with Velvet Voodoo Dolls, Sugar Plum Dandy, Home, Skunkjuice, The Mighty Sturgeon, Camerons Way, Drawback, Slowpoke, Lachrymator at The Vertex
by Scott Hefflon
photo by Trevor Whitaker
O.K., with all hype aside, these guys deserve to be headlining in this best of the best show. Theoretically, this slot is reserved for the Best Band in Western Massachusetts. The slot was filled by Doom Nation, and I don’t hear any complaints. The crowd’s response (it could be called a riot or a pit, depending on how you look at it) was immediate, intense, and just shy of fanatic. If you weren’t whole heartily, and whole bodily, into being on the “dance floor,” you best run for cover!
The old school ranting of Mike Muir would be an easy comparison, but there it is. The band was unbelievably heavy and seemed to feed off the crowd as much as the crowd fed off them. Doom Nation used to be Doom Patrol, but because of the comic, they had to change the name. Now they’re TM as Doom Nation, they’ve got a great looking, and great sounding tape, Fruit of the Doom, and they’re playing live, very live again.
It was a really touching moment when “The Best” spoke of a scene that’s finally found itself, and finally found it’s support. They were “up there” because of the crowd “down there” and they knew it. They broke that boundary by an open invitation to the stage. Members from other bands (Notice: Not called the competition) responded and the stage was a madhouse for the rest of the show. People leap-frogged, jumped around, and stage dove to make room for someone else. The singer himself had to clear off the stage and was passed around the room, never missing a beat, never faltering a note. The boy has a set of lungs that could move a bus! The band continuously blasted a wall of sound, well crafted and intricate without ever losing momentum. Both their music and their lyric (when you finally get the tape and read the linear notes) are a level deeper than most regional bands can pull off. This is a band to get scooped up and showcased to the rest of the country. They’re definitely on par with Sam Black Church, Big Catholic Guilt, and Stomp Box. Catch them while you still can!