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Blackleaf Gardens - @ Backbeat Bar, Auckland 13/12/13

07 Jan 2014 // A review by Carl Hayman

As someone who had never really heard of Blackleaf Gardens before, I was really not sure what to expect when I got invited to their latest album release party. I decided not to do any research on them as an artist before heading along to the gig and to let their album release party give me the very first impression of the band. I had a look around at the crowd, and thought to myself, this isn't your typical rock gig - not the usual crowd of black jean and t-shirt wearing rockers with a chain hanging off their back pocket - the crowd seemed edgier.

After asking a few people around the room what they thought of Blackleaf Gardens, I got a few "yeah they're great" and
"totally awesome bro" responses, which I was expecting - but no-one really wanted to elaborate, but then they started to play ... Wow .. heavy and thick guitar riffs, but not your typical 'I wish I was in Pantera' riffs - these guys are quite unique.

Their sound is big, and quirky, and their drummer is quite honestly brutal. Offbeat grooves, nice deep bass tones, and dissonant guitar tones. I was waiting for some more melodic vocals, however I really started to understand the more I listened to them that this isn't where Blackleaf Gardens were heading with their sound, and the more I listened, the more the sound amalgamated together into something very distinctly unique. To be fair, I couldn't even start to compare them to anybody else.

In general to sum it up, if you are a musician, or you appreciate your instrument, you have to see these guys play live. The utilisation of unusual guitar chords, the deep tone of a 6 string bass, and using a small drumkit to reproduce the sound of a very bit drumkit are a big thumbs up. Check out Blackleaf Gardens for hard rock/metal with a unique twist.


About Blackleaf Gardens

Blackleaf Gardens is a four piece progressive metal band that brings crushing riffs, groovy tune and chaotically progressive rhythms together with catchy bipolar vocals delivering screams through lullabies. Likened to prestigious acts such as Opeth, Mastodon, The Faceless and Tool. The band brings an explosive, bizarre and maniacal performance.

The band formed in 2011 and has been climbing the local music scene with relentless ferocity leaving a lasting impression and building momentum. This has lead the band to open for Lord (Australia), El Schlong as well as many leading local acts.

2012 saw the release of the band's first five track EP "Seedling State," produced entirely by the band, which received repeated radio play and led the band to win the K.I.L.L. (Keep it Live & Loud) competition run by local radio station The Flat FM. The prize included means to record a debut album.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Blackleaf Gardens


Key To Infinity
Year: 2013
Type: Album
Seedling State
Year: 2012
Type: EP

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