MUNICIPAL WASTE @ La Respuesta, San Juan, Puerto Rico

Spread the metal:

Thrash, Mosh and Die…

MUNICIPAL WASTE  @ La Respuesta, San Juan, Puerto Rico

Saturday September 29th  2012

Review & Photography by Fran Jaume

Produced by K&K Entertainment, the Thrash, Mosh & Die concert turned out to be a fun, diverse event in terms of the bands’ performances and crowd reaction. It was a real challenge getting to the event: my car broke down the previous night and I could not find somebody to hitch a ride with! Finally, after many attempts, I managed to hitch a ride with Dennis Rivera, bassist/vocalist of local Thrash Metal band D.O.D.

If it wasn’t for him letting me tag along, this review wouldn’t have been possible, so I am very thankful to him!

Once we got to La Respuesta, it was obvious that the show would be packed, as many people stood in line trying to get inside. Unfortunately, the first local band; Cabal, had already played so I did not get a chance to hear their set that night. 

Once I managed to get inside the venue, the first thing I noticed was that the lighting on stage was poor, which I personally thought was a bummer, since previous events featured good lighting onstage. You could barely see band members moving onstage.

The next band was No Muertos; a Hardcore Punk band from the west side of the island.

It was the first time I saw them opening for a somebody, and I have to say, they stole the show that night, even though they were only able to play a very short set.

The band is composed of singer German Troche, guitarists Alejandro Ramos and Marcos Corchado, Drummer Luis Angel "Bebi" Velazquez, and Gabriel "Gabi" Quiñones on bass.

The band really left a very good impression on everybody, and all the members were very energetic onstage. The songs were fast and loud, and the guitarists brought in certain elements like Metal riffs and solos on some songs that at times gave them a sort of Crossover Thrash feel to the band.

Problems arose, however, when they were asked to shorten their set list, since there were certain problems with the schedules and bands had to cut their set. 

Thus, No Muertos’ was cut short; in fact, they were the band with the least amount of time, which really was a shame because I believe this band made quite an impression that night.

During No Muertos’ set, people started going crazy: during the song “Mundo Alrevez”, a mosh pit erupted and stage diving began immediately.

Vocalist German has a certain charisma as he jumped around onstage while singing in his particular Punk raspy voice, which I believe got everyone else motivated. 

As mentioned earlier, the guitar players are very good, but credit must also go to drummer "Bebi" Velazquez, who kept pounding his drum kit at a frenetic pace with a lot of precision and never slowing down. This could also be said of Gabi on bass, which kept things tight, a feat considering that they were always moving, jumping around onstage.

No Muertos Setlist:

1.  Mundo Alrevez

2.  Baghdad

3. Objetivo Pana

4. Ojo por Ojo

5. Dia a Dia

6. No Muertos

7. Puchi

8. Kimbo

Next band to take the stage were Humanist.

The band is composed of Headhunter on Vocals, Kadriel on Guitars, Disease on Bass and Terrorist on Drums. Humanist is a Black Metal band which was a last minute addition and were not announced nor featured on the flyer. Somebody mentioned that the band never announces when or where they are going to play.

The band brought a lot of "props" onstage, such as dead hens, dead rats, and what appeared to be bones smeared in some red glob used for blood.

These bones were flaunted at the audience by Headhunter, the band’s vocalist and these antics got some people angry, yet others seemed to enjoy the band’s music.

Humanist experienced some technical problems at first, since the vocals could not be heard. Headhunter proceeded to pour some of the red stuff on himself, so whenever he sang, he would end up spitting the red liquid out. The band played a short set, comprised of three songs: Coitus Divine, Fearless We Shall March, and We Despise your Roots.  

To be fair, Humanist played a very tight set that night, despite the technical difficulties, but I feel that they were a little out of place with the other bands that played that night. The band plays a slower version of Black Metal mixed with some Doom Metal elements, which I think went over some people’s heads. Still, in terms of their performance, they did a good job, and even angered some of the audience members with their onstage antics, so I guess that they did their job well. I enjoyed their performance.

Humanist Setlist:

1. Coitus Divine

2. Fearless We Shall March

3. We Despise Your Roots  

Afterwards came Crossover Thrash band Back in the Day, who once again got the crowd involved.

The band members are Pedro Chopz on Vocals, Ionex  and Shonshi on Guitars, Carlos Hammer on drums and Chesko on bass. They began their set with a cover of S.O.D.’s March Of The S.O.D.”, followed by an original titled "Taco".

Once again the mosh pit erupted and stage diving began, with people singing along to the songs. The performance was killer, specially the song "I’m a Shark" in which the vocalist put on a shark mask while throwing a dummy for the audience to beat up. Other songs that stood out were "Hounds of Hell" and "Pizza Junkie", which got the audience very motivated.

Back in the Day’s set proved to be very entertaining since not only were people involved in moshing, but they laughed at the band’s antics and jokes.

