Vaeda at Village Pub South, June 28
By Radio J
Vaeda, a unique, three-piece band consisting of Ian Lear-Nickum (guitarist/vocals), Aristotle Dreher (bass) and Oliver Williams (drums), played at the Village Pub South in Amityville on June 28.
The band walked out to a spacey intro reminiscent of something off a Pink Floyd or Failure album. Their music is very hard to describe, but I like to think of them as a mad scientist's creation. They have different elements of rock twisted into this experimental style, yet they're reminiscent of Pink Floyd, Foo Fighters and Filter.
And the band members are as unique as their sound. Dreher is not hard to miss, as he's tall with a bushy hairstyle with a streak of gold in the middle and easily stands out in a crowd. When he started playing his bass, he held it like a machine gun, similar to Jeff Romano from the band S.T.E.M. He then proceeded to hold his bass as if it were a keyboard. He never stands still and was bouncing off the walls, literally. He had amazing stage presence.
Williams is like an uncontrollable machine, moving at a rapid pace. He has a random sense of humor - mid-set he broke into song, singing, "Ow, my head" repeatedly, apparently a random, in joke for the band.
Lear-Nickum is the mysterious front man, whose face was covered with a curtain of black and red. His guitar poured out amazing riffs, one after the next. His vocals were on point. You can definitely hear Dave Grohl and Richard Patrick crawling out of his vocal chords, mixed with his own original style.
Before hearing this band, I was nervous, thinking they might be another band with that whiney, emo sound. I was so relieved that I was wrong. With intense melodies and awesome vocal harmonies in tunes such as "All for You" and "Breath," it's impossible to turn away. And the spacey intro mentioned earlier happens to be a part of a song called "Asleep at the Wheel." I've never heard these guys before, yet I was moving my head and singing along as if I've seen them play 1,000 times.
At one point, they started playing a trippy, poppy riff with a steady drum beat, and all of a sudden Lear-Nickum started singing the opening line to Alice in Chains' "Man in the Box." I was showing my age when I moved up to the front and started singing along, while it looked like everyone else was lost trying to figure out what song they were playing. And they made that cover their own. Midway through the song, without warning, they went right into Nine Inch Nails' "The Hand That Feeds." Before you knew it, they switched right back to Alice in Chains and finished it up.
I was very impressed by what I heard. I loved the participation from their fans. They were singing along to every word. This band belongs on the road playing to different crowds. They already played at this year's Warped Tour.
The band will be releasing their next CD, Unsafe at Any Speed, very soon. You can hear a couple of their new songs from the CD at myspace.com/vaeda. If you're looking for a band that stands out and will bring something different to the table, then Vaeda is it.
Published August 22, 2008
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