Live Report & Pictures: Gojira, The Devin Townsend Project, The Atlas Moth

Gojira

France’s Gojira completed a run of dates with The Devin Townsend Project and hand-picked support band The Atlas Moth. The shows included a pair of NYC stops at Music Hall of Williamsburg on Feb 18th and last night (2/19), rescheduled due to Nemo, at Irving Plaza. Scab Casserole filed his review from the former, which is coupled with pictures from the latter below.

A weird crowd gathers at the Music Hall of Williamsburg. Why such a ragtag selection of metalheads have come together here is questionable—maybe it’s the Monday night President’s Day date; maybe it’s tomorrow the rescheduled Manhattan show at Irving Plaza stealing many of the New York regulars; maybe it’s the bands on the bill, each with their own brand of old-school but off-kilter aggression. It’s most likely the latter. In fact, it’s most likely the headline: France’s Gojira have gone from being underground fascination to metallic champions, and their strangely positive yet unrelenting brand of kinetic metal reaches out to fans of all kinds. The audience has its share of bespectacled tech-nerds, scruffy hipsters, shaggy dirtbags, and one or two blue-blooded battle-jacketed heshers. All seem happy to be here.

The Atlas Moth from Chicago is the first band to take the stage, and immediately those in attendance pay attention. The band’s echoing smokiness could easily be a product of hours in the studio, yet here in Williamsburg they are perfectly on-point, conveying all the bleak mind-bending decay that they illustrate so powerfully on 2011’s unforgettable An Ache for the Distance. Songs like “Holes In The Desert” have the intestinal melancholy and ethereal anguish that one expects of the Moth, and the closing title track off of Distance feels like the slow-burn of apocalyptic cinders. Between these bouts of soulful heaviness, frontman Stavros Giannopoulos still manages to come across as funny and human with his stage banter—“Please, if you have weed, I want it. You can find me at the bar, pretending to be high as hell.”

If the Atlas Moth is a humanistic funeral dirge, the Devin Townsend Project is a candy-coated nursery rhyme about ball sacks. With manic energy, the band’s keyboard-soaked power-thrash pounds along at a mid-paced gallop, backed by bizarre cartoons and computerized psychedelia. The man himself saunters from one side of the stage to the other like the love child of John Waters and Nosferatu, regarding his fans with a limp wrist and a snarky insult, and repeatedly apologizing for “sounding like Marge Simpson.” For all his ridiculous gallivanting, though, Townsend is a powerful figure to behold; not only does he manage to get much of the crowd to throw up jazz hands and form a giant group hug, he ends the set with a poignant comment on metal’s simian aggression being wrapped around a warm center of human emotion.

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Atlas Moth

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

The Devin Townsend Project

More photos of Gojira and the rest of the review continues…

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