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Friday, April 7, 2017

Live review: Famous Underground at Rockpile Bar, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, April 1st, 2017

April ‘Fool’s! I wasn’t really there….Double April Fools’, I was!

Having been around a few decades, I’d seen and heard Nicholas Walsh’s other projects Moxy and of course Slik Toxic and knew this was going to be good. Even better, I got to meet and greet with him at Metal On Ice’s sound check. We shared some tales of the Northwest Ontario icy, sometimes barren 60 below roads and he was the penultimate gentleman, coming to do his rendition of KickAxe’s ‘On The Road To Rock’; a blistering version, with a vox that hasn’t changed in over 20 years.

Pre-show I was introduced to ‘gasp!’ guitarist Kevin Gale of Slik Toxic who was at the green room and graciously chatted and signed my Slik CD!

Now, with the awesomely talented lineup of Nicholas Walsh - Vocals/Guitars, Laurie-Anne Green - Bass/BG Vocals, Desche Sparboom – Drums, Darren Boyd – Guitars and the night’s 2 opening acts of Manic Mouth and Teach Her Treason, FU pounded the crowd of about 200 at Toronto’s Rockpile bar like a new sword being forged on the Anvils of Metaldom.

Drawing from their self-titled record, they are now sporting a brand new download only “Digital 45” – Corrupted!

These players play! Dark brooding, ripping, face-melting guitars and hammering rhythm, songs like ‘Wasteland’, ‘Bullet Train’ and ‘Overdrive’ kick your ass right off the planet. I felt Nick’s frustration at the majority of attention-span-deficit crowd, interested in more filming than watching the excellent stage presence, and only cheering to the high-power metal wails when Lead Vox tore down the walls. The band is super-tight and the metal energy is felt onstage. The smaller venue is ideal as you can get up close and personal to the stage, take a few pics and listen to all the little live show nuances.

Their encore was an interesting fusion as they ended with Megadeth’s ‘Peace Sells” and Bob Marley’s ‘Get Up, Stand Up’ which, I think, mixed the fans’ metal feelings. I despise that song personally but socially, I see what their outlook was and give full points on creativity and guts for sounding that out in a bar that is TOTAL metal.

Post show, the band was readily available, dripping sweat in their heavy metal glory, to talk to fans, pose for pics and sign the merch. Everyone was ultra-friendly despite giving it all on stage and no one fan left disappointed that I heard.

An 11(RIP James Marshall of Marshall Amps)/10 for this show and hoping to hear more FU!

Written by Alessandro

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