PENTAGRAM - US Doom Veterans Kick-Off Tour In Philly

October 2, 2015, 3 years ago

Mark Gromen

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Underground Arts on a rainy Wednesday evening, the threat of another hurricane hitting the region, on the weekend, did little to persuade the metal faithful from showing up. A regular attendee at high profile events, like Wacken And 70,000 Tons Of Metal, but also go to weeknight shows with 100 people or less. Yes, I'm a lifer! Not a lot of places to pre-game, although the whiskey & go-go bar (aka Trestle Inn) is a short walk from the front doors. Midweek, they offer free samples of hard liquor (tonight it was Gentleman Jack), as the usual loops of ‘60s era foreign/go-go films are shown on the walls.

Rock ‘n’ roll keeps you young. Bobby Leibling is Exhibit A. Rail thin, wandering through the crowd, beforehand, he might be mistaken for an eclectic club owner/promoter or someone's out of place grandfather. Silver, mushroom cap haircut and handlebar mustache, neither are his most distinguishing feature. That would be his bulging, Marty Feldman eyes. Onstage, he's rejuvenated: splaying legs into a near split, falling to his knees, leaning against mainstay guitarist Victor Griffin. While the bespectacled string bender faces the stack of amps to induce feedback, Liebling air guitars, gyrates, even pulls on his locks, then goes over to caress the amps himself. Alongside decades old staples like “Relentless”, “Sign Of The Wolf” and the ubiquitous “20 Buck Spin” encore finale, there are new Curious Volume tracks, including “Lay Down And Die”, “Devil's Playground” and the title cut. 

Don't typically get enthused about heretofore unknown opening acts, but Cincy based Electric Citizen were a revelation. They're a husband (guitar) and wife (vocals) foursome, with an affinity for Sabbath inspired originals (similar to the west coast's Castle). A true singer (not shouts/shrieks) Laura Dolan is a raven haired waif who knows how to work a stage, especially when NOT on the mic, relying on arm motions and facial expressions. Can't remember the last time an unsolicited act was even remotely interesting. Check out Electric Citizen onstage:


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