Friday, January 14, 2011

Rock-It 27: Live on Stage 31.12.10
(A Blast from the Past to Ring in the New)

It is three minutes to midnight. It is three minutes to a new year. In three minutes time 2010 will be gone for always. I am speeding up and down the highway looking for a sign of Pablo Dante’s. The day that I’m on time, the devil’s coming to claim my soul. As the fireworks start to explode and cascade in the darkened, night sky, I think my soul is safe.

Finally we are here. Finally we have arrived. I hurry towards the sounds of Goo Goo Dolls’ Slide. I hurry towards the sounds of Vertical Horizon’s Everything You Want and Incubus’ Wish You Were Here. I hurry towards the sounds of Rock-It 27 ... finally. I’ve wanted to review this band since the inception of this blog. It feels fitting that I should do so tonight.

They’re the perfect cocktail of nostalgia and novelty with which to toast goodbye to the old year while ringing in the newness of 2011. The music they cover and create is the reason I began listening to rock, the reason I walk the path of metal today. As the sounds of Red Hot Chilli Peppers’ Californication come crashing down around us, it is as reflective and redolent as all the stirring renditions of Auld Lang Syne I’m certain are being sung in unison across the island tonight. Gratitude stirs silently within me for these musical roots.

Rock-It 27 is an experienced quartet of well-honed musicians with a solid skill set, reminiscent of alternative when it was closer to groove and grunge and farther away from the overproduced, over-processed pop with a pinch of distortion that it is today. Their sound is dark and hard, pulsating and hypnotic. Between the smoky, stormy and sometimes sultry precision of Alex Cummins's lead vocals and rhythm guitar, the sweet, savoury, soulful reverb of Danny Watson’s lead guitar and backing vocals, the deep, pounding throb of Ryan Royer’s bass and the swift flash, thrash and hammer of Harry Watson’s drumsticks, they have found the perfect blend for the band they have become. I only wish there were more people here to hear this.

As I hear the closing chords of Papa Roach’s Of Angels and Insects transition seamlessly into one of my all-time personal favourites, Foo Fighters’ Everlong, it puts me in a Rockit State of Mind like little else could in this moment, without leaving me feeling Jaded or Fallen as much else would have (this is an inside joke, lol). In all seriousness however, as my Old Year Night becomes my New Years Day, and we shift ever so slightly across the space of our lives by one more man-made marker to the sound of Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit and Kryptonite by Three Doors Down, I am once again filled with gratitude for these musical roots, and for the band that gave me the best Old Years Night experience I have ever had on this island. Thanks guys ... and a Happy New Year to you all ^_^


Lead vocalist and rhythm guitar,
Alex Cummins

Lead guitarist, backing vocalist,
Danny Watson

Bassist, Ryan Royer

Drummer, Harry Watson


Sunday, January 2, 2011

Christmas Traffic in the City 28.12.10

Christmas Day has gone, but the spirit of the season lingers. The night air is chilled on the time of year and Bump and Wine is barer than Scrooge’s cupboard. I have a question to ask. Confirmed that Fighting Traffic will be playing here tonight, I seek a table and wait for the show to begin.

They say first impressions are lasting, but they never say they can be blown away by second, third and fourth impressions. When the band opens with Maroon 5’s Harder to Breathe, I think it is an average cover of a rather average song; decent but largely typical and remarkably uninspired.

When they follow it up with their original, and title track of their debut album, Don’t Worry About It however, I am intrigued by the full rich swell of the vocals, stunned by the sudden transformation of the musicianship and flat-out floored by the tonally heavy sound of the band itself. They are commanding.

But now they are playing Tokio Hotel’s Automatic. My heart comes to a screeching halt on principle alone. No alternative rock band should be covering emo pop. I could write a book on why not, but that would move the subjective into the personal, and so we move on ... It is a good cover ... I guess ... grudgingly >_>

They make up for it though. With a soaring set composed of U2’s Vertigo, Coldplay’s Viva La Vida, Snow Patrol's Chasing Cars and a slew of other confident covers of likeable pop music such as Gavin DeGraw’s I Don’t Wanna Be, they manage to remove the memory of Top 40 fluff from my ears and resume giving me an expressive and enjoyable experience that was well worth the while I waited.

Theirs is a smooth, sensual, seasoned sound, composed of atmospheric, tonally dulcet and aurally dynamic vocals, deep, effortless, natural bass, the tight, thick, heavy timbre of the guitar and the movement and momentum of driving, stirring, almost tribal drums. It is powerful and beautiful, fluent and gripping.

