It’s not everyday you get to witness NOLA royalty. New Orleans sludge masters EyeHateGod recently unleashed their greatness on a crowd of fans at The Hideaway in Johnson City, Tennessee. The band is touring in support of their 2014 self titled release. The tour entitled ‘The Road to Psychotic Disorder is Not Elsewhere Classified’ also includes direct support from Philly based band Fight Amp. Also on this particular date is East Tennessee’s premiere doomsters Navajo Witch.
Navajo Witch recently released their full length album ‘Ghost Sickness’ which is a thundering heavy release that is the definition of doom. The three piece took to the stage and dominated every second of their time there. Guitarist Allen Keith plays some flawless riffs and all the while makes it look so easy. His talents on the axe are always a major asset to the band. Bassist Dylan Rutherford and drummer Ross Grindstaff alternate on vocals. The two have a different yet comparable sound that really brings everything together and makes for a really organic sound. The band released a video for the track “Rites of Divination” a while back and while the video is great seeing, this song performed in the flesh is undeniably breathtaking. Over 6 minutes of non-stop doom, with this encore-like instrumental ending that deserves a standing ovation. These guys are putting Johnson City, Tennessee on the map.
Another three piece would be up next. Fight Amp call Philadelphia home. Their sound really can’t be classified or pigeon holed. Some say sludge punk or noise rock, but the best way to describe it is undefinable awesome. Drummer Dan Smith is one of the best drummers I have seen perform in years. Not only is he insanely talented at slaying the drums but he also sings on a few tracks as well. Singer and bassist Jon DeHart is the glue that really holds their sound together. His vocals perfectly fit the bands sound. The tone and way he sings really helps the band break the mold and allows them to stand out from other bands. Jon’s vocals are somewhere between melodic and screaming, and it’s that happy medium that makes it work so well. The track “Ex Everything” from the bands album ‘Constantly Off‘ is a prime example of how Fight Amp have created their own unique sound. These guys along with Eye Hate God is a perfect touring pair. When you see Fight Amp live its more than just seeing and hearing, its an experience.
EyeHateGod is one of the most iconic bands to ever make it out of the bayou. I like to refer to them as Louisiana’s most cherished commodity. The band is comprised of some of the most talented musicians to pick up an instrument. You can’t think of EyeHateGod without the voice of the band Mike IX Williams. The aggression that spews from him is overwhelmingly captivating. The band always exceeds expectations both on and off the stage. Rather than spending time backstage the whole band was out watching the opening bands, talking to fans, and just interacting with anyone and everyone. Guitarist Jimmy Bower and bassist Gary Mader are two of the nicest guys you will ever meet. Those two and guitarist Brian Patton are the best trio of shredders in the business. The crowd was pumped from the very moment the band hit the stage but as they started the song “New Orleans is the New Vietnam” the whole place went ape shit. The band not only kicks ass on stage but you can tell by the look on their faces they enjoy it. The band has formed an amazing chemistry that can be heard in their music. Jimmy and Mike have been together in the band for 28 years since the bands formation around 1988. Almost 30 years together and their music is just as strong today as it was on day 1. Not many band can remain relevant that long. As the bands set started to wind down the slew of fans didn’t grow tired at all. As Mike looks out over the crowd swaying back and forth in front of his mic stand he calls out the next song. “White Neighbor” he called it. The ultimate fan favorite which isn’t actually “White Neighbor.” Every time you see Eye Hate God it gets more perfect than the time before. You can hold them to the highest standards and they will trample them and far surpass what you expected time and time again.