I'm fairly lucky as far as local alt-weekly writers go. I get a fair amount of correspondence from readers and not all of it is angry. Besides comments and shares on social media, I now have exactly three people who have created accounts on this newspaper's website whose usernames are some kind of pun on the last name of yours truly. Emails tend to be of the "you don't like the Eagles? Go kill yourself" variety but hey, the Internet, right? This past week, however, I got the following email:
This is about my 4th time writing the Tucson Weekly in hopes of reaching someone that might be able to help me, and/or answer my question.
I play in a metal band here in Tucson, AZ called TRIBULANCE and was wondering who I could talk to about possibly doing a write up on us, and/or a cd review type article?
I've never gotten a response from anyone i've written so far so hopefully the 5thtimes a charm.
Any info/support you could give me would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks for your time.
Hello member of Tribulance!
Thank you for writing. I hope you'll forgive me but I've decided to do a little review of your current album The Aftermath of Lies right here.
I like it.
My tastes tend to lean more towards hip-hop and postpunk but I'd like to think I know a little about metal. Tribulance plays some variant of power metal, the neo-'80s form of doom and gloom speed metal that prioritizes instrumental virtuosity, super-fast tempos and high pitched, pseudo-operatic vocals, right? Perhaps I'm revealing my age but your band reminds me of a cross between Overkill and Lizzie Borden. But let's not digress.
Three songs on your record really stuck out to me. The anthemic "Oblivious," the charging "Walk the Talk" and what I consider to be your crowning achievement, the title cut, "The Aftermath of Lies."
Both of the former have standout playing and memorable choruses and pretty killer guitar solos but "Aftermath" is where I really thought your band excelled, and not just because the title reminded me of a favorite Stones album.
In this particular song, you guys combined timely political (but not preachy) lyrics, a rhythmic groove that in a parallel universe might have ended up as funk, a percussion accent that, if I'm not mistaken, is the cowbell from an 808 drum machine (!), and you wrapped it all together in a catchy and concise package.
I enjoyed it a lot and wish you guys all the success in the world, although since the band member who wrote the above email is a mine engineer, success in the music world might be a step down financially. Then again, you named your band Tribulance so who knows? Thanks again for writing.