I first heard Robert DeLong a few years ago without knowing his name, who he was, or how much I would actually come to love his music. In 2018 he patterned on a duet with K. Flay, who I am obsessed with, on a song called "Favorite Color Is Blue." So, when the opportunity to cover one of shows came up, I jumped at the chance.
The opening act was Day Tvvo. It was originally supposed to be Grabbitz, who I was really looking forward to seeing and covering, but something happened, and he was replaced with Day Tvvo. I wasn't terribly excited about the change because I had not heard of them before. They were supposed to take the stage at 8:30, but when 8:40 rolled around and the stage was still empty, I went outside for some fresh air. I honestly wasn't even going to photograph them or talk about them in my review. They were mid-song when I came back inside, and within a few seconds of hearing them, seeing them, I very quickly moved to the front of the stage to start photographing them. I didn't even think about it. It wasn't even a choice at that point. I couldn't help it. I needed to shoot them. I needed to talk about them. People needed to know about them.
When I started writing my review, I went to their website for the standard research like verifying how to spell their names, and something odd caught my attention: there were three members listed on the website, but only two members on stage this night. Where did the other fellow go? A mystery that may never be solved.
I can't even say enough about Robert DeLong. He is, by far, the most impressive man I have ever seen on stage. He is not only incredibly talented, but he was super fun.
You can read my full review here.
Last night Darwen's Theory took the stage at The Viper Room for Metal Assault Record's Waken Metal Battle for their shot at participating in the Waken Metal Festival in Germany. They, along with another band, are advancing to the next round of the battle. YES!
Darwen's Theory are winners and I am rooting for my boys. I hope you do, too.
2022 is off to a great start for me. My first show of the year was also my first stadium/arena show ever! Tool at Honda Center in Anaheim. 18,000 seats. I was so nervous. Would the equipment that has served me so well in smaller venues be sufficient in this place? Do I really need to spend thousands on a new lens? Would I even be able to get a decent shot? This was one time I was actually worried that for once, my hobbity stature would actually be detrimental to this job. I had convinced myself that I was going to blow this. Thankfully, I don't think I did blow it.
Tool did not make this job easy. It felt like every obstacle that could be put in my path, was put in my path. It began when I was first approved for my credentials. I was informed that I would be permitted to shoot for only the first song, and any attempt to take a single photograph the second the final note ended, even accidentally, would result in the expulsion of all the photographers. One song. No pressure.
The hardest obstacle was the stage itself. They start the show with a ceiling to stage curtain made up of tens of thousands of long stringy fibers that light up during the show which I had to shoot under and onto the stage. That alone would not be too difficult, except in addition the stage being very high, storage boxes were placed in front it and stood so far out from the bottom of the stage that I couldn't even touch the stage.
Every show presents new challenges and I love it. My anxiety makes me a hot mess up until the second I take my first shot, but once I start, nothing else in the world matters. There is only the band in front of me and the camera on my face. And then the music stops, and I take a breath and review the images, and I feel a sense of relief and accomplishment and there in no better feeling.
I was given a ticket so that I could review the show as a whole, not just the first song. I bought my $8 cup of arena coffee and took my seat. The two and a half hour set was breathtaking.
You can find my full review here.