Words by: Chris Pacifico

In Flames/The Sword :: 12.06.2006 :: Electric Factory :: Philadelphia, PA

In Flames by Patric Ullaeus
Philadelphia was brisk as In Flames wound down their tour in promotion of their latest release, Come Clarity. There were opening sets from Massachusetts metalcore collective Seemless and Italian dream metal mavens Lacuna Coil. Although the latter's sound is a little too polished and sugary, after hobnobbing backstage and talking with some of the members it became clear that they're amongst the nicest, most down to earth guys I've ever shot the breeze with.

While it was Seemless and Lacuna Coil who taxied the runway, the night truly took off when Austin's The Sword stepped out to pummel eardrums with their own style of thick doom metal. These scruffy lads rained down the stoner rock brimstone with the shrill vocals of lead singer J.D. Cronise working Medieval mysticism on the breezy "Winters Wolves" and Southern boogie on "Freya." With Orange Amps towering behind them, The Sword jammed out without meandering too far, with burly bass lines from Bryan Richie and drum licks from Trivett Wingo (coolest name ever). "Lament for the Aurochs" was a killer excursion with guitarist Kyle Shutt's hair covering the front of his face like Cousin It. "March of the Lor," an instrumental number, thrust the audience back into The Sword's hypnotic vortex. If Saruman's army of Orcs had The Sword as their official marching band in the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy they might've been victorious.

The Sword :: 12.06 by Christie Harrison
At 9:45, In Flames came to stage to roaring applause. Being hailed as the maiden practitioners of melodic death metal, these Swedes have evolved sonically in their decade and a half existence while retaining their specific touch. While fans have argued endlessly whether the new or older catalog is superior, their most recent release, Come Clarity has something for everyone.

Singer Anders Friden's dreadlocks whipped around like Medusa's snakes to the set opener "Pinball Map" off of their milestone, 2000's Clayman. They wasted no time diving head first into the thrash-oriented "Leeches," with the crowd raising their fists and shouting, "It burns/ It rips/ It hurts" in a sonorous unison.

In Flames :: 12.06 by Christie Harrison
Lead guitarist Bjorn Gelotte was noticeably absent. Friden announced that Gelotte was home with his wife who'd delivered their new baby the night before. Henrik Danhage from Evergrey filled in. "Henrik is from Evergrey" said Friden, "but tonight he's playing with a real band for the first time in his life."

Favorites like "Cloud Connected" and "Only for the Weak" were played before closing out the night with the harmonious "Take this Life" and "My Sweet Shadow." In Philly, In Flames lived up to their rep of being one of the hardest working bands in music today.

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[Published on: 1/24/07]

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rossco8 star Wed 1/24/2007 02:51PM
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These guys are terrible. Why doesn't jambase do a Korn review next? This band embodies nothing this website should. It's like I blinked and this place went down the tubes. Don't mention angry and violent metal bands. Stop catering to Indie-rock because that lyric-driven whiney white-boy crap has got to stop. The "next new hot techno band" sounds exactly as played out and repetitive as the one before it. Get back to basics and start respecting the bands that made this website and continue to innovate (see MMW, Kimock, Galactic, etc.) or seek out truly hip new bands (if they still exist). Jambase, get your act together before I am thoroughly convinced this scene is truly dead.

rossco8 star Wed 1/24/2007 02:55PM
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Or...if you can't find any new good bands then let's start backtracking and retrace the historical roots of the music we love. I would much rather read a piece on the life of Ralph Stanley or the birth of The Meters than anything about these chumps.

loseruser starstarstarstarstar Wed 1/24/2007 03:47PM
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I think Sword is actually really kick ass. I for one am glad that jambase is branching out and covering a more diverse lineup of bands. Rossco8, you should start a new website called Wookbase or Lotbase because it seems like the only bands that you care to read about are ones that tour with a drug scene. While I see and agree to some extent with your point about backtracking (which jambase does pretty frequently see interview with Pete Townshend, Bob Weir, etc.) I also feel like in order to learn something that I don't already know (or think I know) I want some exposure to something new that I haven't tried before. I think you're being way to harsh... but it's probably because you couldn't score any acid at the Sword show dOOOOOOOOd.

