Story and Photos: Spencer Fleming
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Now back to the story....
Back in February I got an invite to shoot the band Spite at the Reverb Lounge in Omaha. I checked them out on Spotify to get a feel for the show, but seeing it live was such a trip. Before I get into Spite there were several openers that deserve a shout-out. Let's get to it!
The first band up was Iced Wrist from Lincoln. These guys are making good on the "Big Things Coming Soon" local band promise. A couple months back they opened for the up-and-coming Lorna Shore, now Spite, and they also have new music on the way!
I noticed they brought a nice group from Lincoln along with them and unlike some Omaha bands (not naming names), they and their crew stayed for the entire show. I assumed their support fans were from Lincoln when I noticed one of the kids was wearing a Credentials shirt. Love those dudes!
Iced Wrist did a great job warming things up. Their brutal blast beats, heavy riffs, and primal screams got the room moving early. There were a few karate kicks flying and the fists were pumping. Towards the middle of the set a guy came flying from the back of the stage and just collided into the karate kickers. It was pretty wild. He later came up for some guest vocals and the crowd was into it.
Big shout out to Iced Wrist for bringing the love from the local scene. Honestly, if these guys keep up the great work they could be getting some support slots or even do their own headline run soon. Make sure to give them a follow so you can say "I saw them when".
Next up was Bodybox from Florida. This was a fun set. The guys had a lot of jokes and brought the party vibes. I stopped by their merch booth and all their designs were hilarious. They had Dale Earnhardt Jr. spoofs, Joe Dirt bootlegs, and stickers that said "Support your local coke dealers". You can tell they don't take themselves too seriously. While they were sound-checking the mic the lead singer was singing "Cum On Feel The Noize" by Quiet Riot.
I don't know if the lead singer was for real or just joking but he said "I've never been out of the state of Florida, but I love partying with all you strangers", hilarious. Bodybox had a lot of energy for a band that polishes off a whole bottle of Jaeger at every show. Their 25 minute set of hardcore tunes kept the good vibes going and I know the band was stoked to see so many people coming out to support.
After Bodybox was the band Vatican. Before the show started I peeped their merch booth and noticed they had a new album Ultra. I quickly made the connection that I've been seeing the album cover in my feed a lot lately. I would say it's just the Zuck tracking my every move and knowing I like all kinds of rock and metal, but there were some positive reviews and press releases out there about it. With all the buzz going I was excited to see what the band would bring to their set.
Vatican hit the stage and the energy instantly got turned up to 11. These guys were awesome! They had a little different take with more of a tech-metal sensibility. The crowd was into it in a big way. There were tons of karate dancers which eventually melded into a circle pit.
I noticed one kid was going off with the windmill kicks but I'm not sure the crowd appreciated it so much. Even in an extreme metal show there's an unwritten rule of "try not to actually kick anyone with your karate dancing". You could sense the herd was being disturbed. Some of his moves were actually landing blows and each time it happened everyone looked at each other like "who's gonna do something about this?"
Eventually I saw a little skirmish and sure enough some dude just took the "Karate Kid" to the ground! Alas, the young karate dancer was un-phased. He emerged from the pit with some bloody scrapes and an even bigger attitude. It's almost as if the takedown gave him more energy! Two songs later he decides to do a barrel roll off the monitors as if the crowd will catch him. There were a lot of people in the room but it definitely wasn't packed in enough for stage diving yet. So he essentially kicks the four kids in the front and just falls on the floor. I guess my point is read the room karate dancers, haha!
After Vatican slayed the stage with their tech-metal awesomeness it was time for Boundaries.
I had never heard Boundaries before but they were a lot of fun. They took the energy Vatican brought and turned it up another notch. With all scream vocals, doomy riffs, and blast beats, they definitely brought the heavy.
The crowd raged on with a lot of pitting and even a crowd surf from the Lincoln punk rocker Spike!
Not long after Boundaries I looked around the room to see a bunch of dudes stretching. At any other show this would look really weird, but at an extreme metal show this is totally commonplace. Still, you know it's about to go down when dudes are prepping, haha. Sure enough, as soon as Spite started to get into formation several dudes were jumping around just waiting for that first riff to hit.
The crowd was pumped, calling out "Spite Cult, Spite Cult!" Things were pretty packed in by now and the room was getting hot. Spite was on fire right out of the gate as they unleashed a fury of death riffs and blast beats. I stayed to the sides to try and avoid the colossal mosh pit going down. Karate dudes, slam dudes, and the muscled-up hardcore dudes were melding together like some kind of metal-scene bouillabaisse.
As the headliner Spite did a great job taking all the energy that was building and just blowing the roof off. The crowd was going wild to the raging intensity. Eventually everything culminated in a wall of death!
This was a really fun show. I don't normally listen to crazy heavy stuff on a day-to-day basis, but coming out and seeing all the wild characters that the scene brings and the passion among the fans is definitely worth the trip. If you're able to step out of your comfort zone and just enjoy the atmosphere, consider an extreme metal show the next time you step out!
Huge thanks to Spite and Cosa Nostra PR for the photo access.
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