Video: Mike Portnoy Performs Dream Theater, Judas Priest, Slayer And More On A Pokemon Drum Kit

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Whenever Mike Portnoy teams up with Loudwire for a video, you know it’s going to be good. Last year he performed classic songs on a child’s Hello Kitty drum kit, and the video now has over three million views. Mike was recently invited back to try his skills on a larger Pokemon drum kit, and the hilarious video has finally made it’s way online. Continue reading

Verse Vica – Endeavor

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By now there is an over saturation of progressive/tech metal bands on the market. With a rich diversity of bands under the banner with a wide range of sounds and styles, it is definitely a genre in rude health, thus as a result there is seemingly a conveyor belt presenting more and more by the minute. Asheville, North Carolina’s Verse Vica are one of the latest crop of acts who have to stand out from the herd. Luckily there is evidence of something special about them.

Although debut album Endeavor (Independent) doesn’t show innovation in leaps and bounds, it does show a band with a youthful and energetic outlook yet with heads wiser than their years. Album opener ‘Airyth’ has a luscious, mellow tone which gradually builds with a little more power before ‘Cities 1: Cerulean’ kicks straight away with ferocity. Throughout this marries huge melodies with splatters of guttural growls and dynamic shifts in pace.

There is a sign of weakness here and the vocals of Spencer Brunkhorst are bit of a dampener, proving one dimensional during the growled passages and a little lacklustre at times in the singing when it should prove more commanding.

Tech metal is never going to be a sub genre which will never be considered cool, and Pokemon references (Cerulean and Saffron) are hardly going to help Verse Vica shake the geeky tag. But in a sub genre which is all about technique, these newbies have it in abundance.

Besides who doesn’t love Pokemon anyway?

 

8.0/10

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CHRIS TIPPELL