Kayceman Wed 1/24/2007 03:48PM
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When I have time I read these comments, and sometimes I'm moved to comment myself. Different folks like different things, I understand that, and I don't expect everyone to "get" every band we cover. Not everyone likes heavier shit, or hip-hop, or whatever, but what I don't understand are comments like: "This band embodies nothing this website should." Maybe since I've been working here for so long I forgot what we "should" embody, perhaps someone can fill me in? I was always under the impression we covered live music? This was a live show with real musicians playing rock music? Seem like fair game to me.

And then there's "Don't mention angry and violent metal bands." Like it or not, anger fuels rock music. No, not all of it, but a lot of it. You don't think The Who were angry? Pink Floyd were pissed off... Or how about Drive-By Truckers, Mars Volta, Panic, Sublime, Neil Young or any of the other bands that I love... Anger is pivotal, don't kid yourself.

All Loving Liberal White Guy Wed 1/24/2007 04:02PM
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All Loving Liberal White Guy

hey rossco, say what you will but galactic live shows just ain't been the same since theryl left.

Stevie_t Wed 1/24/2007 08:00PM
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ya know, i defended the deftones becuz i like them, but this is really enough. decemberists. shins. in flames.

i understand what you are getting at kayce and the site is usually really helpful to me, but if you are just gonna cover every band that plays music live music then good luck. i don't care to hear about every metal band that winds up getting a major label deal. in flames were boring when they weren't big, and they are more so now.

i want to hear about good jam bands. or bands that will be at jam band festivals in the summer (like hip hop and electronic stuff). i'm getting tired of sifting through all the irrelevant shit. i know there are blurred lines about what is a jamband or should be included on here. but fuck this.

ps rossco...what you don't know about electronic music could fill a warehouse, and electronic music is the future of music becuz it is a new step in musical evolution. get used to it.

tzolkin13 starstarstar Wed 1/24/2007 09:38PM
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In Flames is talented. They also have a positive message in their lyrics. Stop making ignorant statements.

jahrome17 Thu 1/25/2007 07:09AM
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I think the central debate here (as with many other discussions) is what Jambase is about: live music or the jam? True, it is called JAMbase, but their tagline is "Go see live music," and "jambands" are so hard to define.

However, every time someone supports articles of non-jambands by saying "this is a live music website" or "you need to be open to different types of music," it makes me think. If this site is truly about LIVE music, then where are reviews and articles about musicians in genres such as classical, R&B, or pop? I seen many orchestras who have been more moving and inspirational than "jambands" such as moe. or Umphreys (just as examples, nothing against those bands). Pop music is also underrepresented on this site. There are many great pop artists out there who I would love to read articles about.

Of course, there are other sites to get those types of articles from. But that's the case for metal, indie, rap, jazz, and even "jambands."

So the central question remains: what is Jambase?

mojofolk Thu 1/25/2007 07:30AM
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I for one absolutely love what JamBase is doing... I am first and foremost a music fan… and the bands that consistently get my ticket money are those that push the envelope. For a band to push the envelope they must keep things fresh and interesting, and this is where multiple influences come into play. I recognize that if musicians only listen to one small subsection of music then their influences will be stunted and the evolution of music will stagnate... I’ve been lucky enough to sit down with many of my favorite artists and discuss their tastes… many of you “jam band” zealots would be amazed by the breadth of musical knowledge and influence many of our favorite musicians hold. The Mars Volta came out of left field for many of us and now they are a constant on this website and in intelligent music conversations because they are great... STS9, Disco Biscuits, Lotus blur the boundaries between electronica and jazzy jams… they have huge fan bases because they are great… MMJ, Drive by Truckers, Mofro, Panic all are great… their greatness… the interest comes from the sound… the sound tells the stories of the influences old and new and the resulting innovations… That is what JamBase is doing… it is telling us the story of music evolution. I for one would not check this website 10 times a day if all it had was information about Panic, Moe., SCI, and other “jam bands”… that form of stasis is boring… keep me informed… keep me moving forward… thank you JamBase

Rebacreates starstarstarstarstar Thu 1/25/2007 09:20AM
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In Flames Kicks Ass. These guys are amazing musicians. Rossco8 likes to hate and thats lame. Theyre amazing guitar players. Everything is written in awesome harmonies, kind of in tribute to the Allman brothers, and they are extremely focused on groove. I think this is phenominal that more metal is showing up on jambase. Korn sucks man, you cant even compare in flames with korn. If you actually listen to their music you might be able to appreciate stiff thats going on. Im nsure MMW and Kimock would.

