Brian Whitney
This Way for the Gas

Diversity in the Workplace

By - Apr 29th, 2010 10:47 pm
Sign-up for the Urban Milwaukee daily email

As you may or may not be aware, Milwaukee thrash-metal artisans Architects of the Aftermath are releasing a new CD. This Saturday they’re playing a release show for said CD at Club Garibaldi in Bay View, and you’d imagine they’d be playing with other straight metal-type bands (you know, black shirts with the band’s name printed indecipherably on the front, detuned guitars with extra strings, and other stereotypes that probably drive metal fans crazy.) Ordinarily this sort of thing would be the kind of show a person who isn’t a huge metal fan would see (probably on their Facebook Events page) and immediately write off.

However, Architects have instead assembled a genre-spanning lineup of quality Milwaukee bands that makes the show a must see event on a night crowded with events here in town (including but not limited to Blackbird Bar’s 1986 High School Prom, Pezzettino’s last show before moving to Brooklyn, and a show right across the street featuring up-and-comers Absolutely.) The other bands on the bill are nihilistic rock supergroup Death Dream (the term supergroup being used as loosely here as ever, but whatever), the punky Sabbathisms of Mother Orchis, and the baritone aggression of Centipedes. The band didn’t play it safe and stick to similar sounding bands (and, let it be said, the bands on the bill generally don’t play it safe w/r/t genres), and the result is a night that features quality bands with a similar aesthetic in terms of heavy music, but with four very different and novel approaches.

Look, I know that the word diversity has been stripped of any kind of meaning at this point, and any kind of comparison between, say, Affirmative Action and local music isn’t at all appropriate, but that is, in a way, what’s on display here. Instead of sticking with their own genre, school lunchroom-style, Architects put together a great show with a variety of bands whose admirers do not necessarily overlap. This is really how it should be done. I have no doubt that there are people who like metal, and only metal, and show up to see the Architects and spend the rest of the show at the bar. But for those who aren’t straight genre hoppers, who may have heard of one of these bands but not the others, this is an opportunity to hear some new, different takes on heavy.

Now certainly, this isn’t the first show to feature a diverse lineup in Milwaukee or anywhere, and Architects of the Aftermath are not the Branch Rickey of Milwaukee music or anything. That being said, it’s ultimately refreshing to see a show’s lineup assembled in this manner, and it would behoove bands/promoters to follow Architects’ lead on this one. It’s not far reaching or trying to fit some sort of diversity mandate, just features 4 heavier bands that don’t really sound at all like one another. Isn’t that enough?

Categories: Other-views, Preview, Rock

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *