Archive for October, 2011

TABERAH – THE LIGHT OF WHICH I DREAM album review

Posted in Records on October 27, 2011 by Cameron Cooper

Tasmanian Power Metallers Taberah have been gigging for a while now, and have crafted a solid, entertaining live show. However, in their six year life span the band haven’t committed much in the way of recordings. So how does the quintet hold up on their debut full length, The Light of Which I Dream?

The album finds itself in an interesting position, full of ear-stomping, straightforward riffs, but certainly not without a few deviations to the norm. Thankfully, from the effects-laden vocals to finger-snapping beats, these elements fit in nicely with the band’s overall power metal vibe. The same can be said for the album intro and the few intervals that are scattered throughout the album. Including these, a band always runs the risk of ruining the flow of the album, however Taberah have ensured that these moments don’t overstay their welcome.

As the album continues, the rock n’ roll influence becomes more apparent. Whilst Taberah have done a good job of meshing their influences – which seem to run from The Darkness to Helloween – occasionally a lead will appear straight out of nowhere, and disappear just as quickly, clashing with the rest of what is going on.

However, at other times it works great, as “Stormchild” bridging the sonic gap between Danger Danger and Saxon, with lyrics to match. This track is perhaps the highlight of the album, from an arena-worthy chorus, to a blistering solo. Is that a bird whistle?

Perhaps the only weak song on the album comes in the form of a ballad, “The Ballad of Ruby Joy”. The song starts out decent enough, and wears its Queen influence on its sleeve, but doesn’t have enough going on to warrant its length. All is not lost, however, as the track very nicely segues into the album’s title track, which seems to sum up all the strong elements of the album. But the band isn’t finished yet, and the final two tracks – the epics “Requiem Of The Damned” and “The Reaper” take us out nicely.

The Light of Which I Dream is a phenomenal effort for a band of such young musicians. Solid playing on behalf of all the members has ensured everyone knows exactly what the band is about, and frontman Jono Barwick’s vocals sound like the happy medium between metal master and humble pub rocker. Thanks to the fun quirks and lyrical subjects that range from battles to broads, the album does too.

It isn’t uncommon for a band to take on a number of styles, place them side by side and call it a day, but Taberah have gone a step further, and created something wholly original.

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TABERAH Album Launch – The Valve 7/10/11

Posted in Shows on October 17, 2011 by Cameron Cooper

After a well deserved break earlier this year, promoter Dave Balfour has out done himself with an absolutely stellar line-up at The Valve in Tempe. For four rock-solid hours, the proudly pokies-free venue was transformed into the Tempe Thunderdome.

Opening the night was Crimzon Lake, NWOBHM alumni Paul Mario Day’s latest music offering. A loud, fat mix of 70s Brit-Rock and True Metal saw the band proving they were far from past their prime, with Day channelling his younger self in stage presence only, and displaying a matured and unrelenting set of pipes. Mark Middleton (Bass) and Alax Sazdanoff (Drums) provided a hard hitting and tight rhythm section, allowing Danny Jackson’s locomotive riffs and wailing guitar solos to shine. Curiously, the band played a lot of material not actually featured on their debut EP, instead showcasing a much heavier side.

Next up were Newcastle thrashers Sabretung. After some technical difficulties resulted in a late start, the four piece ploughed through a juggernaut of heavy-as-hell, savage numbers. Not content with the lack of crowd participation, frontman Doug Murray made numerous attempts to coax the crowd into becoming much more active. “Come on up the front, that is where headbanging is supposed to happen.”

When pleasantries failed, Murray jumped down from the stage and physically placed a number of us up the front of the stage. In doing so, he reminded us all that we were at a FUCKING METAL show, and exactly why local gigs, were this kind of thing can still happen, are some of the best.

The bluntly-named Metal proved a crowd pleaser, with all singing along to their would-be anthems. The stage presence was there and then some, but the band’s set felt incomplete, something missing from the overall performance. Whether it was the tired vocals or simply the band not playing tight enough I’m not sure, but it stopped the band from achieving their full potential.

Head-liners Taberah managed to steal the show, bringing their blend of glam rock theatrics and power metal melodies to Sydney for the second or third time in their six year existence. Complete with duel guitar solos, as well as multiple and intricate progressions, the group displayed considerable development from their earlier days as a more straightforward metal outfit.

The band has slugged it out in the pubs of Tasmania for some time, with only frontman Jono Barwick and drummer Tom Brockman remaining of the original line-up. However, the current incarnation of the band is certainly their strongest, with the band wearing their experience on their sleeve. Combining flawless musicianship and a down-to-earth, playful attitude, Taberah were firing at full force. A perfect warning shot to fans both old and new of what to expect as the band’s strangle-hold on Aussie metal continues to tighten.