I would also like to say i've had more fun seeing in flames than i did phish at alpine in the latter years. Trey toying around with his effects pedal for 2 hours < a tight nit groove metal band with amazing guitar melodies

All Loving Liberal White Guy Thu 1/25/2007 09:28AM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

All Loving Liberal White Guy

did anybody see trhat episode of south park where that massive "hippy festival" took over the town and it took cartman two days to drill through the crowd so that the only way he could disperse them was by playing a slayer cd and then when he did, all the hippies were like "too angry man. not cool."

rossco8 Thu 1/25/2007 09:50AM
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My concern is that this scene (perhaps best represented by this website) is unsure of the direction it wants to go. When jambands were blowing up in the late-nineties this site was my homepage that I DID check ten times a day. Each time it seemed like there was a new band doing completely original and unique shit that I had never heard of before. It was mind-blowing and exhilarating. Fast-forward to now and it seems like an identity crisis. Even the bands are confused. Take The Slip; last night I was listening to a "Get Me With Fuji" from 6-14-02 that was a ten-minute shredding musical odyssey with no vocals. After reading so much hype about “Eisenhower” this year I went out and bought it and was hugely disappointed. It was basically all songs they have been playing for years but done over with vocal inspired sappiness resembling pop music. It's not as if they were advancing musically (i.e. Miles electric era) it's like they were attempting to redefine themselves by finding a niche in the currently more thriving indie-rock genre (I suppose Miles initially took similar heat for his move, but what he did was far more ORIGINAL than what The Slip is doing). Even Trey, the founder and CEO of this website, is wandering about aimlessly in the ambiguous musical world of pop and rock. Some would say, “Well, it’s time for you to expand your musical acceptance to incorporate a growing and more diverse scene.” However, I don’t really feel like this recent shift at Jambase is promoting diversity, rather compromising it. Now, new bands are fitting into an established genre: southern rock (DTB), indie-rock (The Decemberists), electronica (The Pnuma Trio) and now, apparently, hard-core metal (In-Flames). Maybe it’s because I’m getting older (though I’m only 24) that I’m searching for new bands by going back twenty or thirty years from today and digging deeper (or just listening to more shows from the late 90's and early 2000's (?)). It's not some sort of pathetic nostalgia, but just a deeper appreciation of the roots. Show me a resurgence of the vibe permeating this scene six years ago and I’ll be back on board. Until then, I’ll only check this website every other day. (P.S. Two things that I find to be truly innovative and still fill me with hope is Everyone Orchestra and Jamcruise)

Astronaut Jones starstarstarstar Thu 1/25/2007 11:57AM
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Astronaut Jones

Man rossco! What will jambase do if you only check it every other day? They'll probably shut it down quicker than an internet gambling site. What ever did all of us music lovers do before you?
And to Kayce and the rest of the jambase folks: all you guys can do is put out the media that you think you need to put out. The vast majority of us don't mind articles on other types of bands and infact welcome them. Then there are those who, in truth, really don't like music at all. They like bands and scenes and things that go on around those things. I say screw it! Keep up the good work. Don't like an article? Don't read it. Stop being douchebags!

Kayceman Thu 1/25/2007 12:06PM
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Did he really say The Slip's "Eisenhower" was disappointing? The conversation stops here for me...

Stevie_t Thu 1/25/2007 12:27PM
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just cuz musicians are talented doesn't mean their music is interesting at all. just look at trey's solo career.

in flames are talented, i'll grant them that, but metal is so fuckin tired as a whole. and they (in flames) have gone down hill musicall imho as it is.

i know there are a million jam bands, why cant i hear about THEM, the whole "jam" prefix to jambase is really misleading if every band that plays live and has a guitarist who can solo are documented.

theorb419 Thu 1/25/2007 02:05PM
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When you say Panic, do you mean Panic! at the Disco or Widespread? I just don't know what to expect around here anymore.

rulosa01 Thu 1/25/2007 04:17PM
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I dunno guys, I've heard of In flames but never heard them, and I think reading about metal on jambase is interesting. honestly the only question I have is why the fuck not? All the articles and reviews and stuff are written by music fans, so I dont understand how by not covering In Flames Jambase would then be covering something else instead... What's wrong with new music/music not usually covered? If you don't dig it you can always skip reading it. If you've never heard of it then its something new. I just don't see why peoples are so spiteful on the internets, the damn site is free!

tzolkin13 starstarstar Thu 1/25/2007 05:20PM
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If a band is talented you can't disrespect them. It's all about talent. We live in an age of mediocrity.