The band itself was pretty tight: the guitarists were very good, and Carlos the drummer did a great job of providing a solid backbone, along with the bass. By the end, it was clear that the crowd really enjoyed Back in the Day’s performance.

Back in the Day Setlist:

1. March of the S.O.D.

2. Taco

3. Balada #1

4. Hound from Hell

5. Reply Full of Napalm

6. Less Tattoos

7. Balada #2

8. Eradicator

9. Jaws Theme

10.I’m a Shark

11.Root Beer

12.Balada #3

13. Slam in the Door

14. Pizza Junkie

15. Back in the Day

16. Perro Muerto

Next up was Tavú; a local band that mixes elements of older Metal  styles with a modern Metal sound, with some Progressive Rock elements.

The band is composed of Marcos Reyes on Vocals, David McCloskey on Drums and Vocals, Joen Blanco on Guitar and Carlos "Yogi" Benitez on Bass, Backing Vocals. They began with the song "Egocentrista", but it was not until the song "Take a Bow" that the crowd began to react.

Still, the heat had began taking its toll on the audience who flocked to the bar area to get refreshments. This gave me a chance to take some pictures of the band while they performed. They played a nice set of songs which finished they with "Antipoesia", one of their better known tunes.

Tavú played a good set that night, and they did manage to get a positive reaction from the crowd, though not as much as No Muertos or Back in the Day.

The band had previously announced that they would record this performance and use the footage for an upcoming video. The band gave a good performance, specially drummer David McCloskey who played some interesting fills and some parts had odd time signatures.

Tavú Setlist:

1.  Egocentrista

2.  Take a Bow

3.  Sin Miedo

4. Horca

5. System Without Honor

6. No One

7. Antipoesia

Back when I first found out that Municipal Waste were scheduled to play a show in Puerto Rico, I knew that it would be a blast!

The Crossover Thrash band’s last effort “The Fatal Feast” was well recieved by both Metal and Hardcore fans on the island, so a Municipal Waste gig would be a definite success. In the end, my expectations were satisfied.

Municipal Waste took the stage and began their set with "Garbage", immediately followed by Unleash The Bastards. The band were in top form:  Tony Foresta  – Vocals, Ryan Waste – Guitar, Land Phil – Bass, Dave Witte – Drums.

Tony Foresta on Vocals gave an electrifying performance, while having a blast with the crowd as they slam danced and did several stage dives. Tony is a very  fun person both onstage and off. He motivated the crowd in a manner  that they really got into it. Foresta performed while being surrounded by people who stormed the stage in order to stage dive, and still managed to get in an awesome vocal performance that night.

Ryan Waste just shredded everyone with his customized Municipal Waste Guitar. Riffs kept coming and going, while Mr. Waste kept his wrists busy sending out palm-muted riff after palm-muted riff of pure Thrash Metal mayhem. He also played some nice impressive solos while being surrounded by kids eager to stage dive.

Land Phil on bass provided a nice back up for Ryan Waste, following the guitar riffs at the same speed, never missing a beat. He, like Ryan Waste, played the songs flawlessly, a testimony to his mastery of the instrument.

Finally the line-up was rounded out nicely by the ever-experienced Dave Witte on drums, a man also known for his work with bands like Human Remains and Burnt By the Sun. Mr. Witte gave a fist pumping, adrenaline fueled performance on the drums,   with awesome fills, and some jaw dropping speed parts. There will never be a dull moment when this man is playing the drums.

Overall, Municipal Waste played a total of 18 songs that night, including material from their new album The Fatal Feast :  “You’re Cut Off” as well as “ The Fatal Feast”. The crowd was constantly entertained during the band’s performance as they were either moshing or headbanging while singing along to the songs. The band ripped through their set with minimal talk,  and when they did stop to talk, it was Foresta encouraging people to get crazier. Once the band were done, I had the privilege of going backstage to meet them, and they were really cool to myself and the other fans.

They posed for a picture, then started a brief conversation with me. They are one of the coolest bands around, and they treat their fans with a lot of respect. The band also has a great sense of humor, something that sets them apart from other bands. All in all, it was a cool experience meeting Municipal Waste.

The event turned out to be a success, and showcased many genres such as Hardcore/Punk, Black Metal, Crossover Thrash and Thrash Metal. Many of the audience, including myself felt that the expectations were met. Local bands were able to present their musical offerings nicely, and each got in their own individual way, a positive reaction from the crowd.

Municipal Waste Setlist:

1.  Garbage/ Unleash The Bastards

2.  Mind Eraser

3.  You’re Cut Off

4.  Wolves

5. Thrashin’ Christ

6. Beer Pres / Authority

7. Acid

8. Black Ice

9. Wrong Answer

10. Intro/ The Fatal Feast

11. Divine Blasphemer

12. Toxic

13. Blood Drive / Accelerated

14. Headbanger / Terror

15. Black Prez

16. Repo

17. Sad Mag

18. Born 2 Party