The Contortionist/ Animals as Leaders/ and Between the Buried and Me @ The Observatory, Santa Ana CA 7/21/15

Back yet again at The Observatory (my third time this month) and this time I was looking forward to the very different vibe this concert was sure to have, at least compared to the past two I had been to (X and Built to Spill). The show was definitely the kind I like best: loud, rambunctious, and METAL.

Coming to the show, I had no idea who The Contortionist and Animals as Leaders were ( I don’t know how Animals as Leaders evaded my radar), and I had only been a rather recent Between the Buried and Me “fan” after one of my coworkers introduced the band to me, but I was still pretty curious to see how their music would resonate with me.

The Contortionist was the first band to open and they were definitely progressive. I kept being reminded of Dream Theater, except with the thought that they weren’t as good. But I suppose that’s an unfair assertion, I mean it is Dream Theater after all- not fair to compare.  What got my attention the most was their frontman Mike Lessard who had the most interesting stage presence. While performing he does this stomping/slow walk up and down the stage, almost like he’s creeping along looking for something. It was interesting and he definitely had my attention. Of all three bands I was able to capture the most quality images, so I hope you like these, because the photos I have of Animals as Leaders and Between the Buried and Me are nowhere near as good.

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I also really liked their backdrop they had behind them. Pretty cool.

Now like I mentioned, I had never heard of Animals as Leaders, and after hearing them live yesterday well I can certainly say I’m a fan. Best part about that band? No singer, ALL INSTRUMENTAL. I fucking love it when I come across all instrumental metal bands, because sometimes I feel like the singer just gets in the way. I didn’t hear a song by these guys that I didn’t like and I think that they were even better than Between the Buried and Me. YEAH THAT’S RIGHT I SAID IT. Yeah, these guys were by far my favorite. Now I cringe at this photo I’m about to post, because it really is just crap, but it was all I was able to get as far as photographs. I did, however, manage to get quite a few good videos which you can find on my youtube channel.


By the time Between the Buried and Me came on the crowd was pretty antsy, and when they finally came on stage, the crowd erupted. While I may not have been rockin’ out as hard as everyone else, I still really enjoyed their show and I’m happy that I came away with a lot of good footage (except for photographs. ;-( ). After I couldn’t record anymore, I was feeling a bit bored, and so I decided that the best course of action was to hustle on through to the pit, which always makes a show more worthwhile. The crowd was very energetic, which is always good.  But, I noticed that there was an obscene amount of grown men trying to crowd surf, and consequently I got kicked in the head twice, but hey, it was fun. I have to say though, I thought the best part of the show was their encore because they played Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody.” This surprised the hell out of me and it was pretty cool having literally everyone in the room freaking out and singing along, plus I had never gotten to hear “Bohemian Rhapsody” live before, so props to you Between the Buried and Me. Alright so below I’ll go ahead and post the only two decent photos I got of these guys, and as far as footage I did get a few videos so you can also find those on my youtube page.

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Oh yeah, it was a fun Tuesday.

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