Helmet Celebrates 30 Years + The Melvins, C.O.C. & more (Nov/2019)

Lot of great shows from the bands who's heyday may have been that crazy decade that are still going strong today.

 

Tesla - September 27th - House of Blues - Dallas

While I'm a huge fan of the genre and the era for which Tesla came up in, I admittedly never counted them as "one of my bands". Sure I liked a couple of songs and I still turn the radio up when Modern Day Cowboy or Little Suzi comes on but I've never owned one of their records.

But for some reason, this decade I've managed to see them 4 times now (including this show) and each one more enjoyable than the last so it's kinda become a thing. Better late than never right? 

For the band this tour is special, not only are they celebrating their new release Shock, but it is also the 30th anniversary of their second album The Great Radio Controversy which brought the band to mainstream recognition. 

 

I arrived a bit late but still in time to hear the aforementioned Modern Day Cowboy but all in all I'd have to say that this show was largely forgettable compared to the other times I've seen them recently. Maybe if this was your first time seeing them, you got what you came for and this  is really no fault of the band, it just didn't really have that edge to it that the other shows did. 

Band still played great & singer Jeff Keith’s vocals are still spot on. The songs sound just as they do on the albums, there isn’t a missed note or any flaw that you can point to other than this show just felt a little dull.

Setlist:

Tied to the Tracks 
Modern Day Cowboy 
Lazy Days, Crazy Nights 
Heaven's Trail (No Way Out) 
Breakin' Free 
Taste Like 
Miles Away 
Changes 
Song & Emotion 
Call It What You Want 
California Summer Song 
What You Give 
Shock 
Edison's Medicine (Man Out of Time) 
Love Song 
Little Suzi (Ph.D. cover) 
Signs (Five Man Electrical Band cover)


Corrosion of Conformity - October 1st - Canton Hall - Dallas, TX

Full disclosure I LOVE this band & I DO NOT miss them & sometimes even travel to see them when I can. They are one of my bands. 
Their most recent release in early 2018 No Cross No Crown and the following tours in support have led me to see no less 5 of these show (this one included). 
It'd been almost 9 months since the last one I saw earlier this year in Los Angeles and the cool thing is that this time around, they really changed the setlist up quite a bit. 

Probably still know mostly for 1994's landmark masterpiece Deliverance, and I love every song on it, their's a cache of tunes from it you never get to hear live and tonight that all changed. Hearing Shake Like You and My Grain was incredible! And they even played Shelter for the very first time from that LP. 
I didn't see any of the openers (for which I think their were like half a dozen) but if I'd had I would have recognized a few faces. The very first band called The Skull apparently has a few dudes I know in it. At one point Pepper Keenan while introducing Shelter mentioned they were finally able to do the song cause one of the guys in the Skull can play steel guitar and introduces Alex Johnson from one of my fave local bands The House Harkonnen. Alex is like in a million other bands and can seemingly play anything so that was super cool to see him have that moment with C.O.C. And later I see another local stalwart Henry Vasquez who went on to play with Saint Vitus is also in the band.

Setlist:

Seven Days 
Paranoid Opioid 
Shake Like You 
Forgive Me 
Heaven's Not Overflowing 
Albatross 
My Grain 
13 Angels 
Diablo Blvd. 
The Door 
Vote With a Bullet 
Who's Got the Fire 
Shelter (first time being played live ever) (w/ Alex Johnson)
Stare Too Long 
Clean My Wounds

I could never get enough of these guys & this one of my fave shows I've ever see them do. Till next time gentlemen. 

 


Halloween 2019 w/ The Melvins - October 31st - Trees - Dallas, TX

Another one of "my bands" that I never miss (though sadly I did last time they were here, BUT I caught a super rad show out in the Southern California desert earlier this Spring) Given the unpredictable nature of the band & their music & tonight being Halloween it had that air they anything truly could be possible.

Now that the show is over and you look at the setlist & pics below the show largely was no different than any other show on this tour or even anything to really even acknowledge  the occasion. Singer/Guitarist Buzz Osbourne rarely says anything at all besides his vocals and drummer powerhouse Dale Crover is much more jovial and usually leaves it to him to say the final goodbyes, thank you's etc. Doesn't mean the show didn't kick total ass.

 

Loved the setlist with tons of my faves & a big finale with bassist Steven McDonald's other band with his brother who opened the (almost) equally legendary Redd Kross doing a fun cover of Deuce by KISS. 

Setlist:

Sesame Street Meat 
The Kicking Machine 
Queen 
Anaconda 
It's Shoved 
Oven 
With Yo' Heart, Not Yo' Hands (Malfunkshun cover) 
Billy Fish 
Charlie (Redd Kross cover) 
Civilized Worm 
Hooch 
Honey Bucket 
A Growing Disgust 
Your Blessened 
The Bit 
With Teeth 
Deuce (KISS cover) (with other Redd Kross members)

After the show my buddy Tony who I always see the Melvins with struck up a conversation with their march guy Brian who has a bit of cult following himself as an illustrator who sells his own one of a kind art work at the show. He & I are Facebook friends and I was aware he was interested in the King's X film I'm currently producing & was thinking it might be cool to find a way to work together. Unfortunately I'm not a big drinker and thought it would be good idea to drink whiskey since it was Halloween and I'm an annoying drunk like most people so it was probably not my best showing. Saw Dale at the bar and struck up an equally regrettable conversation that he was visibly eager to remove himself from and for good reason. Gentlemen, my apologies. Happy Halloween.

 
 

Helmet Celebrates 30 Years - November 3rd - Trees - Dallas, TX 

Ok so just a few days later, another one of my bands was coming through, Helmet, whom I also never miss (except that one time, ya know, on my birthday when they decided to come to town and do ALL OF Betty and I somehow knew nothing of it and my so called friends who went didn't bother to tell me or offer me any sort of birthday greeting).  and always look so forward to seeing them. This tour I was so greatly anticipating that I was considering catching multiple shows and it would have been totally worth it too as on this tour to celebrate 30 years as a band, they are doing 30+ songs setlists with different shows every night!

 

 

Show was incredible & they could have played all night & I would have stayed all night. Just hear the Melvins (see above) play Oven and now just a few days removed at the same location I'm hearing Helmet cover it from their first LP - 1989's Born Annoying.  33 punishing songs including a few other covers I was hoping for like Black Sabbath's Symptom of the Universe (sadly no Bjork's Army of Me) but that was the kind of show it was. It had that super fun unpredictability that anything was possible and you had no idea what was coming. And kept coming they did. One of my fave shows of the year.

Setlist:

Milquetoast 
Renovation 
Your Head 
Give It 
Bad News 
Distracted 
Clean 
Better 
Taken 
Wilma's Rainbow 
On Your Way Down 
Birth Defect 
Overrated 
Miserable 
Rude 
Bad Mood 
Gigantor 
Unsung 
Beautiful Love 
Speechless 
Oven (Melvins cover) 
Blacktop 
Symptom of the Universe (Black Sabbath cover) 
(High) Visibility 
In Person 
Driving Nowhere 
Urine the Money (Pist*On cover) 


Encore: 

Sinatra
Sam Hell 
Repetition 
I Know 
Just Another Victim 
In the Meantime

After this marathon rock fest was over, as I'm leaving Trees, I look across the street to see some familiar faces, check out this post for the epilogue.

Photos - 

Roy Turner
John McMurtrie
Abigail Buckler

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