Did you realize that yesterday, Tuesday, April 4th, 2017, was the first Tuesday of the month? Probably not…unless you are one of the faithful that look forward to Tribute Tuesday. This monthly event is hosted by J-Fell Presents, 105.9 The Brew, Slick’s Big Time BBQ, Tito’s Homemade Vodka, Rockstar Energy Drink, and Coors Light (and NO, I do not get sponsored or promoted by ANY of the previously listed hosts). This month, the band to take the stage in the intimate settings of the iHeart Skylounge was Motorbreath. If you are a Metallica fan, in the Portland area, and you have NOT seen this band…the simple question is “Why not?”
Kevin Staley (lead vocals and guitar), Bob Capka (lead guitar), Mark Trees (bass), and Joe Spencer (drums) make up the band. This foursome made a wall of metal that wrapped itself around the audience and did not let go. As somebody who has attended many of these events, I feel qualified to say that no crowd has pumped as much energy into a room to feed a band that gave back as good, if not better, than they got. This was also the first time that a crowd broke into a chant of “One more!” after the show was over to the point where an encore was granted by The Powers That Be.
You might be thinking, “But every band does an encore…it’s part of the show.” Nay, nay, Moosebreath. These tribute Tuesday events are very structured. There is a set time to start and end the show, and Motorbreath pushed it to the line, but when that last note faded, the crowd was not ready to come out of their trance. But I am getting ahead of myself…
Creeping Death opened the set with typical Motorbreath fury. You might think that a band that has taken the stage at the J-Fell Presents crown jewel that is Harefest might be a bit flat in such an intimate setting as the iHeart Skylounge. After the show, I was able to ask frontman Kevin Staley about the intensity and energy they brought from that first note, “It doesn’t matter, it’s the same feeling. We give everybody everything we can when we can…you gotta admit, a couple of people extra (Harefest can boast of crowds in the 3,000 range versus around 100 in the Skylounge) but to just have everybody right here in our face fuckin’ rockin’ out with ya, it’s like nothing else.” With such tight time constraints, the applause was still going when Joe Spencer unleashed his patented assault on the drum kit to drive the band straight into For Whom the Bell Tolls. It was at this point when the first of what is always man drumstick casualties took place. Splintered bits flew from the kit as Staley amped the crowd to an even more rapid froth by getting them to shout along in time to the beat. And once again, there was almost no break as Capka’s guitar continued to scream when the band unleashed Harvester of Sorrow.