Treasure Fest Day 2, what can I say? I was exhausted, drained, and just wanted to sleep but the prospect of seeing good bands and finding new ones kept me going. I am always hungry for great music and on this day Treasure Fest delivered more than I could ask for. I found myself sporting a grin all day. Some bands stood out that I truly enjoyed: Appalucia, My Captain, Old Flings, and 2013 Wolves. The first day of Treasure Fest set the bar pretty high, so I was excited to see how Day 2 could possibly top the first.
There were rumors of a big surprise from Appalucia. They played at the Thirsty Beaver Saloon and it couldn’t have been a more perfect venue to see them; the country dive-bar feel made it a great match. I don’t think anyone was prepared for what was to come: A punk rock variation of our favorite Appalucia songs. I was speechless. Nothing super flashy, just straight up punk rock. Corey Zeigler put away the acoustic guitar and wielded nothing but a microphone. Wyley “Buck” Boswell killed it on the electric guitar. Ian Stroupe picked up an electric bass in place of his usual stand-up bass and, of course, Chris Slezak nailed it on the drums. There were a few regular faces from past Appalucia shows and everyone was highly impressed with their performance. They were well received in this form and I hope this new style reappears in the future.
Listen to Appalucia: http://appalucia.bandcamp.com/
Appalucia on Facebook: http://appalucia.bandcamp.com/
After having my mind blown from Appalucia, I rushed down to Studio 1212 to check out Death of Kings. Due to a switch up in the schedule, I was only able to catch two songs from these guys but, from what I heard, it was a great performance. Showing influences from all of the OG metal bands they brought finger tapping guitar solos and high-pitched melodic screams reminiscent of Iron Maiden and the like. If you like old school metal, you will really enjoy these guys. I stuck around for the next band, Spewtilator, as I had heard good things about them.
Listen to Death of Kings: http://www.reverbnation.com/deathofkings
Death of Kings Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/deathofkingsmetal
As Death of Kings cleared the floor, Spewtilator set up to blow us away with non-stop heavy metal. With vocals ranging from low guttural growls to shrilly high screams, they were all over the place but they kept it between the musical ditches. Spewtilator is a great grindcore band. If you’re into that style they’re definitely worth checking out.
Listen to Spewtilator: http://reverbnation.com/spewtilator
Spewtilator on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Spewtilator
After Spewtilator I rushed back up to Lunchbox Records. I’m pretty sure that Lunchbox was one of the best venues of Treasure Fest. I saw some of the best bands there including My Captain. The bassist and vocalist may have the best in Charlotte for this style of music. With canorous vocals overlaying multiple guitar riffs it was hard to not want to sing along. I can’t wait for an album from My Captain.
Listen to My Captain: http://soundcloud.com/my-captain
My Captain on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/My-Captain/237978286221066
Back at Studio 1212 the next band, Old Flings, set up to play. Old Flings is a pop-punk band from Asheville. They pumped out jams that took me back to when I first got into good music… back when I steered away from the radio, started going to shows, and became who I am now. Bands like this make me fall in love with music all over again. With every song they played I found myself moving and smiling. These three have fun while they play, which I feel leaves the biggest mark in my memory about a great band. I will definitely be looking to see Old Flings more often.
Listen to Old Flings: http://oldflings.bandcamp.com/
Old Flings on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/oldflings
I stayed at Studio 1212 to see Naked Gods. They were ready to party. I think in the proper environment everyone in the room would have been in party mode and dancing as much as the lead singer (Studio 1212 isn’t an actual music venue with typical show lighting and a bar). He has a stage presence that resembles Mick Jagger; they definitely know how to put on a show. Passion poured from every note Naked Gods played. An all-around great band and a must see. After Naked Gods, I rushed over to to Kickstand to catch the next show.
Listen to Naked Gods: http://funnynotfunnyrecords.limitedpressing.com/bands/naked-gods
Naked Gods on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Naked-Gods/26128468875
As I arrived at Kickstand I immediately noticed that the set up was outside. This was a welcome change from the inside venues, especially on such a beautiful night. Hoverboard stood ready to start when I arrived so there was no wait to hear some great music. Hoverboard is a garage punk band from Charlotte that brings the essence of good alternative music. I have seen these guys a few times and they get better every time I see them. Nineties-style vocals pierce through the harsh guitar tone that is a pillar of grunge. The crowd enjoyed what they heard and wanted more after they had finished but by then it was time for The Emotron to perform.
Listen to Hoverboard: http://hoverboard1.bandcamp.com/
Hoverboard on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/hoverboardmusic
As The Emotron prepared his equipment—an array of samplers, synths, and sequencers—the tension rose. The Emotron wore clothing you’d think came straight from the movie Urban Cowboy: a black western shirt with white trim and black jeans. If you’ve ever seen The Emotron you know to expect the unexpected. You will never know which direction he is going to go and that’s what I love about him. On this night it seemed he would be tame. It was just he and his equipment, and a blue tarp under his feet. When he was ready to go, the crowd lit up; they knew every word to his songs. It’s a beautiful thing to watch a performer react to people reciting their lyrics. The Emotron fed off of every laugh, every word sung, and every heckle from the crowd. He’s the best kind of performer because he goes with the flow and doesn’t let anything trip him up, even when a circuit breaker gets turned off by accident and every piece of sound equipment is killed. For anyone else the show would have been halted, but he kept talking with the crowd as if nothing had happened. This was an amazing set and I think everyone who saw it would agree.
Listen to The Emotron: http://theemotron.bandcamp.com/
The Emotron on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/theemotron
After The Emotron cleared the stage, Exploding Horse took over in preparation to blast everyone’s face off. Once they started, their explosive energy spread like a wild fire through the crowd. Moshing on pavement proved to be a bad idea. Broken glass and bodies went everywhere, but no one seemed to care. Brennon Campbell held the crowd’s attention with his multitude of different style vocals, from high-pitched screams to lowest-of-low growls. He is an amazing vocalist. Exploding Horse knows how to throw it down. If you haven’t seen or heard Exploding Horse, do yourself a favor and go listen to them now.
Listen to Exploding Horse: http://www.last.fm/music/Exploding+Horse
Exploding Horse on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/explodinghorse
After Exploding horse, I made my way up to Snug Harbor for the last band of Treasure Fest, 2013 Wolves. A staple of the Charlotte music scene, they are usually the first band I mention when the topic of local music comes up. Upon arriving to Snug I found myself a spot right up front. I didn’t want to miss anything from 2013 Wolves. As they started playing, it was as if the rock gods came down and took over their bodies. I honestly can only speak for myself from this point on because I was entranced by their music. I had no clue what was going on around me. I witnessed musical genius at work right in front of my eyes. Neal MF Harper absolutely owned his part in this madness and Robert Childers may have destroyed his, literally and metaphorically. 2013 Wolves have, hands down, become the top member of the upper echelon of Charlotte’s music scene.
Listen to 2013 Wolves: http://www.myspace.com/2013wolves
2013 Wolves on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/2013wolves
Many thanks go to Josh Robbins and all the volunteers, venues, and, most importantly, the bands for making Treasure Fest II absolutely marvelous. By the end of the festival I had seen 21 bands and not a second was wasted.