Extreme Thing, Desert Breeze Park, Las Vegas, NV., April 2, 2016
Bands Reviewed: Escape The Fate, The Maine, Shotty, Enterprise Earth, Violent New Breed, and A Poison Alibi
After taking off for a one year hiatus, Extreme Thing triumphantly returned to Desert Breeze Park in Las Vegas, presenting some of the finest touring acts as well as several exciting up-and-coming local bands. Headlined by the Saosin reformation, Mayday Parade and Dance Gavin Dance, this year’s edition of Extreme Thing featured a grand total of five stages as well as sporting events taking place throughout the park.
The weather did not exceed 78 degrees, making for the perfect day out in the sun! All this and a complimentary water stand was available for those savvy enough to seek it out. The mood was one of celebration as metal, hardcore, pop punk. deathcore, rock, ska, and a whole lot of other genres came together to present an unforgettable show just on the outskirts of the legendary Sin City.
Here are a few of the bands Highwire Daze checked out on a gorgeous Saturday in April. (Pictured at left: Craig Mabbit of Escape The Fate)
A Poison Alibi
The first time this reviewer encountered A Poison Alibi was last year at Treasure Fest in Santa Fe Springs, CA where the band unleashed an explosive performance on the tiniest of stages. Since then, the Las Vegas based collective has self-released an EP Through Pain & Peril and won a coveted slot to play the XPOZ Stage through their Battle Of The Fans competition. A Poison Alibi kicked off Extreme Thing 2016 with a bang, launching headfirst into a high energy set of post hardcore and melodic rock.
Featuring a very charismatic membership and the exhilarating songs to back it all up, A Poison Alibi certainly left an indelible impression of the early arrivals. Their setlist included Irony, Losing My Mind, Take Another Dose, Where Did You Go, Stories, and Tonight. Expect to hear a lot more from A Poison Alibi in the months ahead, especially if their live show is indicative of greater glories ahead.
Be sure to check out A Poison Alibi opening up for Survive This! at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas on May 6th!
A Poison Alibi on Facebook
Violent New Breed
Violent New Breed is the new band from Max Green, formerly of Escape The Fate and Falling In Reverse, and it’s a project well worth seeking out. They recently concluded a cross country tour opening for Drowning Pool, and were now at Extreme Thing to rip the Findlay VW Stage apart early on. Songs such as Only The Strong Survive, Rumors and Broken Soul tore into the heart of the matter, showing a hard rocking band that was passionate and intriguing.
Green is a highly effective front man and guitarist, bringing a sense of danger as well as life experience into the searing live performance. The other Violent New Breeders scorched the stage with their fiery performance, including Mikey Alfero on lead guitar, Brent Ashley on bass and vocals, and James their stand-in drummer. Be sure to check out their just unveiled self-released EP VNW and support these guys when they show up to terrorize your town!
Stay tuned to Violent New Breed’s Facebook page to find out more about their future adventures!
Violent New Breed on Facebook
To state this plainly and distinctly, Enterprise Earth is one of the most mesmerizing new deathcore bands on this dying planet and beyond. Even in broad daylight, the hyper-intensity this band presents in their live show can set the imagination in flight. The band blew the roof off the White Oak Music & Arts in Van Nuys a few months ago, and it was exciting to see them spread their infectious chaos all over the Vegas Indoor Skydiving Stage at Extreme Thing.
Whether it’s the ferocious vocal inflection of front man Dan Watson, the otherworldly guitar work or the relentless pulsating rhythm section, Enterprise Earth will launch you into a whole other realm of consciousness – if not into the confines of a rabid slam pit. Performing songs culled mostly from their Patient 0 release on Stay Sick Recordings as well as an earlier cut entitled Masquerade Of Angels, Enterprise Earth clearly won over a good amount of new fans as well as thoroughly impressed the already initiated. A stunning show of cosmic strength from a band ready to dropkick your ass into the next galaxy.
