Prong: No Absolutes Live At Trees Dallas!!

PRONG came back to Trees Dallas last week on their No Absolutes Tour and I got a second chance to see them. The first time I caught them was when they were opening for OVERKILL in 2014. In fact, that was my first time at Trees, too! The Maestro and I had a great time at that show, so I was looking forward to seeing them again this time as a headliner!


The night started out with local opener, IN MEMORY OF MAN. They’re a groovy, hard rockin’ party band. If you’ve read some of my previous articles, you’ll know I’m a sucker for good harmonies, so I really perked up when I heard these guys go for, and nail, some pretty tight ones. In conjunction with some solid drumming (tribal at times), interesting soaring prog rock melodies and good old fashion heavy metal, all fronted by a rather impressive vocal range, these guys really put together an interesting set. I’ll certainly be catching them again.


Next up was DESIGNED IN KAOS. I’ve been told on multiple occasions, by multiple people that I really needed to catch one of their sets, and by the sheer number of D.I.K. shirts in the crowd, I got the feeling they’re a local favorite. You can definitely hear the MARILYN MANSON/NINE INCH NAILS Influences with a heavy nod toward industrial metal, particularly in their usage of techno samples and grungy tones.  Unfortunately I’ve never really been able to get into that genre, but visually, (I’m a photographer, after all) they were quite entertaining.


Next up was RIVETHEAD, who are definitely a local favorite.  As was the case with DESIGNED IN KAOS, I had also been advised to catch these guys. I finally got the chance to hear at least part of their set at the recent Deep Ellum Arts Festival last month. I really enjoyed what I saw then, so I was pumped to have the opportunity to catch them again in a full set. One thing RIVETHEAD is really good at is working the crowd, and they wasted no time getting the energy truly cranked up in their enthusiastic fans. These guys have a really modern heavy metal sound, reminiscent of DISTURBED with a bit of electronic rock thrown in. With seriously heavy riffs, thunderous drumming, and heavy hitting bass work, they certainly set the stage well for the guys in PRONG.


Then it was time for the main feature. Having seen them before, I knew I needed to be up at the front of the stage by the time they started, or I wouldn’t be able to push my way through. So I camped out and waited. The anticipation in the fans was palpable. Soon, the familiar riffs of Cheech & Chong’s “Earache My Eye” could be heard. “My momma talkin’ to me tryin’ to tell me how to live” The crowd jumped all over it, and sang along at the top of their lungs – “But I don’t listen to her cause my head is like a sieve”. Decent walk out music, eh?


At last PRONG appeared.  The crazed audience went nuts. The next few songs were a flurry of activity for me. PRONG, as always, firewalled it. The energy from these guys was infectious and quickly spread to the crowd. After I had spent a song and a half up front, I withdrew from my coveted position, which was quickly claimed, and dodged and ducked my way to the side of the stage. Then, in most athletic, ninja fashion, crossed to the other side. (This set of actions was repeated a few more times.) At the end of their regular set, they waved to the fans and disappeared into the darkness. The fans cheered and clapped for a while. After a few minutes the applause started to die down a bit.


Then the bass wielding Jason Christopher appeared out of nowhere and shouted to the the audience: “Will you make some fuckin’ noise!?! We’re not done yet!!!” This resulted in a most pleasing roar from the excited concert goers. They came back with “Snap Your Fingers, Snap Your Neck”, obviously a crowd favorite, followed by “For Dear Life” and “Revenge Best Served Cold.” But they didn’t stop there, oh no. They had one more song up their sleeve: “Power of the Damager.” Then that was it. They thanked their faithful fans, promising to come back soon. I could see the excited faces of the crowd as they shuffled past me, surely to go pay their tab and locate their friends. Once again, PRONG didn’t disappoint.



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