Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Pathogenic busts out this fall

Singer Jake Burns and bassist Dan Leahy (Sam McLennan photo)
Pathogenic and Conforza are bands that kicked my ass not once but twice this summer at a couple of the festivals at The Palladium in Worcester. So without reservation it’s easy to recommend the Rock Fest September Throw Down happening Friday, Sept. 14 at the Elks Lodge, 97 New Athol Road in Orange.

In addition to featuring Pathogenic and Conforza (who will be touring the East Coast together this fall), Rock Fest has Torment the Dreamer, Zombie Fighter, Mummified Circuitry, The Lost and Never Found, Storytellers, and Chosen to Rot. Show time is 5 p.m.

Pathogenic is readying for the Oct. 12 release of “The Solipsist Dream,” the follow-up to “Cyclopean Imagery.”

Like “Cyclopean,” “The Solipsist Dream” follows a story arc, which bassist Dan Leahy didn’t want to reveal too much about during a recent conversation.

“It deals with inner demons,” he says.

The biggest difference this time out is that singer Jake Burns is on his own as Pathogenic shed its two-vocal format.  And Burns is a screamer, so whatever melody comes out of this prog-tech crew is going to be the responsibility of guitarists Chris Gardino and Justin Licht, while Leahy and drummer Anthony Simone hold down the rhythm section.
Chris Gardino (Sam McLennan photo)

A lot of bands have been experimenting with a death-prog fusion and this Lowell quintet definitely cooks up a version that is distinct. Live, Pathogenic is more about the explosive power of the tunes and creates a decent managed chaos that lets Burns, well, burn and the guitarists take off on tangents. On its recorded material, the band lets the music unfold at a more measured pace.

Leahy says it wasn’t an easy process to figure out.

“We’re definitely trying to keep a balance between the technical and riffy guitar based stuff, but also have a groove and heaviness. There are parts that punch you in the face and parts that are very melodic. We just try and make it flow like an organic idea,” he says.

After the two-vocalist format proved awkward, Pathogenic handed the reins to Burns and told him to just move around more on stage and get more into the performance aspect of the show, which he did, but also with as bit of a learning curve involved.

“He took a dinger, but it was OK. He’s totally into it. It doesn’t matter if there are 5 or 500 people. We’re always going to give it the same energy on stage,” says Leahy.

Other big shows this week include Hatebreed with Whitechapel, All Shall Perish, and Deez Nuts on Friday Sept. 14, at The Palladium, 261 Main St., Worcester. Show starts at 7:30 p.m.

Acaro, The River Neva, Swarming Eyes, and Necronomichrist are at Silk City Music, 99 Main St., Florence, on Friday Sept. 14. Show is at 9 p.m.

Metal Thursday at Ralph’s Diner, 148 Grove St., Worcester, has Bog of the Infidel, Haxen, Haethen, and Barren Oak Sept. 13. Show is at 9 p.m.

U.K. punk-metal vets Coitus plays Monday, Sept. 17,  at the Cambridge Elks, 55 Bishop Allen Drive, Cambridge. Fast Death, White Line Fever, and Negligence are also on the bill, and show starts at 8 p.m.

On Friday, Sept. 14, tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. for Acacia Strain’s Oct. 6 CD-release show, Dethklok with All That Remains and Machine Head on Nov. 4, and Megadeth's 20th anniversary celebration of  “Countdown to Extinction” on Nov. 11, all at The Palladium in Worcester. Tix available through

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