Finally have time to post a review of this.
This is a joint review. Differing opinions may be presented. Neither
reviewer is particularily familiar with Helios Creed's solo work after his
departure from Chrome, so don't expect a playlist.
HeliosCreed (and his ensemble) performed in Madison, WI at O'Cayz Corral on
the 25th of April. The opening act was "Buttress".
We were fortunate to arrive way early so we could hear Helios's drummer test
some of the equipment before leaving for a while.
"Buttress" Opened the show with aggravated hardcore punk, punctuated by some
interesting vocal feats. The quartet (bass, drums, guitar, vocalist) played
a very energetic (thought not necessarily impressive) set. Their repertoir
consisted of the typical short loud songs...with subjects ranging from breaking
a friends bigwheel as a child to Neville Chamberlain, former Prime Minister
of the UK. Although the music was reasonably competent and even entertaining
to begin with the novelty soon wore off in my opinion, and became rather
repetitious and tiring (think ad nauseum). The vocalist did manage to salvage
some of their set through a barrage of sounds, shouts, and "singing" which
almost certainly did irreprable damage to his throat and lungs. The
instrumentation, however, was only fair, despite occasional displays of
actually impressive talent.
-=> Alternate opinion: ON (bla...@cae.wisc.edu)
Interesting. The band members were fun to watch (I was fortunate enough to
be not TOO far from the stage) The guitarist looked very non-punk. More
like a jock. Still, there he was playing very punk guitar stuff. Like I said,
interesting. Also, the bassist had this weird habit of staring out into the
audience with a really psychotic gaze while playing. The vocalist definitely
won the "wierd" award for the night. First, he looked just like Bill Gates.
Second, he sometimes would do subdued, off-tune melodic parts, and about a
tenth of a second later he'd be jumping all around screeching out indecipherable
lyrics. His energy was truly impressive.
-=> Alternate opinion: OFF
Following the Buttress set some silly DJ played music while equipment on the
stage was removed and replaced.
-=> Dissenting opinion: ON
He wasn't "silly". Ya, he's a jerk who never plays requests. Also, he plays
way too much stuff off of TKK's "Sexplosion". Still, he mixes well, and half
of his stuff is pretty decent. (although it's not "REAL" industrial...cough)
-=> Dissenting opinion: OFF
After numerous soundchecks, Helios finally began his set. Needless to say
it was incredible; an hour and a half of virtuosic disortion, effects, and
noise. Helios started loud and rarely subsided. (I got my hearing back after
about 24 or 36 hours, btw. I spent most of the show in front, about 2 feet
from a speaker and five feet from the very attractive woman who did keyboards
and effects.) The bassist and drummer were also vurtuosic on their instruments.
The drummer kept a constant hammering of very complex rhythms and sharp
percussive industrial attacks that were very impressive. The bassist also
laid forth a dynamic bass line which displayed his talents to the fullest.
The attractive blond woman played sporadically at her keyboard and toyed with
some equipment and effects, and spent much of her time dancing about on the
satge; this was a welcome addition in my opinion, tho, as it didn't detract
from the sound of the others and she was an awful lot prettier than the other
people on stage. (And I assume she must have some talent or Helios would not
have selected to record with her. All of the members appear on Creed's latest
release other than the bass player, who is a new addition to the group.)
The centerpiece of the show was, of course, Helios Creed himself...
Helios was incredible. His fingers moved continuously throughout the set,
covering every point on the fingerboard of his guitar, as he unleashed
rapidly changing chord patterns and tight solo strains. The distortion and
feedback were, characteristic of Helios, used to full effect. Creeds hands
only left the quitar to manipulate various effects. The show was long, loud,
and noisy. And there was more than enough rhythmic and dynamic variation to
prevent the show from becoming the least bit tedious. (Good music to dance to
if you tend to thrash about intensely, btw.)
In conclusion, the show was incredible. (and certainly worth more than the
$5 it cost me to see it). Helios lived up to his reputation as virtuoso
of guitar and distortion, and his band was of equal caliber. It was also
an extremely intense show. If Helios plays in your area I would highly
recommend seeing the show. (ANd you sould probably all run out to buy all
his albums too...'cause I said you should.)
-=> Alternate opinion: ON
Not much to add. Had a fun moshpit (not huge, not ultra-violent, but a nice
fun moshpit). I was pretty sore from dancing the night before, but I still
tried to participate for awhile. Fun show. Really nothing more to add
regarding the music.
-=> Alternate opinion: OFF
--Mitch Blank (bla...@cae.wisc.edu)