In case you haven’t noticed, I tend to go into the metal shows pretty oblivious to what I will experience. I don’t really consider myself to be a metal girl, but at the Holy Grail show, I learned that I CAN learn to love metal. Apparently, I like thrash with an 80′s flavor. It became evident within the first lick of the guitar just WHY there were so many more girls in the crowd than I expected. Singer James-Paul Luna, and guitarist Eli Santana (who are two of the most down-to-earth musicians that we’ve interviewed) exude rocker appeal on-stage and LIVE the part. Not one to be confined to a mic-stand, Luna was free to roam the stage and wasn’t afraid to get in the faces of the people in the crowd.
Santana, shredded on killer metal arpeggios and was absolutely amazing in front of the camera. Personally, I love when guitarists do the back-to-back shredding, it makes for amazing photo ops. I caught at least one picture of just that, with Santana and bassist Blake Mount.
Despite the weak crowd (probably due to, ahem, lack of promotion on the venue’s part) they played their hearts out as though it were a stadium, and were so gracious to the mostly high school-aged fans that showed up (parents-in-tow) and that’s honestly what made the show so incredible. I had such a great time, in fact, that I even purchased their CD after the set and I’ve already had it on constant repeat ever since.
Co-headlining Canadian rockers Cauldron put on an equally exciting set. They carried a similar brand of 80′s thrash as that of Holy Grail. There was no lack of skinny jeaned, white high-top sneakers in this band. From the look of it, you’d think you were watching a hair band, but there was no cheese to be seen with Cauldron. The crowd loved them, and I certainly look forward to seeing them again.
Local openers Shallow Ground, hailing from Meriden, CT warmed the crowd up, and are apparently favorites over at the Webster Underground. I met with singer Keith Letourneau, just briefly in-between sets, to exchage business cards. He’s another ham for the camera as he made faces at the camera throughout their set. Unfortunately, none of them came out as good as I would have liked. But I guess that’s what you get when 99% of your shots are taken blindly, by holding the camera over your head and shooting when the moment strikes.
What I learned from this show: How to bounce flash. Sort of. I used a ghetto set-up by angling my flash and attaching an index card to the end and curling it over. I also played with shutter-speed which, coupled with the flash, gave me some rich tones in my photos. Unfortunately, I don’t get to shoot shows with a flash too often, so I think it will take me a while to really master this art.