When I look back to heavy music in the late 90s, there was a landscape change and bands like KORN, DEFTONES, and RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE opened doors for bands like SYSTEM OF A DOWN and LINKIN PARK. There were also smaller known bands like COAL CHAMBER and SNOT (RIP LYNN STRAIT) that had a smaller level of success but there was a band that toured with those bands, as well as CLUTCH and LIMP BIZKIT that all of these bands admired. A band that others didn't like playing after due to the amazing stage presence and energy this band possessed. That band is SEVENDUST who are one of the most lethal bands on stage.
A couple years later I had the opportunity to do some marketing on the 2nd release, Home. I even had a meeting with then manager Jay Jay French who told all of the old TWISTED SISTER stories but that's another story to itself. And when their 3rd album came out, Animosity, Sevendust finally hit their stride. There were some changes behind the scenes, working with a new producer, and the band released their most definitive album in my opinion. They were able to capture the melodies, the groove, the thrash, and all of those idiosyncratic ideas that made them who they are.
And here we are 21 years later as they are on tour playing the album top to bottom. Getting to hear Live Again and Beautiful are pure treats as is the lead single, Praise. And while the insanity on stage is not as youthful, the power of this band live is still unstoppable. The flailing arms of drummer extraordinaire, MORGAN ROSE, the vocal delivery of LAJON WITHERSPOON, the bottom end from VINCE HORNSBY, and the twin guitars of CLINT LOWERY and JOHN CONNOLLY cannot be stopped. This album has a special place in my musical journey. I have fond memories of seeing them numerous times in Los Angeles before they broke out and every time they rolled through town, every band would be there in awe of this band. Whether people realize it or not, Sevendust are an inspiration to their peers.
Also on the lineup tonight was TETRARCH and DEAD POET SOCIETY. The sold-out Ace of Spades in Sacramento was already near capacity when DPS finished their quick 30-minute set. And for their first time in Sacramento, the 4-piece Tetrarch showed why their success continues to build. The band is tight, focused on stage, they have a light show, they have on stage banter that is aimed to get the crowd into the show and aware of the band, and they are proving themselves to themselves that they belong in the game. The crowd easily follows along with the nu-metal style phrasings and hooky choruses. Look for this band to grow into a headliner in the next 5 years.