Show Review: Bermuda, Monsters and Future 1983

by Jack Diablo

Venue: Shantytown Pub
Date: August 12, 2009
The rain came down in buckets, flooding the streets while claps of thunder cautioned of imminent lightning, but it didn’t stop people from packing into Shantytown for an evening of amazing progressive rock.
Kicking things off was the Fernandina/Jax Beach trio Future 1983 with guitarist Danny Strickland’s intensely technical shredding and Andrew Wood’s equally impressive bass riffs. Jaws literally dropped as Strickland furiously fingered frets at full-tilt, rivaling the lightning outside in both intensity and speed. When faces weren’t being melted by the guitar work, drummer Elon Hiers set the tempo for jazzy interludes, simultaneously providing some much-needed downtime for the group and building anticipation for the next onslaught.
The next band Monsters, from West Palm, is a hard band to find on the internet. I like to go back and listen to these bands again for a quick reminder, but with a name like that it’s nearly impossible to track them down as there are over 1000 bands that come up when you search MySpace for the word “monsters.” Luckily I did find them and was able to happily revisit there synth-driven experimental rock. At times their music sounds like the soundtrack to Mega Man with live drums. They played in virtual darkness with only a strobing diamond shaped light projected against the back wall to illuminate their dynamic performance. Add handmade merch to the mix and you have a band I hope to hear from again as soon as possible.
St. Augustine’s Bermuda is post-rock with vocals. Featuring Tyler from Antarctic on loan pulling drum duty, they brought the proverbial thunder. Guitarist and singer Jack delivered a lady-pleasing swagger with vocals that at times had that lethargic, dreaminess of Deerhunter and at others came off with the falsetto of Cedric Bixler-Zavala. An interesting combination to be sure.
Oh yeah, then Buff Clout played, but I’ve said enough about them already.