...and Trey's solo career has spawned many good songs.

squegee your third eye stevieT

In Lake'ch...I hope

rossco8 Thu 1/25/2007 05:51PM
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True Kayceman, how can "Eisenhower" be called anything short of spectacular after "Life in Disguise" was called upon to close out a killer Grey's Anatomy episode before 20 million viewers? The Slip has clearly reached the pinnacle of success. I, however, would still take them as the reigning shredmasters of Lupo's over the serenading balladeers they have become...any day of the week.

All Loving Liberal White Guy Thu 1/25/2007 07:13PM
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All Loving Liberal White Guy

talkin' smack on the slip's new album?




mojofolk Fri 1/26/2007 06:37AM
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Go check out a Slip concert... perfect mix is vocals and shredding... evolution is a wonderful thing.

I've been were rossco8 seems to be... with the improvisational blinders on nothing else matters... and I still believe that the musical conversation that occurs between musicians minds during jams are the closest I can come to a purely euphoric transcendental experience... but there is SO much amazing music out there... and I want to hear it… and I want to hear about it… Maybe it’s an age thing… or more to point; maybe it’s a maturity thing… I still go to A LOT of shows and festivals and dance, expand, and rage… And as a musician I want to increase my musical vocabulary exponentially… much like a writer will read voraciously to help hone their craft I listen to everything that I can shove in my ears so that my bag of tricks is heavy and spilling over… and I respect anyone who can get up on stage and put it out there… So keep on doing what you are doing JamBase… keep me informed

mojofolk Fri 1/26/2007 11:20AM
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If you want some innovation and something to get excited about in the "scene" check out Kid Beyond, Motion for Alliance, Wookiefoot, the Mutaytor, Green Lemon, Delta Nove, U-Melt and Yo Mama's Big Fat Booty Band

Tan starstarstarstarstar Fri 1/26/2007 05:12PM
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Music is awesome.

DaKracken Sat 1/27/2007 08:18AM
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I love The Sword,sounds like masters of reality era Sabbath which is never a bad thing. Black Sabbath was my benchmark as a youngster as opposed to others affinity to the Grateful Dead. I love heavy groove music that jams. Heavy music is always getting slammed as stupid and inane and unfortunately that will never change but that doesn't mean it isn't good. The Grateful Dead bored me to tears and yes I did see them live 3 times so I have seen them in their element. I don't dismiss them for their incredible influence on millions of people but they just never rang my bell so to speak, same for Phish & String Cheese. They just don't do it for me but a guitar tuned down to D running through a stack of amps always makes me sport some wood.

TheSwordSucks star Sun 1/28/2007 09:01AM
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The Sword is LAME. This is the most generic , watered down band EVER. The thing is they are trying to pawn this garbage off on people who like Trivium and other generic mainsteasm bands because they have no clue what TRUE HEAVY MUSIC IS. People are so easily fooled. If you think The Sword is heavy you couldnt be more wrong. They are a bunch of trendy hipsters that have never done anything original. They are thiefs. Get a clue people.

TheSwordSucks star Sun 1/28/2007 09:07AM
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All of the bands on this bill suck , but The Sword will always suck no matter what they try and do. They look like little girls and they should be beat down. If you want to hear where The Sword STOLE their sound from check out REAL bands like SLEEP , HIGH ON FIRE , FLOOR , PENTAGRAM. You will never hear these bands on a video game because they are note motivated by trying to be the next big thing. DEATH TO FALSE METAL!

