On Dec 6th, I had the pleasure of witnessing a great night of metal at the infamous Club Congress. As I walked up the street to the Congress during my two block walk from my car, I could hear the distant unmistakable grungy rumble of Godhunter calling out to the passersby like a swan song as an escape from the chilling winter air. With eight dollar tickets and the advertised “truckloads of Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)” it had the ingredients of a great night.
First off I want to tip my hat to the sound guy. The sound was incredible as always, as Club Congress is known for its “warm” sound. The sound reminds me of listening to an old vinyl, but brought to life in front of me. I should also make a point to thank Larry and Dave from Church Of Rock Revelations for bringing this show to Tucson. They've really been bringing some good music to the Old Pueblo in the recent years.
Godhunter was the first band up, taking the stage somewhere close to nine, and man, they came out strong! I felt like I was listening to excerpts of Sleep’s Holy Mountain album. Red State/Black Crusade from their upcoming “Wolves” release was my favorite of the night. I’ve had the pleasure many a time to see Godhunter rock, but this time there was the added confidence of new rhythm guitarist Jake Brazleton. As a guitarist you can play something or you can rock something, and on Dec 6th, Jake rocked the set!
The second band up was Vanish Twin. This was my first time hearing the Tucson three piece. Vanish Twin came out the gates a little rough but shook off the show jitters by the time the guitarist’s tube amp could warm up. My first impression I would have to say they reminded me of 400 Blows meets early Melvins. I loved the overall grungy sound of these guys. The haunting chanty vocals, melodic drumming, and slow corpsegrinding bass fuzz leave you like a deer in the highlights of a heavy metal Mac truck. I am looking forward to hearing more from these guys.
Finally the much anticipated Red Fang took the stage. With a few minutes of crowd banter and level setting, Red Fang roared into Hank Is Dead from their new album “Murder the Mountains," filling Congress with metal that had been marinating in PBR for the last three hours. Humans Remain Human Remains from their self titled “Red Fang” EP was one of the standout songs for me. The slow driving bass with ringing guitars reminded me of Black Sabbath’s The Savage Hippy. Personally I have always been one to favor the sleeper tracks on an album but they also didn’t disappoint with there chug heavy tracks Wires and Prehistoric Dog.
I'm pleased that I can now scratch another band I've wanted to see off my bucket list. So in short, on December 6th at the Club Congress, Red Fang absolutely killed it….period. Tucson's metal scene gained another win. If you have been weary of seeing some of the same local acts all the time, you are truly missing out. Get out and go see a Vanish Twin or Godhunter show and you won’t be disappointed. I find that the winds of change are blowing and the “throwback” Rock n Roll and Metal movement has found a home in Tucson Arizona!
All photos courtesy of PESTILENCE PHOTOGRAPHY