Promoting Las Vegas Arts & Culture

Battle of the Bands: Nevada and California

By: Michael M. Humel

Bands from Nevada and California took the stage at the Artifice on November 9th for a heavy metal show produced by Nevermore Productions. The show had a fun, mellow opening act that sounded more like a mixture between ska and reggae.
Good Greens opened the show as a two piece. They were missing multiple members of their band. However, I still enjoyed the stripped down acoustic sound of their music. The band lyrics were about realistic, socially conscious subjects. I always enjoy a band more when they are talking about relatable subject matter. In the song “Everynight” they talk about alcohol abuse. The song “Get Me High” talks about drug use and has elements of reggae and ska. In “Life I Lead” Zen One gives his best guitar performance as well as one of his best vocals. Randall Logan’s saxophone in “Always on My Mind” was reminiscent of the Dave Matthews Band. The band Twenty8 was also one of the performers that night. The best part of their set for me was when they played softer songs. When they played harder songs they started to mesh together and sound the same. “Tradewinds” was the best vocal performance by Tate McDonald and one of the best overall songs in the entire set. “Mist” highlighted bassist Chad Smith with a solo and I wanted to hear more.
Lead singer of Revolve Chase Grijalva from Nevada had a strong stage presence. The music was loud yet not overbearing. While watching their show I was reminded of Pantera and Rage Against The Machine. They seemed to have that melodic heavy metal style I most enjoy. The two vocal styles between the singers gave the performance a diversity that at times made it seem like they were two bands in one. Chase has a low rumble voice as well as a softer more melodic tone. The bass player and back up vocalist Wilfred Leonard McLean has a standard heavy metal dark growl in his voice. “Who we are” had a slower more musical side that transitioned easily from soft to hard. “Disaster” supplied power as well as energy despite the fact that the vocals were slower. The guitar solos throughout their set was one of the highlights for me.
Behind the Fallen from California was also a multi-vocalist band. Lead vocalist Johnny Presley had an infectious stage presence that raised the energy level in their set. In the song “You’re Just A Friend” Presley’s vocals were more hard rock rather than heavy metal and became his best vocal performance of the night. Drummer Stevie Peralta gave an energetic and hard pounding performance in the song “One Last Chance” Adrian Estrella lead singer of Assuming We Survive had the most energy and the best stage presence of any of the singers during the entire night. During certain songs he even went closer to the audience and let them sing the vocals so they would feel like part of the show. The guitar on the second track they played was one of my favorites during the entire night.


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