Great Scott in Allston, MA is a personal favorite venue of mine in the Boston area. Right by the T, tons of nearby restaurants for a quick dinner, easy street parking unless it happens to be snowing, and of course, the intimate venue. Tonight helped solidify my feelings on the venue as Black Elm, Vattnet Viskar, and The Atlas Moth brought their best even in the middle of the week. Given the late start time (9PM), I was able to toss back a giant bowl of Japanese Ramen noodles before entering Great Scott for what promised to be a great show.
Black Elm kicked off the night dishing out some groovy hardcore. The band received a successful response from the crowd that showed up “early” to catch the openers. Regardless if they were up front, at the bar getting a beer, or purchasing merch, everyone applauded their approval at the end of each song and at the close of the set.
Vattnet Viskar was the band I was most excited to see as I have not seen them in almost five years and with their new material being played live. The New Hampshire foursome brought their special blend of atmospheric black metal and post-metal to the Allston crowd in full force. For fans of the latest album, Settler, the majority of the set was of new material. Such songs included: ‘Dawnlands’ , ‘Yearn’ , ‘Impact’ , and closer, ‘Coldwar’. The sheer energy on stage for each song from these guys was truly inspiring. A lot of heavy bands today just do not seem to understand the importance of giving the audience a show. Hell more than a show, an experience. Vattnet Viskar provided quite the experience at Great Scott on this evening so I ensured a t-shirt and a patch was purchased.
Finally it was time for the headliners, The Atlas Moth, to provide their own breed of post-metal to the eager fans. Complete with green lasers and mesmerizing light show, the Chicago natives put on quite a show that certainly ended the night on a high note. The set list was a solid mix of new and old for the group as the Allston crowd received three tracks from An Ache for the Distance and two from The Old Believer. Off of those albums we heard tracks such as: ‘Holes in the Desert’ , ‘Perpetual Generations’ , ‘The Sea Beyond’ , and closing out the night, ‘Blood Will Tell’. Additionally, ‘The 6th Passenger is Death’ and ‘Hope for Atlantis’ were also tossed into the mix. One of the highlights of the night was when David Kush called on a vote for either a cover song or a new song. The crowd was almost unanimous in voting for a cover. David and the rest of The Atlas Moth busted out a memorable rendition of Failure‘s ‘Golden’. There was truly something for everyone during the band’s set!
Even though the overall turnout for the show was not one of the strongest I have witnessed at Great Scott, these three bands came together and put on a great show. I am certainly looking forward to catching Black Elm once again, potentially on a bill with some better fitting bands for them, as well as Vattnet Viskar and The Atlas Moth. And for those nearby to the Boston area and have not had a chance to attend a show at Great Scott, I highly encourage you take the Green Line B train up to the Harvard Ave stop and give them a try.
WORDS BY TIM LEDIN