set. Joseph has an ominous stage presence but when it comes to playing solos all your focus goes to his playing. A masterful guitarist and very solid band.
Up next was DAY OF RECKONING. Brutally assaulting the stage with their brand of thrash metal, they were definitely the heaviest of the bands playing. In fact they were so loud, I honestly could not make out what the hell they were playing. Rusty Cooley was smoking the strings, but I literally could not make out what he was playing. It was sort of disappointing because I love a good shredder, but alas I’m either going deaf (which is probably true) or ….no, it was too fucking loud. A good band I’m sure, but gents please turn it down to 11 next time OK?
I had a ticket to the meet and greet with VIVALDI, which included playing a backing track with this guy. So guess what, I chickened out. I had a little something done, but when you know the greatness of this guy and what he can do with a 7-string guitar, well I just couldn’t bring myself to go. Not a big deal I suppose. Water under the bridge. Anyway, I was sitting in the balcony when VIVALDI began his set. NO FRONT LIGHTING and dark. Crap!! Anyway, I got some “creative” shots with a high 3200 ISO (Camera buffs will understand).
The last time I saw him, also at The Rail Club, he had a very long set, but I must say, about the sixth song, as I was really getting into his show, it ended. This wasn’t gonna be a six song set. Seriously? I’m not really sure if it was planned or not. They seemed to be having difficulty between songs, waiting for backing tracks to begin, but It didn’t seem well organized. You know, live music has issues, but I really don’t know what happened. It’s live for christ sake, but ending with a short set when you are the headliner and waiting for hours to see the headliner was just down right disappointing.
The bands were excellent as usual for a VIVALDI tour. I got to hear some new stuff I’d not heard before and that’s what going to these smaller shows is all about. The one thing the big name shows don’t do is bring along bands that not many people have heard before and give them exposure. It’s great the headliners bring these other bands to these smaller gigs to help the world discover them. This happens almost every time I go. I love the big shows, but these smaller ones are the most fun. Salude’
LIVE IMAGES AND WORDS: MARK “\M/ETAL \M/ESSIAH” EHRLICH/M EHRLICH PHOTOGRAPHY