The new Mr. Roboto has been going
strong over the past few months since it’s opening in the fall of 2011. With
multiple concert events going on including album release parties, debut
performances, and local performances from a full spectrum of bands, the Roboto
remains the heart and soul of Pittsburgh music. Even the audio equipment at the
disposal of musicians is noteworthy, though there were some troubles with the
microphones on this evening.
There was a bit of waiting while Moths and the Roboto sound crew tried to
figure out what was wrong with the PA system. As time ticked by, eventually the
show got started with hindered vocals. Surprisingly Moths’ vocalist, Chris
Hull, sang loud enough to be heard over the thunderous clash of his band
mates. Always a treat to hear someone scream to this extent; though an
even tastier auditory experience was the technical expertise of the guitarists
and drummer. The fine-tuned death metal rhythms were inconceivably tight. Every
guitar sweep or drum roll was precision quality like a well-crafted diamond:
gorgeous and hardened. As steady and extensive the songs were, Moths manages to
captivate with technical musical prowess with a dash of prog.
The PA system continued to be a pain in the ass for the black metal band,
Vitandus. Hardly anybody could hear, let alone understand, the quaking growls
being barked into the microphone, but there was an improvement in sound quality
nonetheless. Wagonloads of bloodied riffs devastated anybody without
earplugs. The thickness of the sound blended a mixture of screeching old-school
thrash with sinister undertones permeating from Norwegian black metal era.
Which, taking the later into consideration, suited the young trio quite well
when they performed an instrumental Darkthrone cover as their encore.
The night continued to become more vicious as underground throat crushers,
Wrought Iron, tore through the Roboto. Blackened to a crisp, the malicious
tones of grind and hardcore trudged and screeched their way through the
audience. The lurching and leaping rhythms were consistently intense. If there
was a larger crowd that was more into this sort of gut retching style of music,
most likely body parts would be missing.
With one ripping grindcore band followed by another, Liquified Guts chugged
their way through. There is an underlying goofiness to the band that lightens
their guttural growls and meat grinder instrumentals. The kind of Primus
silliness you wouldn’t expect to hear in a grind band, but, then again, when
has a grindcore band ever been totally serious? Liquified Guts connected fairly
well with the audience this evening with jokes relating to food or “invisible
fruit.” As unfriendly as grindcore can be, there is a bright side to it all
with the chunky burps and terrorizing music.