It was a show that I felt was highly anticipated. I am not alone when I say how great it is to be able to get back out there to not only see my favorite bands back on stage but to actually get back to shooting those bands. Although this night was to be the first time seeing Shoot 2 Thrill, a premier AC/DC tribute band, it was a thrill to get to see a Long Island’s favorite, Live After Death – The Ultimate Iron Maiden tribute band; a band whom Ive seen several times!
Unfortunately, the night didnt start out quite as planned. When I arrived at the venue, there were about 50-75 people standing outside of Stereo Garden. Since I didnt plan on doing any drinking, I arrived about a half hour prior to Live After Death’s scheduled time to hit the stage, at 8:30p. The growing crowd was told that the sound guy was having issues but the club was going to be opening in 10-15 minutes. Finally, at 8:25p the doors opened to a crowd now of about 100 heavy metal drinking fans.
I ran into Nick, the guitarist for LAD, gave a quick hand shake and asked when they were hitting the stage to which he told me, “5 minutes”. And at 8:45p they took the stage by storm! Considering they didnt get a sound check due to “technical issues” earlier in the day, they sounded amazing! They put on a 80 minute set and never sounded better!! One thing I did notice was that the PA system was at full throttle! The mix of the musicians was great! Although at one point one of the monitors failed and one of the back up mics had gone dead. But considering the issues, the show continued in a very professional manner.
Shoot 2 Thrill hit the stage around 10:30p. The crowd was ecstatic! Tim Hoyt came out in his school boy, “Angus Young” attire and Chris Antos provided his “Bon Scott/Brian Johnson” rendition. This is what a tribute band should emulate! They sounded great! Unfortunately, there were sound issues, again!! At one point, during Riff Raff, not only did the main mic go out, it was soon discovered that the rhythm guitarist’s mic was also out. Chris had to finish the song using the bass mic! But he handled the issue professionally knowing that shit happens!! Which is true!! Im not sure how that day went down but from what I understand, the sound guy didnt show up until 6:30p! Did he not know there was a show that day? Was he called in at the last minute when the other sound guy called out?? Wasnt the PA system put through a dry run before any bands stepped foot through the door? There are many reasons why there were issues, being a former Entertainment Manager, I am fully aware that shit happens!! So lets call it what it was!!
Two stellar bands played that night and rocked the faces of all that were in attendance! Sure, the sound guy may have cost the Sound Garden an hours worth of booze, sure there may have been a couple mic/monitor issues, but did that take away from the musicianship that was put on stage!! HARDLY!! Both bands kicked ass, put their ass on the line and put out for their audience! I would be hard pressed that anyone would hold an audio issue against them and will see them the next time they hit the town. You know Ill be there!!!