trustme Sun 1/28/2007 01:22PM
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Kayceman, much respect to you and I dig that you don't hear bitching and just change direction away from what you to put out there but there is some validity to the bitchin. Why don't you cover Justin Timberlake or Jay-z, is there no bar that is met, no standard, no demographic that you are beholden too? I think what strikes me is that the core of the jambase followers find a common thread in "our scene" I'm not sure what "our scene" is or what the common thread is but you know it when you hear and see it. That common thread is something we all hold dear. It's like we feel some of the acts your putting energy into don't live up to what ever the hell that "THING" is. Fests like HSMF, Hornings, Reggae/river, 10klfest, Wakarusa etc. are diverse yet they have that common thing. I think the backlash you read every time you cover someone who wouldn't be on those bills is just the crowd not wanting all the "phonies" in on our little secret and or reading about the "phonies". I guess all the hating shows that we "open minded" liberal music fans can be narow minded, non- accepting, cliquey, whiners too. I say it's your baby put your energy into who ever you want but don't be surprised when the push back comes. See you at the shows!

STEG187 Sun 1/28/2007 01:31PM
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When you say Panic, do you mean Panic! at the Disco or Widespread? I just don't know what to expect around here anymore."


snappy Mon 1/29/2007 05:30AM
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This is a music site that began by exclusively covering what came to be known as jam bands. As with most living things, Jambase evolved and has branched out into music we feel is worthy of covering. Period. The writers are endlessly fascinated with new sounds, old sounds, weird sounds, etc. We strive to bring the best (and worst) we encounter to the table. The vast majority do this work for one reason only - we love music.

The one trait about the jam scene most musicians themselves have pointed out to me in the last seven years of writing is how open-minded the audiences have been. They love that someone can watch a bluegrass set at a festival and walk immediately over to wild space rock from Japan AND enjoy both equally. To me, the saddest thing about the comments around here lately is how closed off, how afraid of anything that's not already known, already tasted and experienced, many many people are. There's a world of music out there and just because it doesn't always play 20-minute improvs or smell like hippie butt doesn't mean it shouldn't have a place here. Jambase is for music lovers, pure and simple, and as one of the primary architects of what we do I assure you that there's NO limits to what my ears will check out for the readers of this site.

shainhouse starstarstarstarstar Mon 1/29/2007 10:24AM
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Firstly, Chris.. bang-up job once again. You make me want to keep procrastinating. I've never heard of either band as my taste is more on the lighter side of things, but each will warrant a listen after this read. Also, I'd like to chime in, as I rarely do in comments, on the 'debate' on what should be covered in JamBase. Since I'm the one who wrote the Panic at the Disco article and got flogged for it, I have been trying more and more to push the boundaries, while never forgetting to cover the core bands on JamBase. JamBase is expanding and that is what life is about, the expansion and development of knowledge and taste. The more we know, the more we can discern and gain appreciation out of, right? Therefore, kudos to Kayceman and co. for continuing to push the envelope. As the saying goes, knowing is half the battle, so the more the merrier as my musical base burgeons with every read.

Lastly, if you plan on commenting negatively because you feel this and other pieces do not belong on JamBase, firstly read the article, gauge your opinion of it and its style on the basis of the night in question and then please comment in some sort of a knowledgeable way, as it will encourage more debate and understanding. Swearing and denouncing something without giving it a chance is ignorance, plain and simple.

Shain Shapiro

topherjames starstarstarstarstar Tue 1/30/2007 08:07AM
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Keep up the good work Jambase. The only reason I continue to come here and read your articles is because I can expect to find something new and interesting everyday. rossco8 sounds like a very close minded individual which is sad, but to each his own. I enjoyed this article and the Spank Rock article, most recently. I now own Spank Rock and rock the shit out of it on the daily all thanks to Jambase. fuck the haters.

Lespaulman starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/1/2007 09:27AM
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Tanner hit it on the head...
Music is awesome

The rest of you can suck my dick if you don't like the direction Jambase is going. Fuck direction anyways and ROCK ON!!!!!

purplepassion starstarstarstarstar Fri 2/2/2007 06:43PM
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emobody the invisible. IN FLAMES fuckin rules all. Thank you jambase for keepin it fresh and original, keep coverin as much new stuff as possible> including metal even if it may be unconventional for this site. who says it needs to be all jambands, some people need to get off their high horse and listen to some good fucking music, the same goes for dinosaur jr. OPEN YOUR MINDS> and for the Korn comparision, know your music before you try and make a point.