Last Thursday night was spent with local bands. Well some local, and some fairly local due to Craigslist. The punk-inspired venue was Hole in the Wall, located very nicely in the heart of the UT Austin downtown area. I passed college students walking down the sidewalk to the bar; the outside life filled with passing cars and students with backpacks and books in hand did not exactly correlate with the darkly-lit, and rock n roll feel of the bar itself. Of course, the quirky hipster bartenders made me jump back into reality and remember what decade I was in. But once I stepped foot in the graffiti-covered bathroom I was transported back to 1976 and thought I would step out to a mob of mohawk-banging heads slam dancing to The Sex Pistols. Unfortunately, when I walked out I was in present-day Austin, but fortunately I was there to see a great local band: Madmartigan.
The first band was called Death Row Bodeen from Kilgore, TX. Already from their sound checking verbal pick of “balls, testies, testies, testing, balls, balls, balls,” I knew I was in for a ride. The start of their set was accompanied by metal vibes and some questionable comments from the lead singer. The band also mixed in some random screamo moments. The music was forgettable, but the snide side comments between band mates made for an interesting hour. The last band was a Craiglist band consisting of members coming from all over the U.S. They call themselves Another De Sade. With some influence in the metal genre as well, their sound was mostly driven from the emo-rock scene. The vocals sounded a bit like Coheed and Cambria, but their sound was more Incubus-like. Still not my favorite of the night but they were a step up from the first band, unnecessary mic talk still going strong, though.
Now to the band of the night. Madmartigan is made up of 4 young guys from Austin, TX. They describe their sound as emo-rock, with an influence from Taking Back Sunday. As prominent as that sound is in their music, they add their own unique sound to the emo scene. Their music is comprised of a dynamic instrumental base and Eric plants his vocals very nicely on top of it. You can’t even follow along to the drummer’s movements because he is all over the place, very strategically, however. The guitar riffs are clever and catchy. My favorite song, Paralleling Lines, features an “epic” (their words, not mine, although I don’t disagree) instrumental solo. The song takes the listener through a roller coaster of emotions. It is fast paced, and then it slows down to the instrumental part that takes you into a sort of trance of peacefulness, and then it catches you again at the bridge where, for some reason, makes me always want to burst into tears. I promise my opinion is not biased, since I happen to be dating said drummer. This band is really one to watch in the Austin scene. And I mean that literally, go out and see them play! For show dates, songs, and videos to watch check out their Facebook.
Catch their next show at Beerland in Austin, TX on December 2, 2015.