By Brandon “B-Mac” McCarthy, Photos & “Skumlove” Piece by Matt “Rabit” Martinez Red Hare Images
You ever had those long weeks at work and you want to do nothing but blow off some steam by listening to intense heavy metal? Well, that is what Matt and I experienced the week of May 6th. We both worked very hard that week and we decided to treat ourselves to some extreme industrial strength metal music. Enter aggrotech juggernauts Combichrist. Hailing from Atlanta, Geor., Combichrist was founded by Icon of Coil madman Andy LaPlegua in 2003, and ever since then, they have dominated the industrial scene that combines industrial metal with powerful techno music. I first saw them in 2017 with Dope at the Regent in L.A. Wouldn’t you know it, Matt and I went to see them at the same place that Friday. One of Rabit’s favorite metal groups, they are joined by Skumlove and Silver Snakes.
Opening the night was SoCal local industrial metal band, and band of perverted hedonists, Skumlove. Fronted by Skum Love himself, who commands the stage as a type of sinister minister. As they opened the night with “My Machine,” the band was flanked by two naughty nuns who danced and enticed the audience with their witchy movements. Bassist DB could be seen dancing with one of the nuns like he was being controlled by her hypnotic ways. Drummer Rattan kept the beats consistent and upbeat, while guitarist Robyn Sin was playing guitar riffs for two and slaying it. Skum Love announced that playing this show almost didn’t happen as their other guitarist Garrison Todd Fagro recently passed away. However, they knew he would have wanted them to continue and play the music he helped create. Playing songs like “Son of A Gun,” “Devil May Sing,” “New Perversion,” “Devil’s Darling,” and ending the night with “Anti-American Idol.” Skumlove brought the debauchery to the Regent Theatre with sexy nuns, hedonistic songs, and the crowd ate it up the entire time.
Full Skumlove gallery below:
Up next was Los Angeles’ own underground rock success, Silver Snakes. This group has a unique approach to their sound, crossing the boundaries between electronic, rock and industrial. Founded by vocalist/guitarist/programmer Alex Estrada in 2011, we saw Silver Snakes a couple of years ago when they opened for The Black Moods in Fullerton. Just like in Fullerton, the theatre was cast in pitch black with ambiance lighting around them as well as a white screen showing trippy abstract animation, making it almost impossible to shoot. While Estrada laid down the electronic beats that is layered nicely with alternative grooves, bassist Michael Trujillo and guitarist Mike Woods provided the industrial hooks that makes the music dark and psychedelic like. I did not catch any of the songs they performed save for one, “Smokedance,” which is the 1st track off their new album, Death and the Moon. It is difficult to say how I truly feel about Silver Snakes because they are of unique taste, but I will say they challenge the mind and think outside the box when creating stellar rock ‘n’ roll.
Full Silver Snakes gallery below:
Following Silver Snakes, it was time to get techno with Combichrist. Starting things off with “Hate Like Me,” the room starting to go chaotic for their industrial heroes. LaPlegua is running all over the stage while hollering his lungs out. He is lord over all his minions that have to worship his hellacious screams. His style reminds me a lot of Rammstein’s overlord Till Lindemann because they can get mean and nasty while showing their admiration for the fans. Guitarist Eric13 laid down hard and vicious guitar riffs that sounded down right brutal, which is a good thing. This time around, Combichrist featured 2 new drummers, Will Spodnick and Dane White, who were looking to lay some new stomping ground for the group. Both dropped the hammer big time on both drum kits. While it was not a sold crowd like the time I saw them, there were enough fans there to give Combichrist the love that they deserve. From “Never Surrender” to “The Evil in Me,” “Guns at Last Dawn,” “Throat Full of Glass,” “Can’t Control,” “Follow the Trail of Blood,” “No Redemption,” “Today I Woke to the Rain of Blood,” and “What The Fuck Is Wrong With You,” pleasurable agony filled up the room. Originally slated to do one encore, LaPlegua loved the energy in room, so he decided to do 3 songs, including “Maggots at the Party.”
Full CombiChrist gallery below:
This group was just the right band to help me blow off some steam after work. Combichrist, though not 100% sold on the name, brought the damage to the masses. They know how to whip everyone into a metal frenzy. It is always a good time to be at the Regent, so I wonder who will be stopping by there next time around. To Combichrist, Silver Snakes, and Skumlove, I salute you. Horns up!!!