by Mike Breen
Year-old Cincinnati Rock crew release remarkably accomplished debut album
Riff-tastic Cincinnati Hard Rock foursome Lift the Medium has only been a band for a year, but you wouldn’t know it listening to its accomplished debut full-length, Mastermind. The band celebrates the release of its rock-solid album with a show Saturday at MVP Bar & Grill in Silverton. The 9 p.m. show also features performances by Livid and Life After This. Admission is $10; the first 50 fans through the door score a free copy of Mastermind.
Though a relatively new band, Lift the Medium’s members have extensive experience; singer/guitarist Joey Vasselet spent time in Rootbound, a melodic band that craftily incorporated influences from several different eras of Hard Rock, while bassist Justin Kennedy, singer/drummer Jake Bartone and singer/guitarist Joe Bartone were a part of Atlantis Becoming, a group known for its exploratory, progressive approach. The band members’ backgrounds give a good sense of Lift the Medium’s style. The songs on Mastermind are craftily structured — the winding riffs and rhythms are constantly in motion, subtly recalling the more exploratory sounds of Atlantis Becoming. But there’s no meandering — every movement is in service to the song, resulting in a more passionate and pointed melodic impact. There is also a lot of diversity throughout Mastermind, but it’s molded into a cohesive and contemporary sound the group can call its own. Lift the Medium can at times remind you of Grunge-era superstars like Alice in Chains or Soundgarden, but flashes of the classic ’70s/’80s Hard Rock/Metal perfected by the likes Aerosmith, Ozzy Osbourne or Iron Maiden also bubble to the surface. The delicately ingrained Prog touches lightly recall groups like Tool, but Mastermind also sounds like it would be perfectly at home on Rock radio next to contemporary acts like Shinedown and Seether. The production on Mastermind is remarkably crisp and muscular, making it even more radio-ready. Get Band email for free at ReverbNation.comIt’s no easy feat to incorporate such a variety of styles without sounding like Rock tourists/time travelers, but Lift the Medium’s sharp songwriting skills and impeccable chops help bring everything together without sacrificing its own distinct personality, allowing the variance to keep things sonically interesting from start to finish, but never allowing it to overshadow the strength of the songwriting. Cincinnati’s Rock radio stations (and likeminded ones across the country) should be all over Mastermind. It’s a crowd-pleaser that works on numerous levels. Find more info about Lift the Medium (and hear some more song samples) here.
Steel Panther offers a party for music lovers who are missing (or missed out on) ’80s Hair Metal
1 Comment · Wednesday, December 12, 2012
The guys in Steel Panther have a purpose. And that purpose is to make ’80s Metal popular again. “Our whole mission is to bring Heavy
Metal back,” singer Michael Starr declares.
1 Comment · Tuesday, March 9, 2010
In addition to our "cover boys" this week, The Lions Rampant, three other local acts will be out in the clubs this weekend hosting release parties for their latest recording projects: Progressive/Hard Rock band Livid Friday at Silverton's Play By Play Cafe, Bluegrass trio The Tadcasters Friday at Arnold's Bar and Grill downtown and Metal band Behead the Tyrant Saturday at Harvey's in Price Hill (the old Blue Note). Come out and support local original music.