While an arena show will undoubtedly amaze any concert goer, there is truly no greater feeling than when a band can command a small, yet riled crowd. No clearer example of this can be described than the first D.R.U.G.S. show which took place last night in Pontiac, Michigan. After months of anticipation buildup thanks to a strong online presence, the group featuring Craig Owens, Matt Good, Aaron Stern, Adam Russell, and Nick Martin, finally gave fans a glance into a world of sound they’ve only recently unveiled through “If You Think This Song Is About You, It Probably Is.” UTG Photographer Melanie Hodgins was on hand for last night’s festivities and her best shots can be found below:
First up for the night was the live debut of The Bronze Way (Ex Forever In A Day). Blending arena rock ready licks with lyricism still firmly planted in the pop rock world, this act is going places. Mark our words.
Following The Bronze Way was a less than impressive local act who we’d like to at least give recognition, but can’t due to their lack of mentioning their name while on stage. Note to bands hoping for exposure: ALWAYS TELL THE CROWD WHO YOU ARE. Regardless, that band was followed by the final local talent of the evening, Atavan. Having cut their teeth over the past few years with a rigorous touring schedule, this pop rock driven act was the first of the night to shake the crowd of their stiff, Michigan winter-based, apathy towards the evening and get feet moving. A perfect precursor to what would follow:
As the final upbeat tones of Atavan’s set faded into the evening, the time was quickly approaching for D.R.U.G.S. first public performance. The lights went out only momentarily and an almost blinding amount of stage lighting hit the audience as members Craig Owens, Nick Martin, Aaron Stern, Matt Good, and Adam Russell made their way to the stage. Kicking things off with the recently unearthed “Thermacare,” the band launched into an entire set of material no one else in the room had ever heard (except for the closer, “IF You Think This song Is About You, It Probably Is) and blew everyone away. Less than a minute into the first “new” song the crowd snapped and dancing, moshing, and even attempted crowdsurfing ensued. Owens, being the great frontman he is, held the audience in the palm of his hand with each and every line while the the rest of the band created a sound they had done individually. Heavy than expected, but also full of hooks and “whoa-ohs” to keep you coming back for more. If you have a chance, see this band. They are the real deal and, in one performance, shot WAY up our most anticipated of 2011.