The Weeping Willow - Impale Album Release Gig Review
Label: The Weeping Willow
Reviewer: Carmina Khairallah - 2013-02-16
Highlights: The band was made out of professionals, delivering a very heavy yet catchy sound
Metal events are growing rather scarce in Lebanon, and when the well-known Death Metal band The Weeping Willow announced the release party of their 4th record Impale, all the fans of the genre were overjoyed. But with the current disappearance of all past Metal venues, the one where the concert took place left everyone puzzled: Yukunkun, a pub in Jemmayze, area full of pubs, bars, and pop music.
That didn’t affect the enthusiasm of the true Metalheads yearning for something good to grab on to. Some other things, though, did. First of all, the event was strictly 18+, which is something this community really isn’t used to. Secondly, the concert was announced to start at 10. That would be relatively fine… if it didn’t actually start at 11:30. For some, that isn’t a problem, but for those coming from far outside Beirut, it can be a serious drawback.
The venue itself was good: relatively big in size, with a stage wide enough for the band to be comfortable and an area in front of it wide enough for their fans to show their appreciation. As for those who would rather sit down, they could enjoy the few couches set apart from the main area and close to the bar.
At first, the attendees were entertained with some playback Metal music that got them all hyped up, although most of them were outside smoking. They were numerous enough to fill about half of the location, but quite few regarding the popularity of the performing band. One very inappropriate detail that caused discomfort to many was the rapidly flashing bright lights, common in night clubs but unexpected at such an event. One can never highlight quite enough how risky such things can be without a proper warning, especially to people with epilepsy and such. Regardless, let’s move on to the concert itself.
The sound was pretty muffled, but rather clean, and it showed that the band was made out of professionals, delivering a very heavy yet catchy sound, with a good performance accompanying it. Each member seemed to know exactly what they were doing, and were very good at it. The crowd seemed satisfied, although their reactions were a bit “off”: most of them were just standing there, and “fits” of headbanging and moshing would only last about 10 to 20 seconds in a row. As for front man Geno Machoulian’s interaction with the crowd, it was just enough for such a gig.
One last disappointment though was the length of the concert: after about 45 minutes, fans were asking each other if it was possible that it was already over. The band having played everything they had to - ie the songs from their new album - , it was, but attendees could enjoy playback Metal music for a while longer. A shout-out would be appropriate to the person in charge of the choice of playback songs, as they were varied and enjoyable.
In short, it was a very good event, despite a few setbacks. Although, the most important thing was the release of yet another great local Metal release, proving once again that us Lebanese have enough Metal in our blood. The most disappointing thing though was the number of attendees whom I had expected would be quite more numerous. But in the end, quality counts more than quantity and those who were there made the best out of it. Cheers to Weeping Willow, looking forward to hearing more from them in the near future.