Enterprise Earth will be joining Whitechapel and Fit For A King on the Decade Of The Blade Tour! Expect a glorious amount of sonic devastation!
Enterprise Earth on Facebook
Speaking of the wonderful mixtures of genres at Extreme Thing, one of the big winners of the Battle Of The Fans competition was hip hop/rapper Shotty, who took over the XPOZ Stage in an epic way. With inspiring songs and a killer freestyle technique, the charismatic Shotty definitely gained the attention of the Extreme Thing crowd. Even if you aren’t a fan of hip hop, it’s hard not to be swept away by the Shotty’s sheer enthusiasm and the striking infectiousness of the songs.
In addition to Shotty’s skillful performance, live drummer TJ Raucci brought the songs to an ultra-vivid life with his own brand of decisive intensity. Fans of Grieves and Watsky may want to check into what the up-and-coming Shotty has to offer. Expect this rapper from Sin City to break it out into the big leagues, especially with live performance this exciting!
Be sure to check out Shotty’s YouTube page to find out a lot more about this hardworking artist well on his way to the top!
Shotty on Facebook
It was time to visit the Real Water Stage to check out The Maine, a pop rocking band from Arizona. Opening with the vibrant refrains of American Candy from the latest album of the same name, it did not take long for The Maine to attract quite a crowd. Each and every song The Maine performed was extremely memorable, with standouts being Inside Of You, Girls Do What They Want, Am I Pretty, and Diet Soda Society.
The Maine has grown tremendously since their inception in 2007. And now as they are about to celebrate their 10 year anniversary, The Maine has established themselves as a solid live act with five studio albums to their credit. Be sure to catch The Maine at the Vans Warped Tour this summer as their live show is a refreshing blast to the senses. The Maine membership consists of John O’Callaghan on vocals, Garrett Nickelsen on bass, Pat Kirch on drums, Kennedy Brock on guitar, and Jared Monaco on guitar.
American Candy by The Maine is now available from 8123 Records via Big Picnic Records!
The Maine on Facebook
Escape The Fate
It was time to make our way across Desert Breeze Park, landing at the Monster Energy Stage to check out Las Vegas’ own Escape The Fate. The band has been through several lineup changes since their beginnings in 2004 – and 2016 now finds the Sin City favorites at the very height of their craft. Their fifth studio album Hate Me was unveiled last year, revealing a band hungry and willing to launch their career into the stratosphere. In a live setting, Escape The Fate thrives, conveying their many songs with a thunderous sense of urgency and conviction. Front man Craig Mabbitt delivers the sweet rocking goods with a vengeance, easily switching between the melodic and the heavy. Kevin Thrasher shreds it up on guitar, displaying massive skills and a remarkable showmanship that is exciting to witness. Thrasher is surely one of the most underrated guitarists on the scene today. TJ Bell is also a wondrously magnetic presence who knows how to create an intensive wall of sound on guitar. And then there’s the rhythm section driving it all home with a dazzling precision, featuring original member Robert Ortiz on drums and touring member Max Georgiev on bass.
One highlight was the glorious anthem Live For Today, a song with a massive hit single potential that sounds absolutely thrilling in a live setting. Remember Every Scar is another fantastic song from the new album that really had the crowd rapturously singing along. Another unforgettable moment was at the end of the set when original member Max Green joined Escape The Fate onstage for an exhilarating rendition of This War Is Ours. Definitely the standout performance at this year’s edition of Extreme Thing!
Escape The Fate on Facebook
The rock and roll continued on, with appearances by Battle of The Fans winners Nations, The Story So Far, Mayday Parade, Dance Gavin Dance and Saosin wrapping up an unforgettable day at Extreme Thing 2016! Congrats to all involved for a very well organized, enjoyable event! Looking forward to seeing everyone at Extreme Thing 2017!
(Review by Ken Morton – Photos by Jack Lue)
Extreme Thing Official Home Page