Psycho Las Vegas, Resorts World, Las Vegas, August 19-21, 2022

It was another amazing year at Psycho Las Vegas topped off by Mercyful Fate and Emperor.

Psycho Las Vegas is a standard stop for me. I haven’t been for a couple years because of the pandemic – the fest was cancelled in 2020 and I had to miss it at the last minute in 2021. Needless to say, I was ready to go this year. To make absolutely certain that I do not bury the lead, I will declare yet again that Psycho Las Vegas is the best heavy music festival in the US every year. No other festival has anything close to the variety and depth you see in Las Vegas. My advice: don’t ever miss it.

The bands I most wanted to see this year were Ruby The Hatchet, Mercyful Fate, Emperor, Monolord, Elder, and Mothership. Then there were at least twenty others I really, really wanted to see. The third level was chockful as well. This line-up was stacked (see the set times image to verify).

Psycho moved to a new location this year. For the past few years, the festival had been held at the Mandalay Bay. That was an excellent venue. Being in a casino allows you to stay out of the 100+ degree heat most of the time and really kick back to enjoy the music and booze and weed (recreational marijuana is legal in Las Vegas). There was a day club stage outside, but it played mostly at night, and even though the heat is brutal, without humidity, the weather outside is quite tolerable once the sun goes down. In 2020 at the Mandalay Bay, there was an event stage in an arena, a lounge stage, the House of Blues venue, and the outside stage in the evenings. Tons of music, easy to get to, all great.

This year, the festival moved to the Resorts World facility, which is only partially finished. There was an outside day club stage there, too. Then there were five other stages. The Rose Ballroom is what it sounds like – a stage set up in a giant room. The Dawg House is a sort of sports-bar-looking venue, and RedTail is another bar, a bit more serious in tone, with a small stage in it. There was also a stage set up in the food court. And finally, there was the event stage. The thing is, the event center hasn’t been built yet, to this was a huge tent –you know, with a metal fame, and imagine it forty feet high. It was big enough, surely. The main drawback was no seating; strictly SRO. Oh sure, there were a few chairs and stools in the VIP section, but not many. Indeed, this is my only real criticism of the event: the lack of seating. Of course, I am not as young as I used to be so maybe that’s why it got to me.

I did feel a little bit bad for people who were at the resort but not attending Psycho because at least four of these stages could be heard rumbling throughout the resort, well beyond the individual venue. That never really happened at Mandalay Bay because the one lounge stage in the casino area had a fairly laid back line-up. Not so this year. Can you imagine having booked vacation here not knowing Psycho was going on and having to listen to blaring metal for three days straight every time you tried to geta slice of pizza or go to the casino? Ugh. Hey, it was great for me as I was there for the music, but it didn’t go over very well for some of the other guests.

On Thursday before the festival there is Psycho Swim, which is basically a fourth day in front. Normally, this is held outside at the day club with just a few bands. This year, sets ran all day outside (it was pretty hot part of the time), and there was a parallel track at the RedTail venue. Psycho Swim is a separate ticket (for GA folks), but anybody could listen at RedTail, with or without a ticket. That is a nice bonus.

Ulver was a last-minute scratch we heard about on Thursday. It is unclear exactly what happened but, even though the visas were approved, there was some other problem that sprang up at the last second … “due to unforeseen circumstances with their local embassy, the band is unable to acquire necessary documents for all of its members to complete their travel and therefore won’t be able to perform.” That’s a bummer, and it is true that Satyricon also had dropped out fairly late in the game as well – another tough revelation. Still, I would stack this line-up against any festival this year.

The toughest choice on Thursday was Salem’s Bend started on the RedTail stage at 8:00PM and Elder started on the Ayu Dayclub Beach Club stage at 8:10PM. Brutal. But, Elder was slated to play again on Saturday on the Dawg House stage. Saved by the double set. As it turned out, it started raining and the Ayu stage was shut down during Elder’s set. That is something you definitely do not expect in Las Vegas. But that’s all right, too, because the music went on until 3:00AM or so at RedTail. And, Elder played elsewhere at 1:00AM anyway, so they got their set in. One big advantage of festivals in Las Vegas is that there are no curfews so playing late is not a big deal at all.

