Showing posts with label Bruce Lamont. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bruce Lamont. Show all posts

Thursday, January 4, 2018

PHOTO RECAP: YAKUZA Chicago Sax Metal Favorites Play Empty Bottle 25th Anniversary Show 12/22/17

It was our great pleasure to catch YAKUZA in concert once again on December 22, 2017. Of course it's fitting they would be in on The Empty Bottle's year long 25th Anniversary Concert Series #EB25, as Yakuza's Vocalist and saxophonist Bruce Lamont is also a longtime fixture behind the bar at EB. 

It was especially sweet to hear Helen Money, “A classical-cellist-turned-avant-metal virtuoso", sit in with them!

Yakuza has been a favorite of mine for years, ever since another Bruce, former priest turned bartender/musician, Bruce (Neal) turned me on to the band when we worked at Facets Multimedia together. 

I was bemoaning the lack of a "Pandora-like" setting that could find bands by weird genre key words like (my actual quote) "heavy metal sax"... when Bruce N. laughed and said, do you know Yakuza? I'd already photographed another of Lamont's bands, Led Zeppelin cover band, LZ2, but hadn't heard of Yakuza at the time. They may never gain huge commercial success, but they have a fervent following and we catch them live every chance we can. They're dissonant, loud, haunting and unlike any other metal band I've experienced. It may be an acquired taste for more traditional headbangers, but theirs is a compelling sound I can't get enough of.

Check out my full set of YAKUZA live show shots in the slide show here and more favorites embedded below. 

I'm also including a sweet video of their whole show from that night via Wwatchthemwatchyou's YouTube Channel:

In another odd coincidence, I had a talk with the guy taping the show, and we discovered we were both frequent tapers at Dead Shows "back in the day". Just goes to show, a passion for live music transcends genres. Crank this one up! 

Via Empty Bottle:
Chicago’s YAKUZA is no stranger to the Empty Bottle stage. Well-known throughout the Chicago metal scene for incorporating jazz and world music elements, they’re basically a genre of their own. Vocalist and saxophonist BRUCE LAMONT notes influencers ranging from PINK FLOYD to GEORGE ORWELL and Ethiopian music. 

Formed in 1999, their debut album Amount to Nothing received critical acclaim from the likes of Terrorizer and Chicago Sun Times. They’ve released a boatload of boundary-crushing albums since and are still rocking as wildly as ever. The four-piece has long shown proclivities for music beyond metal and it's their willingness to incorporate these many and varied influences that sets them apart from their peers, continually pushing the envelope with an adventurousness and experimentation we've come to expect. YAKUZA has carved an unchallenged niche in the metal genre and we’re are excited to have them back for our unforgettable #EB25 anniversary series.

Other Musicians That Night:
Click the links for our photo features.

ALISON CHESLEY aka HELEN MONEY is a cellist who has become known for her adventurous sound, bold compositions, and compelling stage performance. Called “A classical-cellist-turned-avant-metal virtuoso" by the Boston Phoenix, CHESLEY channels her sensibilities and experience as a rock musician through a classical instrument, altering both genres without apology. She has played on over 150 albums with artists such as Disturbed, Bob Mould, Mono, Anthrax, Broken Social Scene, Russian Circles, and Archer Prewitt among others.

Support tonight comes from the one and only SANFORD PARKER. These days, if it’s metal and recorded in Chicago, chances are SANFORD PARKER was at the mixing board. His own bands, MINSK and BURIED AT SEA are super killer as well. We’re honored to witness a master at this craft this evening. Pay close attention and maybe you’ll learn a thing or two!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

INCOMING: Chi, IL Live Shows on Our Radar Thurs-Sunday 4/4-7 #originalphotos #originalbandinterview

March Fourth This Friday at Martyr's (21+) 
Portland's circus punk marching band


Spring means music in Chi-town and the excellent shows are pouring into town.   Here's a short list of our top picks.

*We've been giving you the heads up about most of these over at our FB page and Twitter feed for weeks if not months in some cases.   If you still haven't gotten tickets, get outta the house and go already.  

As always, check out ChiIL Live Shows like we vote in Chi, IL...early and often.   We have loads of original content band interviews, live show shots, tour news, and giveaways.

Thursday 4/4

Mutts Object Permanance album release @ Hideout (21+)

Paper Thick Walls open

Mutts CD Release Party!


