Saturday, June 20, 2015

Mutoid Man at Irving Plaza

Stephen Brodsky
Vocalist/guitarist Stephen Brodsky and drummer Ben Koller have performed in so many heavy bands, including metallic hardcore bands Converge and Cave In, that distinguishing between main bands and side projects becomes a blur. In 2012, they jammed in a tiny practice space in Brooklyn, New York, and when it looked like it was turning into something, recruited bassist Nick Cageo, formerly of Bröhammer. Together they became Mutoid Man, and released a debut EP in 2013. The power trio's debut album, Bleeder, will be released on June 30, 2015.

At Irving Plaza tonight, Mutoid Man closed a brief East Coast tour opening for the Dillinger Escape Plan. Mutoid Man performed an experimental form of heavy music, investing primarily in hard guitar riffs and primal pounding rhythms, but avoiding all predictables. Brodsky alternated between death metal growls and more traditional metal vocals, and shredded extended guitar leads and riffs. Utilizing complex arrangements, particularly in the percussion, Mutoid Man performed a 45-minute metallurgy of progressive mathcore with fast and furious elements of hardcore, thrash, sludge metal, stoner metal and black metal. Sometimes it was melodic, but bursts of face-scraping distortion were common. It felt like Mutoid Man was at the beginning of forging an adventurous path in progressive metal.

After the Irving Plaza show, Mutoid Man went to Saint Vitus in Brooklyn to perform a free-admission late show. But Brodsky, please research before introducing your covers: "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" was not written by Eric Burdon; the song was written in 1964 for jazz singer Nina Simone and then covered by Burdon's band, the Animals, a year later.

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