Friday, April 20, 2018

SIRENIA Return to Seattle! Gig Review! 4/17/18


Studio Seven
Seattle, WA


When Sirenia came to the U.S. for the first time last year, founder Morten told me that they hoped to be back around spring in 2018. Well, as luck would have it, Sirenia came back to do a headlining tour of the U.S. in the spring!

I was looking forward to this show as the band are promoting, "Dim Days of Dolor" and getting ready to head back into the studio later this year to record the follow up.

The band's symphonic metal style is still rooted in melody, emotion, and power. Lead vocalist Emma has one of the purest voices in metal. Her voice soars with character and takes the audience on a magical ride with every song she sings.

Morten and the boys paint the metal landscape with ease and proficiency. "Ashes to Ashes" sounded particularly wonderful as did the set closer, "The Other Side".

Sirenia have a Pledge Music campaign going right now. They are busy through July getting the new album recorded, with summer festival appearances as well. They have some great Pledge gifts so be sure to check out their campaign.

This band deserves a larger audience here in the U.S. Hopefully they can get on a tour next year with that will put them in front of an appreciative audience to widen their fan base. I personally would like to see them do a run with Delain and/or Within Temptation.

A powerful set on a Tuesday night from Sirenia at Studio Seven. The tour is past the half way mark. Catch them when they come to your town - you'll be glad you did!

Mark Sugiyama
Eclectic Arts


Special Thanks: Katy for the credentials - thank you for the opportunity!





Video Interview!

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Sunday, April 15, 2018

Firepower Across The Northwest - JUDAS PRIEST Concert Review! 4/15/18

Judas Priest


Black Star Riders

Showare Center
Kent, WA


The Priest is back!

Touring in support of their fantastic new album, "Firepower", Judas Priest arrived at the Showare Center in Kent, WA (south of Seattle) to celebrate their amazing career. Bringing with them fellow metal maniacs Saxon along with Black Star Riders, this was going to be the metal event of 2018 thus far!

Fans of metal know that certain bands laid the foundation for the genre. Judas Priest is always in that conversation as well they should be. The boys from Birmingham have influenced countless metal bands that it's impossible to count. Let's not forget the twin lead guitar attack - something you didn't see in metal so much back in the early days of the band. And of course Rob Halford - the Metal God. His voice, range, presence, and of course the metal wardrobe that became standard for any metal band (black leather, spikes, chains, etc) can all be traced back to him.

So, for many in attendance on Sunday night, this was a visit back to the past - seeing one of the absolute best metal bands - ever.

The sold out show started with Black Star Riders. Rising from the lineup of Thin Lizzy, Black Star Riders played a highly energetic set of classic rock 'n' roll. The band featuring Scott Gorham (from Thin Lizzy) played all original tunes sans, "Jailbreak", in the set. Black Star Riders got things going in the right direction with their opening set.

The mighty fucking Saxon took the stage next. A band that has always had it's U.S. fans but with room to add more, nabbing the special guest slot on this tour was a stroke of genius. Opening with, "Thunderbolt", from the new album of the same name, Biff and the boys showed why they've always been one of the best live bands around. Switching between classic and new tracks, the audience was treated to, "Power and The Glory", "The Secret of Flight", "Dallas 1pm", "They Played Rock N Roll", "Princess Of The Night", and several other heavy metal classics. The band most definitely left an impression on those that weren't familiar with them. This would be a great opportunity for the band to do another co headlining or headlining tour in the U.S. as a follow up later in the year or early next.

The crowd was getting anxious for the headliner. As the lights dimmed and, "The Guardian" blared out over the PA, the time had arrived for the metal masters - Judas Priest.

Launching into the title track, "Firepower", the band was, well, on fire. Rob Halford hasn't sounded this good for quite some time. Don't get me wrong, Rob is and always will be the Metal God but he's in some sort of zone right now as his singing has been the highlight of the new album and the tour.

Ritchie, Andy (filling in for Glenn), Ian, and Scott flew the flag of metal high all night long. From the deep cut, "Saints In Hell" to fan favorites like, "Grinder", "Running Wild", "Turbo Lover", "The Ripper", and many others. Interestingly, Kent was the tour debut of, "Freewheel Burning" - in place of "Green Manalishi" (which in turn replaced "Angel" from the beginning of the tour).

For those fans that have been following the tour, they know that Glenn Tipton made a few live appearances back east during the encores. The songs, "Metal Gods", "Breaking The Law", and "Living After Midnight" have been Glenn's songs of choice.

When "The Hellion/Electric Eye" and "You've Got Another Thing Coming" were aired in the main set instead of their usual encore slots, I was beyond ready to see Glenn during the encores if we were one of the fortunate cities.

And out he came.

What a fucking magical and heartfelt moment when he appeared. I know damn well there were some misty metal eyes in the arena when he walked out on stage. The band joined Glenn as they played the aforementioned three songs from "British Steel". Rob showed his band mate and friend of over 40 years much love and appreciation during the encores. Here's to Glenn - continue your fight against Parkinson's - the Judas Priest family is behind you!

