Wednesday, March 13th, 2024

Between The Buried And Me Presents: The Colors Experience

The Acacia Strain

$27.50 - $60.00 Get Tickets UPGRADE TO VIP
Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 PM ALL AGES
Between The Buried And Me Presents: The Colors Experience

Event Info

Venue Information:
Brooklyn Bowl Philadelphia
1009 Canal Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19123

This ticket is valid for standing room only, general admission. ADA accommodations are available day of show. All support acts are subject to change without notice. Any change in showtimes, safety protocols, and other important information will be relayed to ticket-buyers via email. ALL SALES ARE FINAL

Artist Info

Between The Buried And Me

Time may move in a circle, but we pick up wisdom along the way. When we face similar situations further down the line, we’re armed with the experience to not only survive, but actually thrive. Between The Buried and Me built their influential 2007 album, Colors, on an unwavering commitment to artistic integrity. They’ve only fortified that commitment on its 2021 sequel, Colors II [Sumerian Records]. The circumstances surrounding both records bear key similarities, yet the North Carolina quintet—Tommy Rogers [lead vocals, keyboards], Paul Waggoner [lead and rhythm guitar, backing and lead vocals], Dustie Waring [rhythm and lead guitar], Blake Richardson [drums], and Dan Briggs [bass, keyboards]—once again stretch the boundaries of their signature sound and heavy music at large.
“Especially with 2020, we really wanted to give it all we could and show the world we’re still here,” explains Tommy. “That’s part of the reason we named it Colors II. We were in a similar spot when we did the first Colors. Back then, we had just gotten done with OZZfest. We were wondering, ‘Where do we belong in this music scene?’ We still struggle with that. At both of these moments in our career, we decided to just be ourselves and write the best album we can. We came out guns blazing, and I feel like it’s some of our most creative material in a long time.”
Colors was very much our attempt at a do-or-die statement,” recalls Paul. “We had to establish our identity and be who we really wanted to be in order to have a career. This time around, our industry was shutdown for a year. Once tours were cancelled due to the Pandemic, we were like, ‘We’ve got to write a record, and it’s got to be good’. We had to do something next level.”
They did so with nearly 20 years of hard-earned experience behind them. Their fourth offering Colors represented the first in a series of high watermarks. It graced numerous tastemaker lists, including KERRANG!’s “The 21 Best U.S. Metalcore Albums of All Time, Prog’s “The 100 Greatest Prog Albums of All Time, ThoughtCo’s “Essential Progressive Metal Albums, and Loudwire’s “Top 25 Progressive Metal Albums of All Time” and “Top 100 Hard Rock and Heavy Metal Albums of the 21st Century.In its wake, 2015’s Coma Ecliptic opened at #12 on the Billboard Top 200 and received a perfect rating from The Guardian. During 2018, they unleashed the two-part Automata I and Automata II to further acclaim. Along the way, the group toured with everyone from Mastodon and Coheed and Cambria to Lamb of God and Devin Townsend in addition to selling out headline shows around the globe.
Throughout 2020, the band members wrote remotely before congregating in Winston-Salem, NC with longtime producer Jamie King. Instead of adhering to a conceptual thread, the conditions gave the concept meaning.
“Musically, it flows like a sequel to Colors, but it wasn’t just another version of that album,” Tommy goes on. “On the original, I was analyzing myself and analyzing humanity. With last year, I was in a perfect position to do that. I wrote lyrics in the same way, but they felt new. It was more of a real-world concept by virtue of making a continuation.”
They introduce the album with the pummeling single “Fix The Error.” Galloping thrash drums collides with a wah-ed bass solo and carnival-esque keys before launching into gritty verses. It twists and turns towards a hardcore chant punctuated by topsy-turvy vocals and mind-numbing fretboard fireworks underpinned by drum solos by an ironclad trifecta of Mike Portnoy, Navene Koperweis, and Ken Schalk.
“The intention was to write a metal song with a big gospel vibe,” smiles Tommy. “It turned into this monster. It’s a small story on the record about this guy who lives in a big apocalyptic city. He retires from his job, but he wants to take down this huge corporation. The song is a celebration of taking down corruption and saying, ‘Fuck you’, to the man. It’s about as punk as we’ll ever get.”
Meanwhile, the nine-minute “Revolution In Limbo” steamrolls through frenetic keys with fascinating guitar movements and a head-spinning vocal ebb-and-flow. “The songs are meant to flow in and out of each other like one big chunk of music, creating a seamless and chaotic musical journey, the frontman observes.
Between The Buried and Me encode various “easter eggs” for fans of the original Colors inside of the opening salvo of “Monochrome” and “The Double Helix of Extinction,” while “Bad Habits” calls back to the lyrics of “Ants Of The Sky” with the line, “Sleep on…fly on.
“There are a lot of fun nuggets,” Paul continues. “You’ll hear certain instrumental parts and lyrics that remind you of Colors. Everything comes full circle.”
In the end, Colors II sees Between The Buried and Me make a similar connection.
“Music’s purpose is to help,” Tommy eaves off. “That’s a big theme of this album. Once our songs are done, they belong to our listeners. Maybe this will help them move forward creatively or in life.”
“I hope audiences get a feeling similar to what they got when Colors came out,” Paul concludes. “This is a full 80-minute album experience. For years, fans have told us how much they loved Colors. I hope they feel the same way about Colors II.”

