Something Something Ashes of a Phoenix

Metaphors are a fun way to open up some piece of writing. I could go into the symbolism of a Phoenix for James or the lineup tonight for Down by Law being from the punkrockacademyfightsong album, their third and arguably most known album. No matter how I introduce it, the night was an awesome mix of punk rock with two more from out of town, Guilty By Associate from Vegas and Undefined from Prescott. Everyone brought the energy for this Tuesday night show.

Energy is probably the thing that James brings most to the stage, and tonight was the debut of his new band, Becoming Legends. Assembled with other local talent including Marty from LightSpeedGo, Aaron from First or Last, and Jared from Without Hero. These five guys plus Benny make up an awesome sounding band, with that blend of pop punk that James has always loved since I’ve known him. This may be the best band I’ve seen James perform in.

Doing double duty, Aaron and First or Last were next. The other band of local dudes this night brought a great set. You couldn’t even tell that Aaron might be tired, although I swear he barely moved two feet from the first set to this one. With this band, you get a vocalist out of every person too. Chris on drums took lead on a song or two, Dave on most, and Aaron on a couple too. These guys are up and coming in the punk scene making themselves more known by the day.

Following them was another awesome currently Prescott band, Undefined. The last couple months there has been some great music coming from just north of Phoenix, including C:28. Undefined is no different, with their lead vocalist all about the stage. This is a harder punk, in a similar vein as a Face to Face or Pennywise, with metal influence. James Rivas got up later in the set, shared the stage and microphone for two songs. These guys are fantastic.

I was looking forward to the next band, Guilty By Association, as I haven’t seen them live since the show in Vegas with the Bollweevils the Monday night of Punk Rock Bowling 2015. It’s been a little longer since they’ve played Phoenix too. These guys have more of a skate punk sound, like Strung Out or Pulley. They are an awesome band going on fifteen years this year too. I don’t get to see enough, so hopefully my annual trip to Punk Rock Bowling this year will include catching them.

I’ll be honest, I haven’t listened to a lot of Down by Law so most of what I heard was new to me. They are a lot of fun, with some history to them as I looked into them before the show. Dave Smalley, I have familiarity with from ALL and Dag Nasty too. They were fun to watch, and just listening to Dave between songs showed how much appreciation they have for playing music. He touched on respecting everyone’s opinions, including the ones you don’t agree with, just be kind to each other and have fun. These guys played a great set to close out the night. It was one of those shows you wish you didn’t remember you had work the next morning after.

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