On November 30th, Brick By Brick provided San Diego with a showcase of some great bands from Southern California. This show was a part of the “Ride or Die” tour headlined by Solus Deus. The show started out with two bands from San Diego; Gravespell and On Descent.

Gravespell took the stage first. Gravespell is a 5 piece blackened metal band whose music seems to be influenced by bands like Emperor and Carcass. The music for this band was really good and they played it well. Unfortunately, I wish this band showed more emotion in their playing. I felt like they were just playing and not truly performing for the audience. The lead guitarist had some great solos in their songs showing the true talent of this group of individuals. My favorite song of their set had to be their last song, “Intrinsic Frost.” The clean guitar intro was a great change of pace for their set. Overall, Gravespell was a great opening act for this show, but to me, this band’s set felt more like a jam session rather than a performance to connect with the audience.

The next band to play was On Descent. On Descent is a 4 piece metal band and I was impressed by their set. The vocalist of the band showed great crowd interaction. The band looked happy and pleased to play the show via reactions with the crowd and interactions between other band members. They were also very appreciative of the crowd and thanked everyone for being there and gestures like that have always stood out to me. In comparison to the opening act, On Descent focused more on the performance and provided a good live show.

The first band of the “Ride or Die” tour took the stage after On Descent. Spades and Blades is a 5 piece band from the Los Angeles area signed to Sullen Musik. The vocalist, Jason Todd, took command of the crowd and the band drew in the audience with their high energy songs. Spades and Blades gave a great performance with a strong sense of rhythm, synchronized jumping, and hard hitting riffs. The band spent time onstage to talk about touring stories and thanked everyone for coming out. Spades and Blades is an up and coming force to be reckoned with and I hope they come back to play more shows in the San Diego region.

After Spades and Blades, Solus Deus began to play. Solus Deus is a powerhouse of a band featuring members from Bleed the Sky, Chimaira, and Living Sacrifice. The band members had great stage presence which shows signs of their experience as performers. The vocalist, Jey, seemed to enjoy his time on stage in front of us and even jumped into the crowd to mosh with audience members. Both the guitarists were mobile on the stage to make sure they gave an experience and performance to members of both sides of the stage. There was a couple timing issues in their set, but this didn’t faze the band at all as they fixed these issues immediately. Solus Deus provided an excellent set and hung out after the show to meet anyone who wanted to talk or get pictures with them.

Brick By Brick gave San Diego a great night of metal with a wide variety of metal from different subgenres. Special thanks to Brick By Brick and Jason Todd of Spades and Blades for letting us here at SDMETAL cover this great show.

If you want to find out more about any of these bands, I would highly recommend checking out their Facebook pages. The links are posted below.

Gravespell Facebook

On Descent Facebook

Spades And Blades Facebook

Solus Deus Facebook

3 Responses

  1. Co

    Sometimes simplicity n lyricism is a calculated decision, anyone who’s ever listened to an ac/dc album knows that. complicated or involved does not always equal better. if less repetitive or more intricate lyrics/music is what you feel was missing it could just be a matter of preference. just a personal opinion

    • Ethan Wick

      Thanks for your input! It is true a lot of bands have the repetitive nature in their lyrics. In some cases, this can be a downfall for certain people, so I figured I would mention it. In my review of Solus Deus’s newest EP, I mentioned how this is an advantage for them in a live setting so the crowd can sing along with the band. It also helps get the point across. Music is a matter of preference in a lot of cases.

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