First band I wanted to on Friday was Sanguisugabogg at 11:00AM. Yes, in the morning. Mothership was the biggest surprise of the day for me. I like their music a lot, but had never seen them live. They put on an amazing show and moved right up to the top of my list of bands never to miss. The big story on the first night was Emperor, a band that hadn’t played in the US for sixteen years. It was absolute black metal mayhem in the big tent on Friday.

Behold The Monolith and Gatecreeper played at the same time on Saturday and that was a tough choice, to be sure. I flipped a coin and went to Behold! The Monolith. A tough choice but no losing options. The most important band on day two for me was Ruby The Hatchet. I absolutely love that band and somehow had never seen them perform in person. Jillian Taylor was incredible, and the entire band takes your breath away. I could have left at the end of their set and been happy with the weekend. The headliner on Saturday was Suicidal Tendencies, and I missed that show because I have seen them a half a dozen times in the past twelve months and, also, I had a few edibles over my limit and needed to sit down for a while. No seating in the event center so I went to the casino for an indeterminant amount of time.

Sunday was Mercyful Fate day. There is no way to overstate the anticipation. Melissa is one of my favorite albums to this day, and I started to listening to Mercyful Fate even before that, with their self-titled EP. I have seen King Diamond on stage many times, but never Mercyful Fate. Their performance is one I will remember on the last day, I swear it. It is what I remember most from Sunday, but there was a lot of other amazing music as well, like High On Fire and Monolord and Creeping Death. There was so much happening that day it is hard to keep it all in your head.

I try to always go to Psycho Las Vegas. For me, it is a vacation – I don’t photograph the festival or write articles about it. This right here that I am writing is a reminiscence as much for my benefit as anybody else’s, put down so I can look back on it later and remember it all again. I have already grabbed a ticket for Psycho Las Vegas 2023. I do not know where it will be held, but wherever it is, I will be there. See you then.

Link.

Psycho Las Vegas: https://vivapsycho.com/

Psycho Las Vegas, Resorts World, Las Vegas, August 19-21, 2022

Photo Gallery: Spirit Adrift at Piere’s, Ft. Wayne, July 31, 2022

Spirit Adrift is the special guest on Crowbar’s Riff Beast Tour. Here are some photos from their performance at Piere’s in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Photos by Wayne Edwards.

Spirit Adrift, https://spiritadrift.bandcamp.com/

Century Media, https://www.centurymedia.com/artist/spirit-adrift

Piere’s Entertainment Center, https://pieresentertainment.com/

© Wayne Edwards

Photo Gallery: Spirit Adrift at Piere’s, Ft. Wayne, July 31, 2022

Photo Gallery: Wolftooth at Piere’s, Ft. Wayne, July 31, 2022

Wolftooth was featured on the Crowbar’s Riff Beast Tour performance at Piere’s in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Photos by Wayne Edwards.

Links.

Wolftooth, https://wolftooth.bandcamp.com/

Napalm Records, https://label.napalmrecords.com/wolftooth

FFMB review of Blood & Iron, https://flyingfiddlesticks.com/2021/12/22/wolftooth-blood-and-iron-napalm-records-2021/

Piere’s Entertainment Center, https://pieresentertainment.com/

© Wayne Edwards

Photo Gallery: Wolftooth at Piere’s, Ft. Wayne, July 31, 2022

Photo Gallery: Blood of Heroes at Piere’s, Ft. Wayne, July 31, 2022

Blood Of Heroes joined Crowbar on The Riff Beast Tour for the show at Piere’s in Fort Wayne last Sunday night.

Photos by Wayne Edwards.

Links.