Paper Thick Walls

Thu, April 4, 2013

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

The Hideout

Chicago, IL


When Flying Feels Like Falling (all ages) These Chi-town punk kin have a string of upcoming gigs here.   They may still be in high school, but these alums of Girls Rock! Chicago already have some major fest cred & battle of the bands wins under their belts.

THU APR 4, 2013 - 7:00 PM

When Flying Feels Like Falling

Stop The Silence!
with Cellar Rats, Seraphina Mushroom Jello Nelson, Tocsin, The Hanging Garden, Flagass
Greenhouse Theater
2257 N. Lincoln Chicago (near the Fullerton Brownline stop)
Chicago, IL
Local bands include... 

Seraphina Mushroom Jello Nelson 
The Hanging Garden 
Cellar Rats- 
When Flying Feels Like Falling- 

Please bring donations, anything is appreciated, all of the money will be going to RVA. 

*Greenhouse Theater has a cash bar for this event: food, drinks, whatever.* 

All ages! 

According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics: 

-Every 2 minutes someone is sexually assaulted in the U.S. 
-54% of rapes/sexual assaults are not reported to the police 
-Out of every 100 rapes, 46 get reported to the police, 
12 lead to an arrest, 9 get prosecuted, 5 lead to a felony conviction, and only 3 rapists will ever spend a single day in jail. 
-97% of rapists walk free. 
Speak up against Rape Culture! 

Friday 4/5

March Fourth Punk Rock Marching Band at Martyr's
Click the link to check out full details on the show along with ChiIL Live Shows' original content--March Fourth HD videos and live show shots.

Bright White at Reggies (support for Makeshift Prodigy)

Chicago post-punk group The Bright White (confirmed for Lollapalooza) will open for Makeshift Prodigy at Reggie's Rock Club, 2105 S. State St, on Friday, April 5. Show is 7PM, ages 17+ and $12-$15.  Click here for tickets.

Anthrax at House of Blues

Also recommended Friday:
Bailiff at Subterranean
The Lauren Wolf Band at The Metro

Saturday 4/6

Wovenhand / Wrekmeister Harmonies / Bruce

Lamont & Eric Chaleff
Empty Bottle

Todd Kessler and Alexis Marceaux, both alums of NBC's The Voice, will be playing a show together at Tonic Room on Saturday, April 6.

Todd Kessler and his band the New Folk headline with Alexis Marceaux (also featured on HBO's Treme) and her band, Alexis & the Samurai, as direct support. Mike Mangione & the Union will open the show.

Reverend Peytons Big Damn Band with Jimbo Mathus and Alvin Youngblood Hart
Sat. 04/06 | 8:00PM @ Cubby Bear

Sunday 4/7

Friday, June 15, 2012

Bruce Lamont-Clark Kent of The Metal World (Upcoming Gigs)

 LZ2 at HOB Chicago January 2012

Chicago's own Bruce Lamont is Fearless Frontman by night, and Mild Mannered Mixologist....also by night.   

By day you're likely to find him at a Sox game.

Check out his metal magic with Yakuza, Bloodiest, A Corporate Death, Solo and even Led Zeppelin 2.

His costume (or lack thereof) was so complete with his transformation to Robert Plant, that I didn't even recognize him when I shot their set at Do Division last year!   

It wasn't till some music industry friends clued me in that I went back and checked out the shots and realized it was true!  


Check out our original photo filled coverage from LZ2's sold out January gig at House of Blues Chicago by clicking right here.

He's got a superman worthy summer schedule too.   Catch him live: 

Led Zeppelin 2--Tomorrow-Saturday, 6/16/12
South Side Chi-Town in Merrionette Park
Buy tickets:
Only $5!!

Led Zeppelin 2 tore it up for sold out shows from Chicago to Texas earlier this year, and now they're coming back for more! 
Timeout New York: "Led Zeppelin 2 is far and away the best Zep band around."
Dallas Observer: "...the closest thing to seeing the real Led Zeppelin."
Atlanta's Backstage Beat: ": “...such authentic raw flair, the entire crowd bought it, no questions lingering… It was nasty… hard to believe how balls out fantastic they are."

Visit for more info!

    • Bloodiest at Lincoln Hall--Saturday, June 23, 2012 9pm

  • Yes, the rumors are true -- this will be be Del Rey's last* real headlining show before going on an extended hiatus.

