As I sit typing this blog post I am listening, for the third time, to Ego Likeness' latest CD entitled When the Wolves Return. The album is so new that it hasn't been officially released yet. So how did I get my hands on it so early in the game? The answer is that last night marked Aurelio Voltaire's anticipated return to Fayetteville as a part of his Forgotten Cities Tour, which he is doing with the creators of the new album, one that I'm very much enjoying.
For those not familiar with with them, Ego Likeness is a darkwave/industrial band from Baltimore. It was founded back in 1999 by artist/guitarist Steven Archer and writer/vocalist Donna Lynch. While I had heard them before last night's show, I was totally unprepared for just how good they would sound live. Accompanied only by a drummer whose name escapes me, Ego Likeness opened the night's festivities with a stellar performance. I am very impressed with Donna's vocals as well as Steven's ability to create a full industrial sound to accompany his live guitar work. As the group performed, an old black and white horror film played on a screen behind them. Nice touch guys!
As for Voltaire's performance...well, what can I say? The man is thoroughly entertaining. His comedic mix of singing, guitar playing, story telling and just plain having fun is infectious. His style is consistent; yet, he manages to bring new material to the fore with each new visit. If I found a somber moment in last night's program it was when he spoke about his reasoning behind the Forgotten Cities Tour. It seems that there are cities Mr. Voltaire used to visit regularly that have more or less been left behind due to practical financial considerations. As he put it, cities that used to have weekly goth nights first scaled down to monthly, then down to twice per year, etc. until the goth night scene simply ceased to exist. Performers such as Voltaire and Ego Likeness need to at least be able to make ends meet while on tour; and in many localities, that's no longer happening. So, he's hoping that by hitting these neglected cities, he might be able to create sort of a goth-event revival. Good for him and I wish him every success with that. As for Fayetteville, he informed us that we're still a viable market and that we bring in larger crowds than some larger cities. Good for us! That means he'll keep coming.
I'm not great at doing reviews, so I'll just say that last night was a great time and I enjoyed Cannibal and Craft as a new venue. It was good getting together with old friends and acquaintances while enjoying some great entertainment. My personal thanks go Bobby Scarbrough for organizing this wonderful event and making it happen. To Voltaire and Ego Likeness I simply want to say, thanks for coming and giving us such a good time.
As always, Voltaire concluded his performance by bringing up the Fayetteville Chapter of the Beelzebub Philharmonic Choir to assist him with the last song for the night.