Anyone checking out THE SWORD on their headlining club tour is advised to get there early, to check out Metal Blade recording artist GYPSYHAWK, whose straight ahead '70s guitar rock album, Revelry and Resilience bears an uncanny resemblance to Phil Lynott fronted THIN LIZZY.
Granted, during the current (short, sic song set) run, they've opted to lean a little more towards the bluesy doom of the headlining talent and/or DOWN than the classic metal stylings from the UK, but a fair number of attendees were not only familiar with the Pasadena, CA act's music, but preferred it over the band that followed. A former popular downtown eatery has been transformed into Union Transfer, the new Philly venue similar to the old NYC Limelight, complete with vaulted steel skeletal structures, plus a '20s era, carved wooden bank teller window, complete with beveled glass.
Gypsyhawk are fronted by bassist Eric Harris (HUNTRESS/ex-SKELETONWITCH), a long haired, no nonsense SOB who bears a resemblance to SPINAL TAP's Derek Smalls. He introduced one song, looking for scientists, "Don't worry, we won't beat you up!" Referencing Robert Barantheon (from The Game Of Thrones), 'The Hedgeking' was prefaced by a question about how many people read books (not Kindles, e-readers, nor online blogs), giving you some headspace from where these cats live. Throughout 'Eyes Of Ibad' they were bathed in blue light.
If these guys were from down south, instead of Pasadena, the sound would probably be described as shit-kicking rock n roll. As if to prove the point, a supercharged cover of RAM JAM's 'Black Betty' (also popularized by TOM JONES) showcased not only the groove, but the get up and go that characterizes this band's music. The evening ended with a bass rumbling introduction to the pink lighted 'State Lines', which took on almost thrash proportions, live. Rock on!