ArkarionDarkenium/Pyromesh/Death Dependent

The Rosemount Hotel

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Saturday night was shaping up to be a relentless ball of energy with the launch of Arkarion‘s debut album, Lessons in Futility, backed by Darkenium, Pyromesh and Death Dependent. And none of the bands disappointed.

First up, Darkenium. Any bass player (Tom Nguyen) who plays metal with their fingers in those fast tempos earns big points in my book and I was also very surprised by the skill and speed of guitarists Grant Burns and Tom Howell. Backed with an impressive array of blast beats and other furious double bass work from drummer Scott Lewrey, they’re an impressive live act that blends modern heavy metal with old school death metal influences very well.

Next up, Pyromesh playing what turned out to be their second last show (the final gig being on July 4 in support of Sydonia at Amplifier). It’s a shame the band is coming to an end because I rather enjoyed their music. After being together as a band for such a length of time (14 or 15 years) they’ve obviously honed their live sound to be very tight with lots of riffs and clever song arrangements. I particularly enjoyed the passionate vocal style of frontman Andy Jones.

After Pyromesh came Bunbury locals, Death Dependent. The influence from Metallica and Megadeth was immediately apparent from the first song and later in the set influences from Overkill and Pantera were also obvious. Not that that is a bad thing; it’s always interesting to see where young bands are taking older influences and producing a modern take and these guys are very, very good at it.

And finally, Arkarion. By this time the crowd was only about 100 or so people, which was rather disappointing really. But the crowd was treated to an amazing set. Vocalist Jordan Hare was on fire with an amazing and energetic display. The sound itself reminds me a little bit of Machine Head and Pantera with influences from Megadeth in the lead guitar work, but it’s very clear the band is committed to creating their own unique style from a whole range of influences from American and Scandinavian heavy metal bands. The band has undergone a lot of struggle to make this album, and the night was very obviously a complete release of all those struggles and frustrations in the music.

I love watching local heavy metal bands live. These four bands in particular are incredibly talented, writing great songs and, given the right circumstances, could become very successful on our local scene. If you love heavy metal also, go and see them next time they’re playing live somewhere and support it. Because they’re as good as any of the big name acts from overseas.