Lyrically eloquent and outstanding originals grab and absorb my attention, and seem to transfix the turn out tonight. Favourites amongst them are Wherever You Are, Dream and Find A Good Woman. Reaching in mood from grandiose to nostalgic, wistful to up-beat, they are easy to listen to and very emotionally-evocative in scope and in scale. But still the audience only ever claps on cue politely.

It is a sadness and a tragedy that when crowds are called upon to show their appreciation and satisfaction for the energetic entertainment afforded them, they hesitate and hang back, not knowing how to move forward, how to take part in the synergetic process between art and audience or how to express their feelings for the experience that they are there to enjoy. They do however manage to clap on cue politely ... each and every single time >.<

Despite falling a little flat at times in the song selection department, having slight technical and tonal issues with feedback from both guitar and crowd, Fighting Traffic is a great band of guys who work and play well together. They keep it real, rhythmic and well-polished. Their music is effectual, enjoyable and excellent to listen to. Their sound is incredibly international, tremendously catchy and as classy and as epic as alternative will get. You should go and experience them for yourself reader. They are well worth the while you’ve waited.

Join the movement and metal on! Follow us here and like us on Facebook for future articles, reviews, interviews, videographies, updates, live footage and all your insights into Barbadian rock bands and the local rock scene of Barbados!

Knicky Laurel,
 Metal Faerie.

... Christmas Day has gone, but the spirit of the season lingers ... \m/


Lead Vocalist, Carlos Baptiste

Lead and Rhythm Guitarist,
Kevin Jack

Bassist, David Thomas

Drummer, Melvin Alick


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Standing Penance Xmas Pajama Rock Party 18.12.10

Lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist deathly sick. Lead guitar set up laced in so much chorus, delay and distortion it is unpleasantly piercing to the ear. No rehearsals that week. Sounds like a recipe for disaster doesn’t it?

Welcome back to Metal Faerie Reviews reader. I know it’s been a while, but we only write here when there is something to say, and we have something to say about the Standing Penance Xmas Pajama Rock Party.

It was damn good.

Fans flocked in droves, decked in oversized ripped t-shirts and boy shorts, silk robes and kimono nightgowns, layered camisoles and vests and pajama bottoms, boxers and towels and ties. They took the theme seriously, and despite the absence of eggnog everywhere, they took the spirit of the party even more so.

Inconsequential issues such as an initially incoherent flow and feel to the set aside, the guys and girl of Standing Penance still managed to deliver a full, heavy, submersive sound to make muggles and metalheads alike move their bodies and break their necks.

It was damn good.

The atmosphere in the pit was as energetic and as electrifying as always. Fans didn’t rock out like it was the last party of the year; they rocked out like it was the last party of their lives. They egged on the band and got excited about the music; they cheered and chanted with every song played; they banged their heads and moshed their hearts to crippling cathartic completion and fulfilment.

Standing Penance delivered on the hardcore and the heavy without fail as always, and has remained, at each and every single one of their rock parties all year round, undefeated, unchallenged and uncontested as the most metal of all alternative to hard rock bands on island to date. We cannot wait for more next year guys and a Moshin’ Merry Christmas to you too! \m/^_^\m/

It was damn good.

Rock On!
Knicky Laurel,
Metal Faerie \m/


Lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist, 
Steve "Tearhead" Johnson.

Lead guitarist, backing vocalist,
Jehan "Hanjible" Sattaur.

Bassist, Cherise "Valkyrie" Inniss

Drummer, Lexx Lorico.

Andre Shepherd, loyal fan of the band.

Testament, pulling a King of Pop
for the band that rocks!

The money shot. This is how you move to Metal!


Barbadian Hard Rock Band Standing Penance performing their original, Fade, from their debut album My Pain!

Barbadian Hard Rock Band Standing Penance performing their original, Do Not Bury Me, from their debut album My Pain!

Barbadian Hard Rock Band Standing Penance performing their original, Live My Life Today, from their debut album My Pain!

 Thank you for following us!
Join the movement and Rock On!
\m/ Metal ^_^ Faerie \m/

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Vacant Head Space

Vacluse Plantation, St. Thomas, Barbados

231-6688 • 233-8906


Interview with Metal Faerie Blog


Knicky Laurel,

Metal Faerie

#60, 11th Avenue, Wanstead Drive, Cave Hill, St Michael, Barbados.

424-4203 • 830-5075