This is a photo by Jun Tiangja of rice terraces in the Philippines. It has nothing to do with anything else in this post. I just think it’s beautiful.
I forewarned you that there would be a drop in NCS content for about one week beginning yesterday because I planned to confer, converse, and otherwise hob-nob with my brother wizards here in the Emerald City. And if you’re now laughing at the notion of yours truly and my fellow NCS scribes being characterized as wizards, you’re welcome.
All of us have indeed congregated in Seattle, with BadWolf arriving yesterday afternoon and TheMadIsraeli, Andy Synn, and DGR swooping in at various times on Thursday. And though I expected our collective blog time would dwindle drastically, I didn’t foresee that we wouldn’t post a goddamn thing yesterday, not even a notice saying we wouldn’t be posting a goddamned thing yesterday.
We’ve fallen down on the job because I think we’ve been enjoying each other’s company. I say “I think” because I’m not a mind-reader and am mainly speaking for myself, and speaking for myself, I am happy to learn that people who seemed like cool dudes over the internet have turned out to be cool dudes in person, too.
In fact I’d go so far as to say that they are even nicer than I expected. I don’t know for sure what they think of me, but I assume it’s an attitude of reverence and awe, since this is the usual reaction of people who I encounter.
Last night the five of us saw Wintersun, Fleshgod Apocalypse, and Arsis at a Seattle venue named Studio Seven. We were doing other things before the show and didn’t manage to get there in time to see the opening band, Starkill. In fact Arsis launched their first song about 2 minutes after we walked through the doors.
Andy Synn took some video and is writing a show review, so I’ll be brief with my own thoughts.
I saw Arsis not long ago with Krisiun at this same venue, and I thought they were even better this time around. Utterly vicious, and James Malone’s vocals — highly acidic and yet quite intelligible — were scathing. My only complaint was that the set flew by way too fast — five songs in 30 minutes or less, and they were done.
The Fleshgod Apocalypse set was an exercise in complete sensory overload — sights as well as sounds. Francesco Ferrini is now playing his keyboards on what looks like an upright piano, and the band are accompanied for this tour by operatic soprano Veronica Bordacchini, whose vocal extravagance is a worthy addition to the band’s bombastic live performance.
I thought their show was electrifying, and they have developed a huge following in Seattle (and probably the U.S. as a whole) who really got into what they were doing, too. They’ve got about a dozen shows left on this tour, and if you’ve never seen them, you really, really should. They look and sound like no one else.
I enjoyed what I heard of the Wintersun set, but missed a big section of it while talking outside the venue with FA’s bass player Paolo Rossi. Surprisingly, he recognized me from previous encounters (as did two other FA members who I saw on the stairway to Studio Seven’s bar). Like everyone in this band I’ve met, he’s a super-nice person and was so much fun to talk with about this current tour and FA’s plans for the future.
Well, I’ll bring this little vignette to a close. Time to play tour guide and for the rest of the dudes to play tourists. Pike Place Market, here we come.