What a night of metal! If you missed it, you blew it. Plain and simple. All three bands were stellar. This is in the running for show of the year for sure! All hail Judas Priest!


Mark Sugiyama

Eclectic Arts

Special Thanks: Chip/Jen, Doug, and Austin for the credentials - thank you all so very much!




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Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Inside A Dream In Seattle - ECHOSMITH Gig Review! 4/7/18


The Score

Jena Rose

Neptune Theater
Seattle, WA


"Inside A Dream" perfectly describes the Echosmith show in Seattle, WA. The trio of sibling band mates (along with two backing musicians) put on a show for their mostly young audience that was certainly a dream come true for many fans in attendance.

Sydney, Graham, and Noah have been described as indie pop ever since their massive single, "Cool Kids", was released a few years back from their debut release, "Talking Dreams". Touring in support of their latest release, "Inside A Dream", the band was ready to show Seattle a great time on Saturday night.

Opening up the show was Jena Rose - who performed with a drummer, guitarist, and sometimes solo. The seventeen year old received a warm reaction to her short but straightforward set.

Next up The Score, from LA, took to the stage and raised the energy level. The duo (with a touring guitarist and drummer) played a great set of tunes that made most of the audience take notice.

And then it was time. The audience was filled with many young fans - from elementary age through college age. There were parents of said fans in attendance - some looking like seasoned concert goers themselves, others not so much. And then the rest were the thirty and over crowd.

It was great fun to see the audience so emotional about seeing their band, and in particular Sydney, live on stage. The band started off with, "18", with confetti blown everywhere, and never looked back. A modern lightshow that accented the music quite well, Echosmith played the songs that made them popular as well as lesser-known tracks from the new album. "Future Me", "Bright", "Over My Head", "Get Into My Car", were all aired just to name a few tunes.

The band was tight and the energy extremely positive and fun. It was hard to not have a good time at the show (unless you're a stick in the mud). One fan was brought up on stage during the song, "Talking Dreams", who was ready to burst out of her skin with excitement. One couldn't help but smile and feel what the fan was feeling being up on stage with Sydney. That's a moment she will never, ever, forget.

Ending the main set with, "Goodbye", complete with extremely large confetti filled balloons that were tossed around by the audience, the band returned for one encore - of course - "Cool Kids". The crowd sang the lines to the song and one last blast of confetti ended the night.

I could see so many smiles on the faces of the fans as the lights went up. It was truly special. I remember my first concert when I was nine and it made a huge impact on me. To the point that here I am many years later writing and photographing live concerts.

Echosmith were a sight to behold. I highly recommend checking them out live. They are the real deal. A wonderful night was had by all!

Mark Sugiyama
Eclectic Arts
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Special Thanks: Patrice for the credentials - thank you very much. I appreciate it!






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Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Where To Find Eclectic Arts Online


I keep forgetting to "plug" the online aspect of EA besides this blog.  You can find us here:




These are the only official social media sites we are a part of.  We do not use Twitter, SnapChat, or any other platform.

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Monday, April 2, 2018

A Moment In Seattle - ODESZA Gig Review (2nd Night) - Friday 3/30/18


Lane 8


WaMu Theater
Seattle, WA


Normally if were talking local music, you would find me at anything from a rock gig to a pop gig or singer/songwriter gig. ODESZA are also from the local area and are so well known that even someone like me has heard of them. Given names as Harrison and Clayton, the duo that are ODESZA, have been making a name for themselves in the underground electronica scene since 2012. They've since blown up big time to the point where they played three consecutive shows at the WaMu theater - two of which were sold out (and possibly the third as well).

Continuing their tour behind "A Moment Apart" from 2017, the duo took to the WaMu stage on Friday night to a crowd that was highly energetic to say the least.

Thousands of fans - many under 21 - and then 20 and 30 something's, with the rest being the 40 and over set (like myself), the vibe in the venue was positive for the most part. As the lights went down the visuals started and never let up for the entire performance.

Many go this type of show to dance and dance some more. What's happening on stage isn't of primary importance to them. Others were watching the stage, entertained by the visuals, and also danced. Then there were a few that were there only socially "to be seen" - hanging in one of the bar areas - not really paying attention to anything other than the person that walked by that caught their eye.

Let me say this - the music was varied enough (not super repetitive parts) that the dynamics in the songs really came through. This mixed with the superb visuals made for a concert experience that was truly something to behold. You couldn't help but have a good time!

I would love to see other genres of music take a cue from the visuals that ODESZA used and incorporate something similar into their live shows.

Drum lines, brass instruments, and vocals also augmented what ODESZA were presenting sonically as well.

I can see why fans love going to ODESZA gigs. I hope to be at another gig myself in the future. Congratulations guys on success well deserved!

Mark Sugiyama
Eclectic Arts

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Special Thanks: Allen for the credentials - thank you very much!

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