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[whitespace] Up on the Downside

South Bay band poised to jump to big time

By Sarah Quelland

AN INCREASINGLY VISIBLE presence on the South Bay scene, downside shows some of the potential to become one of the next major groups from this area. On its debut album, Sleep, powerful vocals, passionate lyrics and gut-wrenching melodies give this professional outfit the accessibility of bands like Creed and the intensity of bands like Tool. Frontman Eric Victorino is a gifted singer who brings both emotion and confidence to the band's striking original material. Young but skilled musicians round out the lineup, including Ryan Hernandez on guitar, Hrag Chanchanian on bass and Patrick Spain on drums. Intricate song structures and interesting effects give the band a distinctive, cohesive sound, while desperate lyrics like "I wish I could wash this all away/Dragging you across my wrists" ("Sleep") bring out a deeper dynamic. Highlights off Sleep include "Off Axis (Colour)," "Medicinal" and "In Soma."

The group participated in the M.L.S. Battle of the Bands last Thursday (July 5) at the Usual, competing against Hope Child, Spun and the Blind. There was a tie between downside and Spun, and both bands will compete in the finals, which will be held July 28, downside is also taking part in the Silicon Valley Beer Festival, which will be held this Saturday (July 14) at Shoreline Amphitheatre. Sponsored by KSJO and Henry Weinhard's, the event features local, national and international microbrews and performances by downside, Electromotive, Ones and Zeros and other bands. Tickets are $10, and the festival runs noon-6pm. downside is also expected to perform on Saturday (July 14), after the beer festival, at the Cactus Club at a big two-stage rock show featuring Reaction 31, Tenfold, Shortie, Element of Surprise, Funeral Diner and other bands. The band also has a show lined up for July 18 at the Gaslighter Theater in Campbell with onelinedrawing, Fighting Jacks and Sloe. . . . Electromotive will also compete in the M.L.S. Battle of the Bands with Ignition, Good for You and Univeral Mind this Thursday (July 12) and is scheduled to perform at the Backbeat on July 24 with Mike Tramp.

A Metallica fan convention will be held to celebrate the release of Metallica action figures created by McFarlane Toys. Dubbed the MetalliBash 2001, the event is scheduled for Sept. 21 at Maritime Hall. Six hundred tickets will be released to Metallica Club members and their guests, and will only be sold until Aug. 1. After that, a waiting list will be drawn up. While event organizers are crossing their fingers that members of the illustrious metal band will make an appearance, there is no reason right now to believe that they will attend. However, the Metallica tribute band, Creeping Death, will perform. Visit www.metallibash.com for more info.

Zero magazine presents the very special Punk Legends show featuring the Faction, Los Olvidados, Ribzy and the Forgotten this Saturday (July 14) at the Usual. Tickets are $10. ... The Secrets have two shows coming up this week. The band will perform at Kleidon's with Neon Lobster on Thursday (July 12) and again Friday (July 13) at the Gaslighter Theater.

Former Toad the Wet Sprocket frontman Glen Phillips will give an acoustic performance on July 14 at 8pm at the San Jose Stage Company to celebrate the release of his new solo album, abulum (Brick Red Records). Tickets are $15/$20 and available through Ticketweb.com.

PLAN AHEAD: Zonk, My Fat Sister, Red Asphalt and the Muckruckers, July 12 at the Cactus; Salmon, Movement, Motiv, 26mph and Feed, July 13 at the Cactus; Anti-45, 5606, Hidden Pocket and 2nd to Last, July 14 at the Gaslighter Theater; Lizzy Borden, July 14 at Palookaville in Santa Cruz; High on Fire, Operator: Generator, Woodshed and Spirit Caravan, July 15 at the Cactus; Sophie B. Hawkins, July 15 at Palookaville; Moke, July 16 at the Cactus; Stitch, Hope Conspiracy, Will Haven, Oddman and Red Tape, July 16 at the Pound in San Francisco; Godsmack, Deftones and Puddle of Mud, July 17 at Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View; Insolence and Corporate Avenger, July 19 at the Cactus; the Fixx and Venus Bleeding, July 20 at the Pound; Hell's Belles, Razor Babes and Gun St. Girls, July 21 at the Usual; Pantera, Static-X, Slayer, Morbid Angel and Skrape, July 23 at the Compaq Center in San Jose; Zen Guerilla, July 26 at the Lido; the Smithereens, July 29 at the Cactus; Everclear and the Mayfield Four, Aug. 1 at the Warfield; Depeche Mode and Poe, Aug. 4 at Shoreline; Lynyrd Skynyrd and Ted Nugent, Aug. 9 at Shoreline; Grand Slam Metal Jam with Poison, Warrant and others, Aug. 14 at Paramount's Great America; Stevie Nicks, Aug. 14 at Shoreline; Madonna, Sept. 5-6 at the Oakland Arena; Blink 182, Sept. 9 at Shoreline; Janet Jackson, Oct. 8 and 10 at the Compaq Center.

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From the July 12-18, 2001 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2001 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

For more information about the San Jose/Silicon Valley area, visit sanjose.com.




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