I‘ll tell you who Black Tusk is (and I’m not talking about the volcanic mountain in British Columbia – although this band would certainly remind one of a heavy metal wrath of 400 MPH volcanic thrash headed straight down your culdesac).
So, I knew nothing about this band when I showed up at Emo’s in Austin on 8/26 (I’m old, and until now, haven’t been “out” much). But I was enough of a dork to show up early and actually get some time to chat with Black Tusk’s guitarist/singer Andrew. Me being the nebby curiositist (I don’t think that’s a word – and frankly I don’t care) that I am, I started asking a pile of questions.
The first thing that struck my attention was the band’s outlay of merch and how ridiculously their album art, tees, and associated schwag reminded me of Baroness’ album art. Me being the dumbass that I am, I learned very quickly that John Dyer Baizley actually does their album art – yep! (Seriously, does that drum kit not kick enough ass or what?!?).
Ironically, the night before, I had just been sharing with a friend that he best get his a** to see Baroness in time for their spot on tour with the Deftones in Tampa (I know this isn’t really relevant, but it’s somewhat ironic, bear with me).
Anyhoo, my discussion with Andrew led me into finding out that I was about to see a band that sounded like Motorhead and Black Sabbath just got together for a backyard BBQ (Hol-ee Hannibal Lecter!).
SWAMP METAL – that was the shorter description I got, and the one in which I like most. In two short words, it sums up this Savannah, GA band quite nicely. And my god almighty, if you’re thinking about seeing this band live, you might want to start preparing your ears a few days early.
If you’re into bands like High on Fire and Mastodon, or just feel like taking your ears on a death trip to Hades and back, you’ll LOVE Black Tusk! And these guys are just cool as hell. The bass player has one of the baddest beards I’ve ever seen (not to mention a bitchin’ six shooter tattoo on his neck), they use some of the coolest gear I’ve seen in a while (’91 Flying V’s, Marshall stacks, and dinged-up bass guitars – I just love it when the gear looks like it’s been through the war), and they just flat out shred like a pack of pissed-off bison just plowed through Pittsburgh.
I could barely tell what the hell they were singing about during their set, but I don’t know that I needed to. I’m pretty sure it was bad ass. I think I was so wrapped up in the Drop-D killer chord mayhem that I wasn’t even paying attention.
Anyhoo…this was one of those weird nights where I felt like it was just meant to see these guys. Too much weird shit just happened along the way. I’m a huge High on Fire fan and their ridiculous galloping drum blasts and shred sessions make me feel like I’m in the middle of conquering a forest full of werewolves in the middle of Macedonia (come on, I know you crank that last minute of “Cometh Down Hessian” up to 900 too).
Anyhoo…Black Tusk falls right in line, and I had a killer time meeting these guys while being introduced to their unique brand of SWAMP METAL. They just flat out kick ass. And I’m pretty sure I enjoyed a few too many PBRs while I was at it. “Black Tusk” just fits this band so perfectly. For a moment, I actually felt like the hellish wrath of a hot lava sh*t storm was upon us.
FAIR WARNING: THIS BAND IS LOUD AS HELL!!!
If you’re into heavier than hell heavy metal, do yourselves a favor and go here –> http://blacktuskterror.com/ right now and check out all that this band has to offer.