The Acacia Strain

After the dust settles and the apocalypse runs its course, art will still persist in the wake of insanity. Society may crumble, but music endures and even thrives. The Acacia Strain document this deconstruction from the front row. The metal institution—Vincent Bennett [vocals], Kevin Boutot [drums], Devin Shidaker [guitar], Griffin Landa [bass], and Tom “The Hammer” Smith, Jr. [guitar]—survey humanity’s fate with seasick grooves, thrash precision, doom vulnerability, and vocal convulsions in 2020 throughout a series of five digital and physical two-song seven-inches. These releases ultimately comprise their eighth full-length offering, Slow Decay [Rise Records]. 

Unveiled in three-week increments, the music and the rollout itself adhere to 
a calculated vision.

“The whole concept is reality breaking down around us,” explains Vincent. “We’ve done our time on earth, broken through the boundaries of what reality actually is, and we’re now witnessing our collective descent into madness. Lyrically and sonically, everything reflects that. You’re getting the vision piece by piece. The whole theme is a slow dive. By the same token, it organically becomes one record instead of just one big push out of the gate. As soon as you think you’re getting the hang of it, we throw out a wrench with the full-length. There’s no evidence to suggest we’re aren’t actually in a living hell. The things happening around us could be out of a comic book or a movie. The idea is, ‘This can’t be real’. Maybe something happened. Maybe we’re all dead and we don’t even know it. Maybe we’re just living in some augmented reality hellscape of actual planet earth.”

Founded in 2001, such ponderousness always crept between the cracks of the band’s menacing maelstrom of metal and hardcore. As such, they engendered diehard fandom within a cult audience and put up unprecedented numbers for an extreme act. The 2010 opus Wormwood spawned standouts “Beast” [3.8 million Spotify streams] and “The Hills Have Eyes” [1.4 million Spotify streams]. Meanwhile, 2014’s Coma Witch staked out a spot in the Top 35 of the Billboard Top 200. In 2017, Gravebloom soared to the Top 5 of the Billboard US Independent Albums Chart and yielded “Worthless,” which exceeded 1.7 million Spotify streams to date. Along the way, they toured with the likes of Architects UK, Hatebreed, and Crowbar in addition to selling out countless headline gigs. 

Capping off 2019, they surprised fans everywhere with the seven-song conceptual EP, It Comes In Waves. Not only did it tally 1 million total streams in less than a month, but it engendered some of the best reviews of the group’s career. In a 9-out-of-10 star review, Metal Injection claimed, “It’s 30 minutes of doom, death metal, atmosphere, and storytelling that is hands down the best thing they’ve ever done,” and Decibel dubbed it, “the most interesting and varied record of The Acacia Strain’s nearly-twenty-year career.” 

With It Comes In Waves as a launchpad, they ramped up this momentum in 2020.

“We fully experimented on It Comes In Waves,” Vincent continues. “It made us grow musically. When we got back in the studio, we didn’t follow a typical formula. We integrated the sound of It Comes In Waves into what we normally would’ve done. Slow Decay is a culmination of everything that The Acacia Strain is mashed into twelve solid songs.”

Throughout September 2019, The Acacia Strain recorded at Griffin’s studio alongside producer Randy LeBoeuf [Kublai Khan, Left Behind] in Des Moines, IA. Even though they tracked drums at the same spot for It Comes In Waves, it marked the first time they cut a whole record in Iowa and worked with Randy. Additionally, they expanded the soundscapes with wooden frog and other “weird percussion instruments.” 

As a whole, they also perfected their patented approach.

“We were able to write emotional doom songs,” states Vincent. “We’re trying to evolve, and we hope people evolve with us.”

They introduced this chapter with the seven-inch D in February. “Feed A Pigeon Breed A Rat” slips from an ominous ticking into a crushing chug as the vocalist screams, “It feels like hell.” Meanwhile, the accompanying “Seeing God” [feat. Aaron Heard of Jesus Piece & Nothing] teeters between a gnashing riff and guttural growls.

“These two tracks bridge the gap,” he goes on. “‘Feed A Pigeon Breed A Rat’ is about how certain parts of society are just ignorant to the norm. Sometimes, you have to follow the rules in order to survive though. ‘Seeing God’ is the beginning of the explanation of what’s to come. It’s a style of death metal we’ve hoped to do for a long time. We’ve also wanted to showcase guest vocalists, and Aaron killed it.”

In March, the E seven-inch touts “Solace and Serenity” and “The Lucid Dream” [feat. Jess Nyx]. According to Vincent, “Those two songs plunge you deeper into this world.” April’s C seven-inch boasts his two personal favorites: “Crossgates” and “I Breathed in the smoke deeply it tasted like death and I Smiled” [feat. Zach Hatfield of Left Behind]. The latter hinges on a hulking beat as it builds towards a hypnotic and haunting refrain warped and wrapped in a delicate doom-scape.

“It’s about a very emotional time in my life,” admits Vincent. “I recorded it last, so I could make sure I was emotionally available to record it. The time didn’t break me, but what I was going through shines through.”
During May, A unleashed “Inverted Person” and “Chhinnamasta” as June’s Y delivered “One Thousand Painful Stings [feat. Courtney LaPlante of Spiritbox & iwrestledabearonce] and the finale “EARTH WILL BECOME DEATH.” LaPlante’s inclusion widened the scope yet again.

“Courtney’s got a beautiful voice,” the singer affirms. “What she did really blew us away, and it added another dimension.”

These seven-inches ultimately form on Slow Decay and a statement for The Acacia Strain.

“I want people to know we’re still here,” Vincent leaves off. “2021 will be 20 years of The Acacia Strain. We’re still making music, growing, doing new things, and encourage others to do the same.  We want everyone to be more creative and aware of the way they do things. It’s art after all. There’s more out there than what’s in front of our faces. I’ve been doing this since I was 19. The band is my life; I’m going to keep pushing.”

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