No, I am not talking about that shocking film or about my mental condition (although…). I am talking about my METAL condition. I have always liked metal and its many forms, but mostly I enjoy melodic metal. Melodic metal means I can actually sing along to it which is refreshing because I do really find it challenging to try and roar – for some reason I just can’t pull that off! The only influence I can think of that led me down this path is from my brother. He is 9 years older than me and I remember seeing vinyls of Guns ‘ N ‘Roses, Metallica, Poison, Skid Row, Aerosmith and the very first Def Leppard cassette that I stole off his floor – how could anyone forget “Rocket” and “Animal”. Anyway, you know the theme here – 80’s guitar solos. Most melodic metal has some of these elements so it seems a logical progression as to why I like this genre.
Yup I love metal bands and my favourite is a little band called DARKEST HOUR. If you just found yourself going “Who?” and you enjoy the metal genre, feel ashamed.
They are a band from Washington D.C. and they formed in 1995.
I just wanted to write about them tonight because I listened to their song ‘Anti Axis’ on repeat my entire journey home – that journey is a little over one hour. I felt sorry for the man sitting next to me who clearly wanted me to turn it down by his varying sighs and side glances. Much to his disappointment and to the detriment of my ears and ever growing tinnitus condition, I did not turn it down.
I am just going to throw it out there, this is definitely one of the best cd’s that I have come across in my little existence of 32 years. Big call you may be thinking to yourself – yes well it is and I am placing it right up there with TOOL’s Ænima, The Cure’s Disintegration, Nine Inch Nails’s Broken and Metallica’s ..And Justice for All. Yes, be proud Darkest Hour you are in my top 5 and well deserved.
I don’t even know if it possible for them to produce an album better than their most recent one. I remember thinking the exact same thoughts with the Mark of the Judas and So Sedated, So Secure, Hidden Hands of a Sadist Nation and Undoing Ruin, Deliver Us, The Eternal Return and The Human Romance.
I discovered this band in the early 2000’s but it was not until July 14,2007 that I got to see them live at a little venue called Spectrum. They opened with a now favourite hit, Convalescence, with the riff on loop before blasting into it. From this moment on I was hooked. Totally hooked. I was captivated by John Henry the lead singer.
Unassuming, relatively quiet, slightly nerdy guy and wearing a crisp, white shirt , you know- probably take him home to your parents material, and then he starts to sing, I mean scream. WOW. (As an aside he is a total dreamboat, swoonworthy that makes me blush. You can go look at him here http://instagram.com/john_b_henry. Anyway I likened that event to being totally gobsmacked by their music. I waddled over to the side of the stage to look at some merch and all the band were there, just hanging and there I was just, staring. I was experiencing a Wayne and Garth moment where being in their presence triggered the same reaction that they had over Alice Cooper. Throughout the few times I have seen Darkest Hour, I have always been reduced to feeling this.
There are some defining moments in your musical adventures and this was definitely one of mine.
I have tried to see these guys as many times as possible because they absolutely shred and I have no idea why they are not ridiculously popular. They have been to Australia a few times and absolutely killed it every time. Maybe they are so modest that they are just not up there with some of the more popular bands in this genre. It really has me stumped as to why they aren’t just blowing up.
You can also imagine my delight and surprise when I heard ‘Demons’ being played during an episode of True Blood in Fangtasia. This scene was already amazing due to Sookie meeting Eric Northman where he had lovely blonde hair but then sprinkle it with this tune and it made it so much better.
You can hear them at 2:41…for a little while.This little tune also appears on guitar hero.
If you aren’t already realising just how cool this band is, meet Mike Schleibaum. Hello flying V guitars and amazing guitar solos that you listen to over and over and over and over and over again.
Lead guitarists are usually a focal point for most bands and Mike will not disappoint you.
I have done my time battling the elements at gigs. I vowed to myself that no longer will I stand 8 hours lining up, waiting, busting to pee,nearly on the verge of severe dehydration and delirium for Trent Reznor or Maynard Keenan ever again – been there done that. I don’t do so well at concerts these days, I prefer a designated seat and access to a toilet. I also enjoy not being cut in half by a steel barricade, breathing in smoke and body odours and being rubbed against.
The last time I saw Darkest Hour in Sydney was in the smallest venue ever and the roof collapsed. It was right then and there that I knew I had to revisit all of the above. It is hard being a more timid girl at a metal gig but I found a good position next to the speaker and battled on because they are worth it.
You have my melodic metal heart DH XXX
Do yourself a favour and listen to this