Last night was one hell of a night. The last time I saw Superjoint was in 2004 at the Ventura Theater. I don’t really remember much about the show but, I do remember the sheer intensity that came pouring from the stage to the audience. Fast forward 13 years and that intensity is still pouring from the stage, only this time, it was a direct punch to the face. After being on a “hiatus” (I really hate that word) for the past 10 years, Superjoint returned with a sense of urgency and truth. Their performance this evening was beyond what I thought it would be and then some. But first let’s get to the other bands on the bill.
When I arrived at the venue and stepped inside, Child Bite was just taking the stage. I purposely didn’t check them out before seeing them, because I wanted to experience something I have never heard. Wow, was Child Bite superb. They had an energy and attitude about them, the permeated through the Whisky. Those that were there early got to witness a truly enigmatic performance. Singer Shawn Knight, is one hell of a frontman. He’s got the screams, cleans, and charisma that every frontman needs. Sean Clancy (Bass), Brandon Sczomak (Guitar) and Jeff Kraus (Drums) are tremendous and tight. The band is a very interesting group, as their influences range from Mr. Bungle/Faith No More to The Jesus Lizard, with a bit of Black Flag and a dash of Pantera. Child Bite are a band to look out for when they come through your town and steal the show.
The direct support for the evening came from Detroit, Michigan’s Battlecross. I have heard them before and Battlecross sure brought the energy. Ripping through their set, the metal was delivered. Their sound is a mix of thrash metal and a bit of metalcore. These guys know how to play and rock a stage. Battlecross are on the right track of flying the metal flag. I have to give them their due for the showmanship while playing. The guitar solos and bass solo really added a layer of enjoyment to their performance.
Now Superjoint was what the crowd was waiting for all night. Philip was looking in shape and ready to get back to doing what he does best, decimating stages and audiences. Joining Phil in Superjoint are long time guitarists Jimmy Bower and Kevin Bond and two newcomers Joey “Blue” Gonzalez on drums and Stephen Taylor on bass. Both Joey and Stephen are perfect fits for the band. From the moment the set began with the instrumental “Obilvious Maximus” you knew that Superjoint meant business. Ripping through songs from their first two albums and their new one, Caught Up In The Gears Of Applications, Phil and company have never been tighter. Not only that but, they genuinely looked like they were having a good time. Other songs like “Ozena,” “Waiting For The Turning Point,” “Fuck Your Enemy,” “The Alcoholik,” “It Takes No Guts,” and “Everyone Hates Everyone,” really stood out to me. The new songs played, sounded better live than on the album. Interestingly too, the evening’s show was being filmed for a future release. Needless to say, this was a special show. Superjoint was on fire and blazing. The crowd was into every minute of it. This was a truly great show not just for the band, but those of us who were there.
I also feel the need to mention something else. The Whisky, has really stepped up their game in regards to making the bands sound great. The new system they have in there, really makes all the difference. So, thank you to the Whisky for doing what was necessary. Next thing, is getting a credit card machine at the box office!
By: Brian Lacy