Fullerton, Cali. is a great place to be if you want to check out an awesome metal concert. It’s full of rich history and it has a bunch of great rock ‘n’ roll bars/venues that can rival those in West Hollywood. One particular site that provides first-rate rock shows is the Slidebar Rock-N-Roll Kitchen. On January 30th, I went to the bar to check out another OC group that is sure to become the next Hatebreed or Trivium; Beneath the Buried. A group that I have followed very closely for a couple years, Beneath the Buried, is by far one of the best metal groups I have heard and seen. At the Slidebar, the band got the opportunity to show what they are made of by opening for alternative metal giants, Eyes Set to Kill. I have to say, this was one of the best local shows I have ever attended.
Before Beneath graced us with their presence, I got to witness a band that I never heard before, but I was curious. That band is known as The ReAktion. Coming all the way from Santiago, Chile, ReAktion is a three-piece act that electrified the crowd with their own brand of rock ‘n’ roll music. They combined the styles of electronica with the riffs of heavy metal, which I will admit is an odd combination. I am sure it has been done before, but this is really the first time I actually enjoyed how it was done. Led by guitarist/vocalist Simon Rojas, the group got the event off on the right foot. Armed with heavy licks and danceable beats, ReAktion provided us with stellar tunes that send positive messages about what’s happening in the world today. My favorites were “Ten Steps to Success,” and “The Lie That You Believe.” Not only can he sing and scream, he can play solid riffs on the axe. Outstanding bass riffs were played by Garrett Wolf and killer drumming by Felipe Alvarez, who also was in charge of the electronica on his computer. According to Rojas, there were more members, but they had to leave for personal reasons, leaving him to being the sole original member performing. Honestly, I like this group as a 3 piece, as it reminds me of Rush meets Skrillex. This was a great band to start the night and I will be watching to see where they go from here.
Following At The Helm (a group I, unfortunately, did not watch but sure did an excellent job), Beneath the Buried walked onto stage ready to slay the crowd. Once they got started with “Eulogy,” the entire audience just went apeshit just as “Riot” began to play. It is always an absolute spectacle watching frontman Kevin Beatty bellow to the fans. Whenever he roars out the vocals, it’s like witnessing a Norse god being worshipped by his Viking subjects for his thunderous voice. Beatty's vocals rival the likes of Phil Anselmo of Pantera and Randy Blythe of Lamb of God. The crowd joined in the fun when the band performed their classic “High Speed, Low Drag.” The loyalty of their fans is astounding, which is reminiscent to Saints in Rehab’s loyal followers. The rhythm of the riffs was stupendous; played brilliantly by rhythm guitarist Danny Taylor, bassist Brian Cabral, and drummer Josh Covarrubias. The best part was during the last song “Master Piece,” lead guitarist Ian Molina shredded a monster solo that gave me goose bumps. Though playing in a smaller venue to a smaller crowd, I would have to say this was their best show to date. Always putting on a sick performance, I can see Beneath the Buried being one of the headliners at Carolina Rebellion or Fort Rock someday.
After Beneath the Buried put on a spectacular concert, Eyes Set to Kill showed everyone that women can bring the heavy metal thunder just as well as men. Led by the Rodriguez sisters (bassist Anissa Rodriguez and lead vocalist/guitarist Alexia Rodriguez), the band brought the house to its feet with the opener “Surface.” The ferocity the girls brought to the stage was incredible. Anissa Rodriguez rocks the bass like no other and Alexia Rodriguez's voice soars to exceptional heights. It’s funny because when I interviewed them, Alexia told me that she a shy person, contrary to what I saw on stage. When she started belting out the lyrics to “Broken Frames,” the crowd just went crazy. Not to mention that her guitar playing is terrific. Drummer Caleb Clifton was out of this world with his mesmerizing technique. We were treated to a brand new song that will be featured on the upcoming album. The song was called “Break” and I was impressed with it. If the still untitled record sounds anything like this song, then I will be picking it up as soon as it comes out. Ending the night with their classic “Infected,” Eyes Set of Kill closed it out with a bang.
It was definitely a great night for heavy metal in Fullerton. All of these bands put on an excellent show. Out of all these groups, I would have to say Beneath the Buried brought out the most energy with the audience. Eyes Set to Kill certainly brought a lot of excitement and the fans were so happy to see this band play again. The ReAktion was one of the most entertaining groups of the night, bringing together heavy metal with dance music. The frontmen and women had voices that could carry over in Madison Square Garden if given the chance. I have to give a special shout-out to Beneath the Buried leader Kevin Beatty, who has shown why he and his gang is the future of this genre. All in all, I enjoyed myself at this show and I cannot wait to see what happens with these groups in the years to come. To these bands that conquered Fullerton, I salute you. Horns up!!!