Blood Of Heroes, https://www.bloodofheroes.net/

Dark Star Records, https://darkstarrecords.net/artists/blood-of-heroes/

Piere’s Entertainment Center, https://pieresentertainment.com/

© Wayne Edwards

Photo Gallery: Blood of Heroes at Piere’s, Ft. Wayne, July 31, 2022

Photo Gallery: Lust Witch at Piere’s, Ft. Wayne, July 31, 2022

Indianapolis doom band Lust Witch was one of the opening acts for the Crowbar stop on the Riff Beast Tour at Piere’s in Fort Wayne, Indiana. I got to the show just as they were finishing their set so I was only able to get a couple of snaps. Photo galleries of the other bands and a show recap coming in the next couple days.

Photos by Wayne Edwards.

Links.

Lust Witch, https://www.facebook.com/Lust-Witch-110221191691214/

Piere’s Entertainment Center, https://pieresentertainment.com/

© Wayne Edwards

Photo Gallery: Lust Witch at Piere’s, Ft. Wayne, July 31, 2022

Pure Filth Festival, Sharkey’s, Liverpool, New York, June 18th 2022

The Pure Filth Festival went down at Sharkey’s Event Center in Liverpool, New York last weekend. What a day. I tell you all about it in an up-coming Ghost Cult Magazine article (link below). Meanwhile, here are a few photos to whet your appetite. The bands were Year of the Cobra, Savage Existence, Bewitcher, Extinction A.D., Carnivore AD, Integrity, Voivod, Municipal Waste, and Exodus. There are one or two (or three) photos of each band that won’t be in the Ghost Cult article. Links to info for each band are at the bottom of the post.

Photos by Wayne Edwards.

Year of the Cobra
Year of the Cobra
Savage Existence
Bewitcher
Bewitcher
Bewitcher
Extinction A.D.
Extinction A.D.
Carnivore AD
Carnivore AD
Integrity
Integrity
Integrity
Voivod
Voivod
Municipal Waste
Municipal Waste
Municipal Waste
Municipal Waste
Exodus
Exodus
Exodus
Exodus

Links.

Ghost Cult Magazine article, https://www.ghostcultmag.com/festival-review-pure-filth-festival-at-sharkeys-event-center-liverpool-new-york/

Exodus, https://exodusattack.com/site/

Municipal Waste, https://www.municipalwaste.net/

Voivod, https://www.voivod.com/

Integrity, https://www.facebook.com/INTEGRITY.HT

Extinction A.D., https://www.facebook.com/ExtinctionAD

Bewitcher, https://www.bewitcher.us/

Savage Existence, http://savageexistence.com/

Year of the Cobra, https://yearofthecobra.com/

Sharkey’s Event Center, https://sharkeysbarandgrill.com/

© Wayne Edwards

Pure Filth Festival, Sharkey’s, Liverpool, New York, June 18th 2022

Goatwhore at Higher Ground, Burlington, Vermont, June 15th 2022

Goatwhore is on tour with Gwar right now – I caught up with them in Burlington, Vermont.

Goatwhore is a New Orleans death/black/thrash metal band that has been roaming the earth for twenty-five years. I have listened to them for much of that time, but I didn’t get a chance to see them live until Psycho Las Vegas in 2019. I was completely blown away. They played their set in the House of Blues and that place absolutely melted down. Ever since then, I have been on a quest to see them again and maybe get a couple of photos.

I saw Gwar at the very first stop on their current tour, but Goatwhore wasn’t at the show because they were playing somewhere else. Damn and blast. I tracked them to the North Country and found them at Higher Ground, one of my favorite music venues in all the world. Here are a few photos from that show. Go see them on their co-headlining tour in August with Incantation – and any other time you can.

Photos by Wayne Edwards.

Links.

Goatwhore, http://www.goatwhore.net/

Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/thegoat666

Higher Ground, https://highergroundmusic.com/

© Wayne Edwards

Goatwhore at Higher Ground, Burlington, Vermont, June 15th 2022

Max & Iggor Cavalera, Warbringer, and Healing Magic at The Vogue, Indianapolis, June 6th 2022

Heavy metal giants Max & Iggor Cavalera brought their show to Broad Ripple on Monday. The feature act was neo-thrash metallers Warbringer and Healing Magic opened the show.