  • After spending the better part of 15 years as one of Chicago's most formidable space-art-math-post-whatever-rock outfits, the band will be taking a break of unknown duration.

  • So come on out and bask in the cosmic soundscapes and epic odysseys that Del Rey has made its trademark while you still can. We'll also be previewing some material from a yet-to-be-released new recording that's currently in the works.

  • We're very honored to be sharing this momentous occasion with Bloodiest (metal-meets-psychedelia-via-early-AmRep) and Ken Camden (spaced-out guitar explorations).

  • (* The band reserves the right to get back together whenever it damn well pleases, thank you very much.)


We're still editing, but we will have loads of live video and stills from the last Bloodiest Empty Bottle show up in the near future.   Live, they lead the listeners on a haunting, eerie and intense journey.   Their sound is primal, heavy, meditative and entirely compelling.   This music resonates on the molecular level.   Go.  


As fun and excellent as LZ2 is, Yakuza is the real deal!   They're honestly
one of my favorite local bands, and I see and review and shoot a LOT of bands.  What they are doing is unique and addictive.   I can't remember who turned me on to their stuff back in the day.  I was saying how much I adore sax with a heavier edge and how there should be a setting on Pandora to search out new/similar bands for punk/metal with sax, when my friend said, you've gotta check out Yakuza, then.   I caught them at a rare metal show at The Hideout where Bruce was doing the hair band/head bang thing and got his hair wrapped around and stuck on the strands of Christmas lights.   He stoically finished the song, then got a little help from his friends to get free.   I was hooked.   Since then we've seen & shot stills at their shows numerous times all over town--most recently at Reggie's.   Their music is amazing, and doubly so live.

I was telling this friend that I only half jokingly told my young kids they should grow up and make mama proud by learning the sax and forming a punk/metal band.   My grandfather played and so did my little sister.   So far, the 9 year old's rocking the guitar and my 11 year old son's learning drums.   

Weirdly enough, though, I recently did a video interview with the drummer, Alexei from Prong, who said he played sax, too.   And the same scenario happened in our video interview with the band,  The Royal Baths.   Their drummer also plays sax.  His parents flew in for their Empty Bottle Show and outed him.....much to the surprise of his bandmates, who only knew him as a drummer.  Not that I ever ask that as an interview just came up in conversation.  

So stoked we have Yakuza to break the sound barrier and pave the way for more avant-garde metal!

Help Locally--Yakuza Doc Kickstarter Campaign needs a serious kick in the ass!!   Pony up--this will be one for the archives and you can say YOU made it happen.   Click here for full kickstarter details.   Going till 6/23.   

local filmmaker Justin Baron has been working off and on for almost a decade on a documentary about local metal group Yakuza, whose integration of jazzlike elements—front man Bruce Lamont plays a variety of saxophones—has made them a tough sell for mainstream metal audiences. The archetypal "band's band," they seem to have made fans out of half the metal musicians in the world, but without earning widespread popularity.
"I just feel called to do this," Baron explains, "and whatever that means for me, I have to incur the cost of that life decision to make this happen, you know?" He's currently putting the finishing touches on the doc, entitled Be That as It May: Yakuza's Seismic Consequence; it combines footage of the group in the studio recording 2010's Of Seismic Consequence (Profound Lore), live clips, and interviews with high-profile Yakuza fans, among them Greg Kot, Jim DeRogatis, modern-jazz heavyweight Ken Vandermark, and members of Mastodon, Celtic Frost, Neurosis, Municipal Waste, and more. 
A couple weeks ago Baron launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise $10,500, hoping to pay for the editing, postproduction, manufacturing, and distribution of the film. The campaign runs till Sat 6/23, and incentives range from a thank-you e-mail from Baron (for a $5 donation) to one of Lamont's saxes (for $3,500). Baron says all the work he's put into the movie so far has been worth it, just for the experiences he's had in the burgeoning Chicago metal scene. "There's something going on right now, and Yakuza is definitely a big part of that," he says. "I just sort of felt like Charles Peterson from the 90s Sub Pop grunge era." 

ChiIL Live Shows past coverage:

Scott Kelly (Neurosis), Bruce Lamont (Yakuza) & Winters in Osaka at Empty Bottle-Show Photos/Metal 

Macabre-*Yakuza-Novembers Doom-*A Corporate Death (show photos/metal) 

*also Bruce Lamont

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