Monday, April 15, 2024

Outside, Brain Cave, Bit and Reptile at Ottawa Tavern Saturday

If you’re looking to find loud rock and roll this weekend here in Toledo, look no further than Toledo’s alternative music venue, The Ottawa Tavern. On Saturday, March 2, The Ottawa Tavern will host four of the loudest bands within a 100 mile radius of the city: Outside, Brain Cave, Bit and Reptile. 

Brain Cave, the night’s only out of towners, are a post-hardcore band from Cleveland. They’re currently on tour in support of their new LP, Foot off the Gas, which was released on 2/16 via Head to Wall Records. While vocalist/guitarist Mike Bellis roars his lyrics from deep beneath an onslaught of pummeling rhythms and cutting guitars, the band is reminiscent of a heavier version of Detroit’s Protomartyr, mixed with catchy (but decidedly heavy) Greg Sage influenced guitar riffs. Foot off the Gas kicks off with “Neologism,” a track that is so high-energy, you can feel the air moving and the pit forming as drummer Matt Ducey lays down a lightning quick 16th-note pattern on his ride cymbal. The only reprieve they offer the listener isn’t until track 4, “Caulk Lung,” when the band does finally take their foot off the gas (hey!) and lock into a downtempo, stoner rock groove. 

Head to Wall labelmates Outside will be at the Ottawa Tavern on Saturday in support of Brain Cave. Outside, a shoegaze/post hardcore band from Toledo, will be supporting their first two records, 2017’s Outside (Clegg Records) and 2020’s Green in You (Head to Wall). I’m not sure if it’s the crushing guitars or the thunderous beats by drummer Evin Daniels (or a combination of both) but Outside’s music is like a weighted blanket – once you put it on, it’s hard to take it off. Their latest single, “Peace With,” which was released as a flexi disc via Head to Wall in 2022, comes from the Green in You sessions and features all the hallmarks of the shoegaze genre: layers upon layers of thick guitars and singer Evin Daniels’ vocals saturated in gallons of reverb. 

RELATED: Music Calendar March 2024

Outside’s drummer Evin Daniels and bassist Cody Harris round out the rhythm section in the sludge-metal band Bit, who get their namesake from the first track on The Melvins’ 1996 LP Stag. Trading places with Outside’s Eli Flakes and Drew Arnold on guitar in Bit is Matt Gruen on guitar and vocals. Gruen’s Kilmister-influenced bellow pairs perfectly with the detuned onslaught of guitars that make up their self-titled debut EP. 

Rounding out the bill is Reptile, a two-piece goregrind/grindcore band from Toledo. Their debut album, う~ん。。人間 (which is Japanese for Hmmm…human), is sonically similar how Metallica’s disastrous St. Anger (the one with the trash can snare) would have sounded if someone had actually told Metallica that they should try making a coherent record instead of whatever it was that St. Anger became. Which is to say, with blast beats galore and song titles like “Limbs Everywhere,” and “Chopped off Head,” う~ん。。人間 absolutely rips. 

This night of noise starts at 7 pm. Tickets are $10 in advance and at the door. See you in the pit.

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