Metal Done Right – Baroness at the Club at Water Street

photos by Jacob Silco

Savannah, Georgia’s Baroness brought their progressive “stoner” metal grooves to Rochester’s Club at Water Street Wednesday August 7th. Touring behind their newest album, Yellow and Green, the group was joined by label mates Royal Thunder. Royal Thunder is a three-piece progressive rock band from Atlanta. Their sound is a mix of the old and the new; imagine a mix of The Cult and Evanescence with a more hypnotic progressiveness. Featuring the vocals and impressive bass skills of  MLny Parsonz, the trio impressed the small crowd that had made it in early during their 40 minute set.

Baroness, by all accounts, appear to be on the cusp of success. While they still perform their own soundchecks and headline smaller venues, they are able to pull a close to capacity crowd for a decent ticket price  on a Wednesday despite the distance from their far away southern roots. Many attendees were adorned in black Baroness shirts and colorful tattoos and the beer was flowing at full blast as go-time approached.

The glowing trademark on the band’s Bad Cat amplifier head beckoned the black fashioned masses closer. Blue oyster cult filled the pre-show music as the band took the stage to the muted sounds of “Highway Star”. The set started acoustically unassuming before a barrage of power chords enlightened the onlookers into a sea of metal signs.

The band’s sound is a mix of unassuming melodic mellowness with brutal reminders gleefully tossed eloquently into the mix. Picture Mastodon meets early Clutch with a twist of classic rock ground in and the potential to surpass the sum of their influences.  The crowd chatted little, transfixed by the sonic spectacle on stage. Many songs had epic qualities, building, subsiding, peaking, running the gambit of emotions in one composition.

The show mostly showcased the band’s newest effort, but had enough older tracks to keep things interesting. Unlike most harder shows, the audience seemed content to stand and watch for most of the show, but in true metal fashion a decent mosh pit broke out during the encore. Pull your Sabbath tees out of the basement and go check out some Baroness!

photos by Jacob Solis