A heavy and diverse triple bill hit the Queen last night with Between the Buried and Me, TesseracT and Astronoid. It was a decent crowd for a Tuesday night metal show in Wilmington, with a mostly-full standing room on the floor. Boston’s Astronoid kicked things off, fresh off the release of their second full length (and self-titled) album. Astronoid are the real deal, a unique combination of Explosions in the Sky, Mew, Opeth and even the Cocteau Twins in how the vocals are utilized as an instrument. I’ve seen them described as “dream-thrash”, which only starts to tell the story. They played a pounding 30-minute set pulling from their new album as well as treats like “Up and Atom” from their debut release Air. Soaring vocals and thunderous drums are a nice combination.
TesseracT were next in line, a British progressive metal band who combine thrash and math rock in a way that is surprisingly structured. There was clearly a large following in the house for these guys, based on the crowd reaction. Rhythmic stop/start guitars and soaring vocals from Daniel Tompkins were the framework for an energized set. Tesseract have always been technically impressive to me, but their live show was a whole different thing altogether.
Between the Buried and Me, who were nominated for a Grammy this year, were the headliners. A doom / prog metal band fronted by vocalist Tommy Giles Rogers, they shift between melodic and Cookie Monster metal vocals. The band released both Automata I and II in 2018, and pulled heavily from it in their setlist, opening with “The Proverbial Bellow” from Automata II, a 13-minute behemoth, and closing out the night with their hit from Automata I, the crunchy “Condemned to the Gallows.”
It is great to have shows like this in Delaware, it’s usually the kind of thing one would have to travel to the Troc or Electric Factory for, and this is a much better experience on all levels.
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