UTG PHOTOS: Fronzilla, Palisades & More in Grand Rapids, MI (9/28/15)

On September 28, Fronzilla rolled through The Stache in Grand Rapids, MI alongside It Lives, It Breathes, Whitney Peyton, and Palisades to support his debut rap album, Party People’s Anthem, available now through Razor & Tie Records.

The mysterious “Stache” has become an ongoing topic of conversation for newcomers each time I visit The Intersection. I’ve overheard rumors of hidden lairs underneath the venue, a VIP lounge and stage with open bar hidden in the back by the greenroom, and even murmurs of a secret staircase leading to the luxurious upper levels. This was my first time attending a Stache event and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that I didn’t have to battle any trolls, or even swim through a moat to find it. I simply walked in the front door.

Instead of opening up the whole venue, the show took place in the front lounge on a smaller stage. It created a much more personal atmosphere. There were no barriers and minimal security. The place was fairly empty. There were twenty or so people sitting in the back at tables sipping drinks and maybe another twenty on the floor. Given it was a Monday, and early, I was still amazed to see such a small turnout.

It Live It Breathes - 9-27-15 - (8)

First up was It Lives, It Breathes–the second band signed to Stay Sick Records–supporting the release of their upcoming album, Silver|Knights, available this fall. When asked if the crowd had ever heard of them, only one timid onlooker spoke up. But that didn’t stop them from waking up the room and reminding the zombies on the floor that they’re at a concert. Their newest music video for “Independence Day” is a good example of what you could expect from seeing them live. The set was tight and catchy, but didn’t bring anything new to the table.

Whitney Peyton - 9-28-15 - (2)

Next up was Whitney Peyton–one of the sickest female rap artists in the game–supporting her new EP, Fear of Falling, which is available for free on her website. This was my first time seeing Whitney and I was blown away by her performance and charisma. From the second she walked out in her mysterious hooded gown, she made it very clear that it “didn’t matter if she was playing to a crowd of fifty or five thousand, we were all about to have a lot of fun.” She found a new way to engage the crowd with every song; be it crowd surfing, taking selfies with fans’ phones, running around the room to engage tables, or moving the performance to the top of the bar. There was never a dull second, it was unreal. She gained my respect and admiration in a way that only a few artists have and I look forward to scouting out her shows in the future.

Palisades - 9-28-15 - (8)

Palisades went on as the co-headliners, pushing material from their new album, Mind Games, available now through Rise Records. With the bar set at the ceiling, they kept the party moving without any trouble. There’s something addicting about the new Mind Games album that makes you want to slam your drink and jump on someone’s head. There’s a song for every person, every situation. All screaming for you to let go and have a little fun. That energy follows Palisades every time they perform, and tonight was no different. This was the third time I’ve had the opportunity to watch them this year and I look forward to their future endevours.

Fronzilla - 9-28-15 - (4)

Last but not least, the infamous or adored Fronzilla took the stage in a black cloak and a torrent of vulgarity. Preaching a nearly identical message to the one we’re familiar with in Attila, we were faced with more of that IDGAF persona that he has become so notorious for. His evolution from the metal scene to the rap world felt forced and the angsty aggression that Fronz is best known for felt misplaced. A few random stragglers showed up to start a mosh pit during the performance, but other than that it felt reasonably uneventful and struggled to meet the standards set by the opening acts.





Benjamin Howell
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