Thursday, August 14, 2003 @ 3:10 PM
The Buzzhorn Live at The Rock
- advertisement -
REVIEW BY: Klein
2003 has not been a good year for Milwaukee music, as it saw the close of Globe, a long-standing institution of Milwaukee rock. Fortunately, a bar called Rock Shop opened on the Southwest side of the city, and based on the opening, it should be a keeper. Then again, any bar that plays Mother Love Bone songs when a band isn't onstage would be ok with me. Since it was the grand opening, it was only fitting that a major-label local band opened the club. Who else but The Buzzhorn? (Buy their album, Disconnected. It will kick your ass.)
I got there around 9:45, before the first band, Sketchy. They were plagued by PA problems (the singer's voice was almost inaudible at times), but the music was a good metal-core creation.
Next up was Head On (Columbia), a Chicago band. They played some decent hard rock, but not very memorable.
Finally, around 1:00 AM, Milwaukee's own major label act, The Buzzhorn, took the stage. Don't be fooled by their name, they are not another "The" band. Their sound is influenced by Alice in Chains, Soundgarden and Tool, but still separates itself from clones of the aforementioned bands. Both the lyrics and music are strong, but unfortunately, that could mean death for a band in today's music business.
The set started off with "Heavy 100," taken from their independent self-titled release. It's a favorite of the hometown fans, and the crowd immediately got into it. They then went into "Disconnected," the title track from their major label debut. Bassist Todd Joseph broke a string "for the first time in seven years," but quickly recovered.
The venue's poor equipment showed itself again during "Out of My Hands," prompting singer Ryan Mueller to extend the mic into the crowd and have us sing the chorus. The outage only lasted about 30 seconds, and the band continued flawlessly.
Much of the set was drawn from Disconnected, but they worked in two older songs ("Heavy 100" and "Down Below"). They also gave fans a preview of hopefully a new album with "Better Off," "Far Away," "Gratitude" and a song tentatively (thank god) titled "Ass Cracker." The new songs seem to indicate that these guys haven't gotten lazy despite the major label contract. Not surprising, the set closed with "Ordinary," their first single.
Set list (all songs from Atlantic release Disconnected unless noted):
1. Heavy 100 (from 2000's self titled album)
4. Out of My Hands
5. Ass Cracker (unreleased)
6. To Live Again
7. Waste of a Man
9. Down Below (from 1998's Complete Package of Action-Packed Tragedies)
10. Better Off (unreleased)
11. Far Away (unreleased)
12. Gratitude (unreleased)
"I'll Sleep When I'm Dead" (from self-titled) and "Carry Me Home" were on the original set list, but cut out due to time constraints.
If you want to see The Buzzhorn, here are some upcoming dates:
15 Aug: Flint, MI at the Machine Shop with SPONGE
29 Aug: Milwaukee, WI. Harley Davidson 100th Birthday Party, North Ave. and Farwell Ave.
30 Aug: Milwaukee, WI. Summerfest grounds (stage TBA)
September: Boston, MA: NEMO Music Showcase (details TBA)
Another Boston-area show should happen that weekend as well, followed by a New York show.