Review by: Greg Walkowiak
Photograpger: Greg Walkowiak
Video by Lawrence Rose of Stagnatevisionfilms
More show photos: HERE
Meet The Band
Vocals: Leigh Kakaty
Guitar: Davey Grahs
Guitar: Nick Fuelling
Drums: Chachi Riot
Bass: Matt DiRito
You could feel the anticipation at Wally’s Pub in Hampton NH for the first show of the Summer Headliner Tour with Pop Evil. Pop Evil is a band that mixes a few various genres into their own sound and they have stamped their ticket to be a viable contender. They are a bunch of hardnosed, highly diverse, rough and tough; get it done type of guys. The band calls Grand Rapids MI their home and now I understand where they get their determination from. Pop Evil’s new cd “Onyx” is all of the above and more. They put a stranglehold on the night and made a bold statement in doing so, they did what they do best, Rock. Pop Evil brought high energy Rock n’ Roll to Wally’s, it was floating through the air which literally attached itself to you and injected a dose of pure adrenaline into your veins.
They aggressively started the set off with the song “Flawed”, it kicked you right in the teeth. The forceful vocal work from Leigh Kakaty wraps the unbreakable sound around you and traps you within their clutches. He sings with raw emotion and defiance. His vocal range is infinite and volatile. He ignites the crowd with fluidity and gut wrenching lyrics that can only be defined as dazzling.
Davey Grahs (guitar) plays with rebellion. He seems to be the quiet one of the group, but his playing abilities make it impossible for him to be overlooked. His empowering style boils over the top and sets ablaze the entire stage. “Torn to Pieces” and “Goodbye My Friend” are two songs off “Onyx” that are very unlike one another, he makes it look easy to shift from a ballad style to an all-out assault style song with ease.
Not to be left out by any means is Nick Fuelling who is also on guitars. He powers his instrument with liveliness that is electrifying. “Deal with the Devil” is crushing and with every chord he hits, it sizzles. His prowess on stage fuels a seductive feeling that is undeniable and tantalizing.
The drummer, Chachi Riot is just that, a riot. He is totally insane on the kit and he hits the skins with dominance and uncontaminated power. In the song “Trenches”, it was even more noticeable to me that he is unbelievable on drums. That’s not to say he didn’t nail every song, he plays with fury and vigor that is a perfect fit for the band.
Last, but certainly not least is Matt DiRito on bass. I had the pleasure of speaking with him before the show and he is committed to everything that is Pop Evil. On stage he performs with vitality and seriousness. His playing is limitless and he strives to perfect his abilities. He designed a sound that overtakes the crowd which helps him thunder his way through their set. His booming bass lines are incorporated into the other band mate’s styles for a snug fit that will gain even more momentum within the realm of loud rock.
At the end of the night you are left with one incredible experience. Pop Evil is a band that is driven to excellence. They take you on a ride that speeds out of control then stops right before impact. They balance you along a ledge and keep you dangling. Their diverse talents are exactly what you want from a band; they generate a collaborative effort that is extraordinary in the studio and on stage.
Broken and Betrayed
Deal with the Devil
100 in a 55
Torn to Pieces
Goodbye My Friend
Somebody Like You
Monster You Made Me