Healing Magic is a duo from Arizona comprised of Igor Amadeus Cavalera on guitar and vocals and Johnny Valles on drums. It is amazing, truly incredible in fact, that such a full and complete sound can be created live by only two people. Roaring psychedelic riffs and astonishing percussion filled the club and got the crowd whipped up for the evening ahead. I have seen two-man acts before, but none could hold a candle to Healing Magic.

Veteran thrashers Warbringer held the middle slot. Formed in 2004, Warbringer has an impressive catalogue of albums in their canon and a formidable roster of metal musicians who line the stage every night and deliver stunning performances. Front man John Kevill stalked the stage and the pit and the crowd, becoming one with the concert-goers and making the night one they would remember all summer. The hard-driving attack of the guitars along with the steady rhythm section and searing percussion had the house speakers swaying.

Max and Iggor Cavalera are luminaries in the heavy music world. Remembered first as stalwart members of Sepulchura, they continued to create new and compelling music without pause after their departure from that iconic band. As Cavalera Conspiracy, they released four riff-filled albums in ten years. Operating now as Max & Iggor Cavalera, they continue to answer the call from the legion of their fans.

On Monday at The Vogue they played Beneath The Remains and Arise straight through, and a couple of bonus tunes at the end. This tour is a celebration of the early days of Sepultura. Being there to hear it live again was an amazing experience. The influence and lasting impact of that band cannot be overstated. This tour will help keep the music alive.

The links below will connect you to more information on the bands and to photo galleries of Healing Magic and Warbringer for more snaps from the show. There are many dates remaining on the tour. Grab a ticket and go.

Photos by Wayne Edwards.

Links.

Max & Iggor Cavalera, https://cavaleraconspiracy.bandcamp.com/

Warbringer, https://warbringer.bandcamp.com/

Warbringer photo gallery at FFMB, https://flyingfiddlesticks.com/2022/06/11/photo-gallery-warbringer-at-the-vogue-indianapolis-june-6th-2022/

Healing Magic, https://www.facebook.com/healingmagicaz

Healing Magic photo gallery at FFMB, https://flyingfiddlesticks.com/2022/06/12/photo-gallery-healing-magic-at-the-vogue-indianapolis-june-6th-2022/

The Vogue, https://thevogue.com/calendar/

© Wayne Edwards

Max & Iggor Cavalera, Warbringer, and Healing Magic at The Vogue, Indianapolis, June 6th 2022

Photo Gallery: Healing Magic at The Vogue, Indianapolis, June 6th 2022

Healing Magic is on tour opening for Max & Iggor Cavalera and Warbringer. These photos are from their appearance in Indianapolis at The Vogue. Hit the link below for the full review and photos of the other bands.

Photos by Wayne Edwards.

Links.

Main FFMB article on the show, https://flyingfiddlesticks.com/2022/06/12/max-iggor-cavalera-warbringer-and-healing-magic-at-the-vogue-indianapolis-june-6th-2022/

Healing Magic, https://www.facebook.com/healingmagicaz

The Vogue, https://thevogue.com/calendar/

© Wayne Edwards

Photo Gallery: Healing Magic at The Vogue, Indianapolis, June 6th 2022

Photo Gallery: Warbringer at The Vogue, Indianapolis, June 6th 2022

Warbringer is touring with Max & Iggor Cavalera. These photos are from their appearance in Indianapolis at The Vogue. Hit the link below for the full review and photos of the other bands.

Photos by Wayne Edwards.

Links.

Full FFMB review, https://flyingfiddlesticks.com/2022/06/12/max-iggor-cavalera-warbringer-and-healing-magic-at-the-vogue-indianapolis-june-6th-2022/

Warbringer, https://warbringer.bandcamp.com/

The Vogue, https://thevogue.com/calendar/

© Wayne Edwards

Photo Gallery: Warbringer at The Vogue, Indianapolis, June 6th 2022