There are certain bands/artists that over the years I’ve become rather enthralled by. One of which is Greg Puciato. I still remember the first time I heard Greg in The Dillinger Escape Plan and thinking that this voice and presence is something to really pay attention to. And that I did. Through the years, Greg has become one of my favorite lyricists, vocalists and performers. When it was announced that Greg was going to be putting out a solo release, needless to say I was excited. What we got in the course of two years are three releases has taken the best of what Greg does and melded it into one project. Child Soldier: Creator Of God, Fuck Content and Mirrorcell have been some of the best releases in the past years and I can only imagine what the next release will be. The live show debut that I attended was something else. It was everything I wanted and then some.
Taking the stage a few minutes after 11pm, the crowd roar was getting louder and then the oddest intro song started it all, Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me,” and then things got started as “In this Hell You Find Yourself” went right into “Reality Spiral” with a go straight for the throat approach. From there it only kept cutting deep with “No More Lives To Go.” The first song Greg released as a solo artist “Fire For Water” was next and the crowd response from that song was overtaking you basically didn’t even get caught in the mini technical mishap. The recovery from that was impeccable and made the song go ever harder than it was. After that it was just an onslaught of songs that not only are stand outs on the albums but truly some of my favorite songs that are a part of these releases. Songs like “Deep Set,” “Do You Need Me To Remind You,” “Absence As A Presence,” and “Down When I’m Not” were just banger after banger, and Greg and the band were on fire at this point. Then the moment that brought it all together was when the next two songs were played. “Lowered” the first single off of Mirrorcell was performed with the additional vocals of Reba Meyers. What a performace. The way Greg’s and Reba’s voices match and play off each other is sublime. It was one of those moments that had everyone in the audience completely drawn into. My favorite song of the set was next and it hit me more than I thought it would. That song would be “Never Wanted That.” This song just hits me in a way that I can’t (and won’t get into at the moment) put into words at the moment. After that going into “All Waves To Nothing” really hit me in another way that gave me chills in a such a great way. Followed by a short “encore break,” the fun continued as “Creator Of God” was the perfect way to come back out. From there a surprise cover of the Carpenter Brut song “Imaginary Fire” was performed (Greg provides the vocals on this track). Then it went into another couple favorites of mine “A Pair Of Questions” and the ever awesome and explosive “Evacuation.” Ending the set and the night was the great “September City.” It was quite the perfect way to end this debut show.
Opening the night was Trace Amount. His mix of industrial and noise gave the night a bit of a nervous yet frenzied energy as to what was to come later on. It was interesting to see this live and see how physical the performance was. After Trace Amount was a band that I’ve been curious about live too, Gost. Gost brought in a more Industrial sound mixed with a bit of EDM that really got the crowd pumped up. Looking around the room and seeing people dance was quite fun to see. Both bands gave energetic performances and prepared the crowd with just enough of an excitement that when Greg and his band hit the stage, it all exploded into something spectacular.
For a debut show, despite the few technical issues, it was absolutely superb. Even the odd choice of venue added to the charm of the night. It’s really quite awesome to see someone that has inspired and influenced you putting it all out there under their own name and delivering material that is this damn good and then being able to put on a show that not only will stand out but left a lasting impression on those of us that have been so drawn into the work of the artist. The band that Greg put together for this show was outstanding. I will say that having Chris Hornbrook on drums is kind of a cheat code as he is just so damn good. And the way he plays fits Greg’s style so well, that it’s a perfect combination. Guitarists Nick Rowe and James Hammontree were great together and then holding down that low end was Jeff Geisser. I can’t wait for the next show! I left this show on such a high it took forever to come down from it. Even the long ass drive home I was still pumped from this night. Thank you Greg and company for a night that I won’t forget and for the songs that I have yet to stop listening to since they came out! I’m sure there is more that I could ramble on about but, I’d much rather leave it at this and say, when the time comes and Greg’s solo show rolls through your city, don’t hesitate to go see it. What a show!
Review and Photos By: Brian Lacy
01) In This Hell You Find Yourself
02) Reality Spiral
03) No More Lives To Go
04) Fire For Water
05) Deep Set
06) Do You Need Me To Remind You
07) Absence As A Presence
08) Down When I’m Not
09) Lowered (with Reba Meyers)
10) Never Wanted That
11) All Waves To Nothing
12) Creator Of God
13) Imaginary Fire (Carpenter Brut Cover)
14) A Pair Of Questions
16) September City (with “One Of Us Is The Killer tease”)