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3 Bands in One Night Tear it Up at Sub T in Chicago on October 9th, 2016 By; Coren E. McLeod

3 Bands in One Night Tear it Up at Sub T in Chicago On October 9th, 2016

Written By:  Coren E. McLeod

Photos By:  Coren E. McLeod

                This past year has been a spectacular roller coaster ride of true inspiration for me especially within the Chicago local music scene.  I always tend to seek out music that is out of the ordinary, has some sort of substance to it and is true to form.  I still pinch myself on the daily and ask myself, “Seriously, am I truly living this life?  Is this my life?”  And I always come to the same conclusion:  YES….  Yes.  This is my life.

            On Sunday, October 9th, 2016 at Subterranean in Chicago, a tornado of magnificent herds of home-grown bands gathered together for an event that was genuinely mesmerizing.  Werewolves at Hour 30 (WAH30), BlackGlass and 20 Watt Tombstone brought together their unique sounds to bring the house down to an audience that wanted to overindulge in greatness. 

            Well, the show did have some drama that would lead to some unwanted stress. 20 Watt Tombstone just finished up a tour and was frantically driving to get to the Chicago show.  Well, all is fair in love and metal especially when your diesel truck decides to break down in Iowa.  According to 20 Watt Tombstone’s lead singer, Tom Jordan, one must keep their cool during a situation like that.

Tom Jordan of 20 Watt Tombstone

            Here is what Tom had to say, “Well...one thing I've learned over the years is to try not to freak out over breakdowns. Is everyone safe and alive? No one’s hurt? That's the most important thing. Our vacuum pump went and through our fans and friends asking people they knew to help, we were able to have a total stranger come help us get back on the road. Blew us away! I try not to get too far ahead of myself by thinking too far past the present breakdown. Prioritize, fix van was first and then shows... It doesn't do any good to think past the present bad thing. Till you fix those issues, you can't plan on anything. Worst case scenario we would have cancelled Chicago and had the van towed to a garage and possibly went home. Luckily through, the kindness of strangers we made it to Chicago and had a blast!”

            The show at Sub T was to start promptly at 8 pm.  And with the lingering thought of 20 Watt Tombstone not being able to make it, the members of WAH30 and BlackGlass were trying to remain chill during this uncomfortable situation.  WAH30’s guitar player Anthony Defillippis was concerned for the band, “I was just hoping they were okay.”
            Lead singer and also guitar player for WAH30, James Marshall Duich, made certain that there would be a game plan just in the worse was to happen.  James said, “We probably would have extended our sets. I know Silas (BlackGlass) can go on for days, and the boys will go until their arms fall off.”

Silas Marshall of BlackGlass

            Well, thankfully, Tom and his band mate, the phenomenal drummer Mitch, finally made it to Sub T with a huge smile reaching across both of their faces.  And the spectacular show was about to emerge from the ashes.

            The first band to conquer the stage was Chicago’s own BlackGlass.  Can I just say right off the bat this band reminded me of The Black Keys and Cage the Elephant.  I was floored by the lead singer’s stage presence.  Silas Mishler is a madman on stage.  Seriously, this guy does not hold his passion back while singing and playing his guitar while laying on stage. 

            When I asked Silas about what song he likes to play, he thought that was hard to choose.  Silas said, “Oh man- that's tough. It's like picking one of your kids. I really liked bitter rind the last one. The end is a release and feels authentic. I'm always moved by it. It's simply just ohs and music- but I feel like it’s the most connected we all feel as a band. I remember recording it and at the end we all were screaming the final OH’s.  It always feels too short.  But that's why I never get sick of playing it.”

The bass player, Dan Jarvis, has a cool, chill vibe about himself that lingers behind his cascading waves of hair.  And I am all about chicks playing the drums since I happen to play myself.  Sarah Neczwid dishes out the beats like it’s no ones’ business.  Her intensity secures her hunger to rock out with the boys. 

I asked Silas what it is like to play with his band, BlackGlass and he points out, “Playing with BlackGlass is something that is so similar to what I do in other bands on the surface- but really when it gets down to it - it's really different than anything I've ever tried. There is so much fluid in the way we play.”

Now, with 20 Watt Tombstone making their remarkable debut at Sub T, a crowd was forming.  Here is a little back ground information:  I first saw 20 Watt Tombstone back in April, 2016 when they opened for the wonderful band Royal Bliss.  I was literally blown away with the simple yet gritty sounds Tom Jordan and Mitch Du’Quan Ostrowski were generating on that spring weather Saturday night. 

One factor about 20 Watt that amazes me is there are only 2 dudes in the band.  Yes…  Only 2!  Yet their music is heavy, bluesy and all in your face round house kick!  I know the guys from WAH30 and BlackGlass wanted to see this astonishment in action.  And when 20 Watt started to play that Sunday night, all mouths dropped to the floor. 

The song that I love from these guys is what is currently being circulated with a very funny video:  “Your Man’s a Jerk.”  Tom’s unflinching, southern voice is paired very with the true to life lyrics along with a hypnotic guitar riff.  Mitch’s timing and meticulous drumming is a perfect match with Tom.  I just kept hearing people in the crowd saying, “This is the t-ts…”  (More or less…  LOL…)

Now, onto the closing act of the evening.  WAH30 was so ready to bring the 3 story building down to its demise.  One thing I love about WAH30 is each member brings along their own variety of energy to the stage.  Andrew Mishler (bass player and yes his brother is Silas) always floors me with his captivating moves while playing his bass so hard his glasses serioulsy fell off his face.  No joke Anthony Defilippis (guitar) has this cool 1970’s vibe that lingers in the stage lights.  Art Wito (Drums) brings on a sort of professionalism while playing yet still makes his performance fun and memorable.  And then there is James Marshall Duich (lead vocal and guitar).  His charismatic voice and alarming guitar skills makes him the perfect front man for WAH30.  These guys just all blend together yet has their own identities within.

James Marshall Duich of WAH30

That night, WAH30 was treating the audience to new songs.  The crowd of local Chicago fans and myself were grooving to the magical delights of the new sounds.  One could tell WAH30 was feeding off the energy in the room.  (Hell, they are Werewolves…)  And it showed in the gusto of the entire performance.  Bravo guys!!!

Anthony Defillpis of WAH30

Andrew Mishler of WAH30

So, I would have to say:  this was truly a remarkable bill of 3 amazing bands that just meshed very well with one another.  According to James of WAH30, “It was a great bill. Everyone fed off each other’s energy.”
I could not have said it better myself.  Thank you so much to BlackGlass, 20 Watt Tombstone and WAH30.  You made a Sunday night seem like a Friday night….  And I applaud you for that!!!  #Cheers

- More at UnRatedMagazine.com

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