Lookout Lounge was packed Friday night (3/22) as Hybrid Theory (Linkin Park tribute) and Chop Suey! (System of a Down tribute) tore the house down!
I’m not a musician, but I have to imagine playing in a tribute band is difficult, possibly even more difficult than playing originals because there is so much to live up to.
You’re not just playing songs, you’re recreating a part of someone’s life. Linkin Park and System of a Down have been a massive presence in the rock and metal scene for the last 20 years and it’s obvious the impact they’ve had on the next generation of bands and rock fans.
When I saw the event page come across my feed I was instantly curious and a bit skeptical that the show could be pulled off properly. I was quickly relieved of any doubt because both of these bands put on a killer show!
I arrived to find a packed room of metal fans patiently waiting for Chop Suey! to take the stage. As the band arrived and started to sound check I worked my way to the front.
As soon as the band started playing B.Y.O.B the room exploded! This was a great song for early in the set with lyrics like “Everybody’s going to the party, have a really good time.” Everyone WAS singing along having the best time! Also, I couldn’t believe how on point Chop Suey’s playing was! From the vocals to the drums and guitars, everything sounded completely authentic. Singer Derrek even had the eye twitches and screams just like Serj!
My favorite part hands down was “Prison Song.” There’s just something about that whisper “They’re trying to build a prison…” followed by that huge breakdown then a complete shredfest!
All the hits were played and even a few deep cuts. The set closed with “Sugar” and the place just erupted. Derrek thanked everyone for coming out for their first show and I was just blown away. First show? These guys sounded like they had been playing together a long time.
I’m gonna need have someone else on the team take photos next time Chop Suey! plays because I want to be in the pit, at least for “Prison Song.” Don’t miss out, make sure you catch Chop Suey! soon.
After Chop Suey! it was time for the headliner Hybrid Theory.
As soon as the guitar tapping of “Paper Cut” kicked in everyone in the room screamed with excitement. Linkin Park had arrived!
Working their way through hit after hit, Hybrid Theory set the room on fire. Like System of a Down, recreating a behemoth act like Linkin Park is no easy task and Hybrid Theory did a great job. The only piece that was missing was some of the electronic elements of the Hybrid Theory album.
I was introduced to Linkin Park a few months before Hybrid Theory was released when they played at the Ranch Bowl opening for Kottonmouth Kings. I bought a shirt and they gave me a white cassette tape. It had “One Step Closer” on one side and “With You” on the other. I was instantly attracted to the electronic/metal mashup sound.
The band did provide some snippets of electronics via laptop but without having a full DJ setup I imagine it’s hard to recreate every single sample, etc. It’s ok though. I don’t believe the band’s intent was to completely recreate every part of Linkin Park. They were just trying to have a good time remembering the songs we all know and love, and on that note they did an outstanding job.
Towards the end of the set Hybrid Theory pulled out a keyboard and did a five part harmony of “Crawling.” The room was singing so loud you almost couldn’t hear the band!
You could tell that Linkin Park meant a lot to the fans in attendance. Everyone in the room was singing their hearts out!
Hybrid Theory closed out the set with “One Step Closer” and invited Derrek from Chop Suey! to help them out. The room was pulsing from wall to wall. The pit opened up and fans went wild!
After the last song, the crowd loudly chanted “One more song!”
Lead singer Blake told the fans that they already played all the songs they learned and they would have to come to another show to see more.
Judging by the absolute party that went down, I’m sure they’ll have no problem filling the Lookout again. If they team up with Chop Suey! for a part 2 I have a good feeling they could sell out Lookout or even maybe the Waiting Room!
Only time will tell, but I look forward to seeing both of these bands again.
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