Hooray, it’s finally May. I know many of you have been champing at the bit for April to be over and for us to inch closer to summer, so it’s nice to be post-Beltane and headed towards some of the most enjoyable weather of the year. I am still smarting from Brienne of Tarth getting done dirty and the biggest tragedy in Game of Thrones history — Ghost not getting a good boy-goodbye scratch behind his remaining cute little dire wolf ear this past weekend. Nonetheless, I will attempt to retain civility and get down to our order of business here.
Whenever I hear the phrase “Brand X” I can’t help but think of Jack Nicholson’s 1989 Joker hijacking the Gotham Action News report on the deaths of models Candy Walker and Amanda Keeler to make a commercial for his Smylex poison. The premise was his products make you smile more than Brand X, even though you laugh yourself to death. We can think of a lot healthier ways to get a grin around here in the good year of 2019, one of which would be seeing a superior Brand X in concert — one which has been around since the late 1970s. That’s right, John Goodsall and jazz fusion giants Brand X will be making a special appearance this month at our own BSP Kingston this Friday, May 10.
Formed in London in 1975 (and formerly counting Phil Collins among their ranks), Brand X is a foundational band for a lot of music nerds who have influenced a lot of other renowned noodly-type bands from Phish to Dream Theatre. The special seated show is $35 in advance and $45 day of show if any tickets remain. This is certain to be an amazing night of mind-blowingly intricate musical textures and tight musicianship the likes of which is rarely matched. That is to say, people, we are talking serious chops. Some of this band’s arrangements will positively melt your mind and take you into uncharted lands of music-induced rapture. Who says old guys can’t still compete? Don’t miss out on this if you are a prog fan. This is as real as it gets.
On the heavier front, a very interesting collection of metallic subgenres is hitting The Chance in Poughkeepsie this Sunday, May 12. Bay Area thrash metal (that is to say, the purest kind of metal) legends Death Angel bring decades of undeniable metallic speed and fortitude to the stage, along with stoner buzz band Mothership and metalcore titans All Out War for a night that will make anyone’s eyeballs turn to jelly. Death Angel are currently supporting 2019’s Humanicide, their most recent angry wolf album art thrashterpiece and the third in a row to have a consistent band lineup. That is harder in metal these days than it sounds as even moderately popular bands have to be pretty die-hard to afford to keep things afloat in the age of streaming and idolizing just the biggest pop stars like Ariana Grande while forgetting about rock ’n’ roll. Humanicide is out on May 31 and the band’s sure to be in fired-up form. Jason Suecof once again produced and the stuff sounds huge and menacing while retaining some of the Filipino fury we know and love.
‘It basically sounds like someone throwing up’
I would be remiss if I did not plug one of the most important leftist metal albums of the year, Neckbeard Deathcamp’s So Much for the Tolerant Left. Prosthetic Records is putting out this platter of glory designed to beat alt-right trolls at their own edgelord game by ridiculing their stupidity into dust. The album art has a glorious image of Richard Spencer getting a wedgie and the band’s gotten even more unlistenable for most people, while upping the ugly riffs and cavernous vocals paired with freaky dystopian samples. Just trust me and pre-order it online. The record drops on May 24 and is sure to make your local fascist apologist cry. Any of the prog fans who may have been interested in what I was saying about Brand X above are gonna want to steer clear of this one. It basically sounds like someone throwing up amidst comedic song titles over the ugliest guitar sounds you have ever heard. I am in love.
Before I go this week I want to tell you of a late afternoon into early evening event my LGBTQ readers will be keen on. There is a Hudson Valley Pride kick off tea dance on Sunday, May 12 at The Forsyth B&B, 85 Abeel St. Hosted by the wonderful folks of the Hudson Valley LGBTQ Center, there will be a cash bar and DJ Cherry Pop is performing. In celebration of the Hudson Valley Pride 2019 Guide there will be drink specials, barbecue, dancing and drag. Expect fun antics and good vibes and a perfect way to spend the Lord’s day, if you aren’t going to the thrash metal show I was talking about a few paragraphs ago. What can I say? I have wide interests. Amen.