The Thought Lot once again opened its doors to the blistering, forceful sounds of hard rock and extreme metal on Saturday.
It has become commonplace for a collection of metal talents, both local and abroad, to put on a show for the love of heavy music at The Thought Lot. The crowd may have been modest in size, but the sonic delivery of art is what mattered most.
“We love Shippensburg,” said Alex Conner, the trained vocalist for Maryland band Inoculum. “So few places support the arts anymore.”
Broken Carriage opened the night. Hailing from Waynesboro, Pennsylvania, the teenagers demonstrated their surprising technicality and power. The band falls in line with the sounds of Slayer and Hexen. They often transitioned from breakneck speeds to pumping sections that gave them momentum.
It was also surprising that everything they played was original material. With that, none of their songs sounded thrown together, and the teenagers knew what they were doing.
“What’s next for us is to keep practicing and getting better,” said lead singer of Broken Carriage, Shane Spencer.
If the band’s performance is any indication, then Broken Carriage is well on their way to being something great.
Several other bands took the small stage after Broken Carriage’s well-received performance. The stand-outs that followed were Inoculum and 1818.
Inoculum mixed things up. Although they have had trouble in the past landing a vocalist, the group eventually hired Conner as their front man. Patience paid off, because Conner’s range is unprecedented. The aggression of the band is amplified by the varying emotions Conner gave. From guttural growls to tenor melodies, the delivery was powerful every time. It was easy to tell that Inoculum was motivated to be its best with Conner’s assistance.
1818 closed the event in a spectacular fashion. Rather than continuing with normal metal music, they performed it acoustically. The group took to the stage without its drummer, Scott Magruder, and Cody Wright played acoustic guitar. Though the line-up was simple, it was still powerful. The band smiled throughout the performance because they knew that what they were doing was gold.
Lead singer Paul Saliga offered the aggression, while bassist and vocalist Whit Bender offered the soft, calming side. There was virtuosity throughout all of 1818, from Wright’s acoustic solos to Saliga’s dynamic vocals.