When Indie Network of Sound (INoS) caught wind that the traveling Psycho Road Show – the Psycho Las Vegas Festival affiliated tour - was headed to Austin, Texas, we began to formulate a game plan to tackle this beast of a show. Eight ferocious bands bringing Metal and Psych Rock to our hometown, what else could we ask for? The answer was, Barracuda on 7th Street being the host of this event. This is an INoS favorite spot. We have spent endless nights at this venue rockin’ with some of the best that live music has to offer.
It was Saturday August 20th, 2016, and Austin had spent the previous five days getting poured upon by Mother Nature. Rockers understand that sometimes you have no choice, and have to call an audible. This event had a two stage game plan, one of which was to be outside. Well that all changed. Time adjustments were made, gaps were filled, and next thing you know all eight bands were playing inside the club, on one stage. We understood, and this wasn’t going to slow anyone down. We love the vibe of this club. Once inside the venue, a dark “rock n roll” feeling takes over and a 1980’s LA Sunset Strip down n’ dirty feel is perceived. It would be the perfect site for this well-curated event.
The blend of Psych Rock and Metal being shared by this traveling revelry was magical. From the get go we could tell that this Psycho Fest affiliated showcase was one for the ages. Since we weren't going to make it to Vegas this time, INoS knew this was a not to be missed event. All eight bands together made the Psycho Fest Road Show what it was intended to be; an in your face evening of raucous music covering all aspects of progressive rock n’ roll. The shredding of guitars and bass, the reverb, the pounding of drums, and the powerful vocals kept INoS fueled for seven hours. All of the bands were solid, but honorable mention must be conveyed about our experiences with Highlands, Mammatus, Tales of Murder and Dust, and Acid Witch.
Highlands brought it all the way from Long Beach, California, and smashed it in our face. The West Coast rockers brought their A game in a journey that took INoS to outer space and back. The words “Holy Shit” come to mind. We were blown away. The guitars were heavy, the bass was grinding, and the drums were smashing. These guys delivered a dark message and it was loud and clear. LBC spacerocked the house. Thank you Highlands.
Another California delight, Mammatus, representing Santa Cruz, California, brought the ATX a good taste of some Psychedelic Stoner Rock. INoS instantly was digging the guitar grooves. Best described as trippy jams with a touch of 70’s era Black Sabbath.
Danish Psych Rockers Tales of Murder and Dust, turned out to be the sleeper delight of the night. INoS heard the buzz about the band, but was not familiar with their stuff. Quickly we found ourselves standing in a haze of psychedelia, tripping and gazing to some great waves. It was yet another display of darkness that felt so desolate, yet sounded so perfect. It was fun to watch the band’s great stage performances while listening to their neat experimental sound. This was one of the best sets of the night. Tales of Murder and Dust, Thanks, we salute you.
The rest of the night was truly not for the weak nor the faint. It was Heavy and Dark and headlined by Detroit Psych, Horror, Metal Outfit - Acid Witch. Acid Witch dropped it hard, and left the crowd feeling scared, scarred, and woozy. Best characterized as a rollicking jamboree Horror Soundtrack of Classic Metal outfitted with a severed zombie’s head tossed through the crowd. Not to be outdone by the lurking Evil Wicked Witch of the South. At times the witch was seen in a corner waving it's wand and moments later he was on the shoulders of another reveleer screaming “Trick or Treat.” This was definitely a spectacle, an experience, and a sight to be seen. With a stage show similar to the House of Horrors and including some of the most serious and loud 1980’s Heavy Metal we've heard in a long time, this was fun. Indie Network of Sound was on the move, front and center, stage left and right, as well as in the back of the club prancing around with their fists in the air. Acid Witch was the perfect end to a perfect night.
All in all, the Psycho Fest Road Show was an opportunity to catch some of the best bands you had never heard of - that are now the bands you will never forget.