words by BBG, photos by Greg Cristman
I don't know where you were on Friday night, but if it wasn't at the sold-out Boris and Torche show at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, I feel bad for you....If there is a US band that the diametric opposite of humorless/boring on stage, it's the touring-as-a-four-piece (do I smell a trend?) Torche. The Florida band supported Boris and Russian Circles at Music Hall of Williamsburg on Friday (8/6) as part of the ongoing Blackened Music series - one of three killer metal shows going on that night: Cynic, Intronaut, and Dysrhythmia played Bowery Ballroom, and a later afterparty of Keelhaul/My America shindig at Acheron was a similary good time. The MHOW show doubled as a coming out party for the oft-delayed Boris/Torche split, out now on the venerable Hydra Head Recordings.
Torche's set was great. Melodic doom? If I had to guess, I'd say Torche might be the heaviest band playing in standard tuning. And if that's not standard tuning [ED: it definitely isn't], these guys play a lot of happy chords, but can still run a nasty bass line underneath for a giant cosmic explosion at the end. I'm not sure if a lot of bands not Boris ever used Boris' equipment, but Torche was allowed and it sounded great. My one complaint was the music could stand on its own without singing, maybe even profit from less.
Boris opened with "Farewell." The set was up and down in terms of slow beautiful Boris songs to fast crazy-as-hell Boris songs. I think sometimes the audience wanted more of the latter, but "Rainbow" with hired gun Michio Kurihara's guitar shredding and Wata's "16:47:52" were highlights for me. I was standing near Wata because I'm in love with her. She's so serious! I've seen Boris plenty of times and for some reason I always describe the sets as a lot of fun and Boris is not like U.S. metal bands-the members actually have a lot of fun. I don't know why I say these things because Wata, Michio and Takeshi are expressionless. Japanese metal stoicism?...
...When I see Boris play, I'm embarrassed for the entire U.S. metal scene. -[NY Press]
More pictures from MHOW below...