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  • Rich Kassirer

Issue 27: I Survived Dragonforce

We all have have things we have lost tolerance for. Animated kids’ films? No more, thank you. Musical theater? Not unless our kids our in it. Costume parties? No invite necessary. But it is good occasionally to step outside your comfort zone and take in experiences you don’t consider your style. Sometimes they even surprise you.

A couple of summers ago, we spent a weekend at a jam-band festival. We are not big fans of jam music but we were interested to see if the groovy vibes of the Grateful Dead era that we knew and loved still existed. (They actually do!) Did we come away loving the music? No. But we were more appreciative of the whole scene.

This year we put our mettle to a test by taking our son to a metal concert. Now the metal-est we get is Zeppelin and Hendrix, so this was a real challenge.

The question was not only would our ears be able to take the decibals, but would we be able to tolerate the music and the scene, which has never appealed to us.

So how did it turn out? You’ll have to read all about it in our review, but we will tell you we were pleasantly – and amusingly – surprised.

Something that might not surprise you is that we have picked our favorites for this year and they include albums by Eilen Jewell and the Avett Brothers. We have written about both bands in depth, reviewing both their albums and concerts. It makes us happy just thinking about them.

We had a great time at shows this year, seeing performances by Regina Spektor, Grace Potter, and the Avetts at the House of Blues, Kathleen Edwards at the Paradise, Steve Earle at the Berklee Performance Center, and the metal extravaganza with Dragonforce at the Palladium in Worcester.

Check out our annual list of favorites.

Finally, just in case you hadn’t gotten your complete musical fill from this issue, we offer a review of the new release from – gasp! – Gillian Welch and David Rawlings. It’s actually the first release from David Rawlings, with help from Gillian Welch.

Hey, at least they have finally released something new. And with it, we can slip back into our comfort zone.

To read the full issue, click HERE

To read about Dragonforce, click HERE To read our review of David Rawlings album, click HERE


1. “January Wedding,” “I and Love and You,” the Avett Brothers. A wonderful little ditty of a love song. 2. “Long Distance Runaround,” “Fragile,” Yes. Reaching way back to someplace way back in my brain. 3. “To the Dogs or Whoever,” The Historical Conquests of Josh Ritter,” Josh Ritter. Still a blast to listen to. 4. “The Rascal,” “Hundreds of Lions,” Erin McKeown. Erin sure knows how to have fun – even when she’s mad! 5. “A Man Needs a Maid/Heart of Gold,” “Live at Massey Hall 1971,” Neil Young. A great solo acoustic version.

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