by Robert Bell
BLACK TUSK, THOU, MONSTRO
7 p.m. Downtown Music Hall. $10 adv., $12 d.o.s.
Hailing from Savannah, Ga. (home of co-conspirators like Baroness and Kylesa), Black Tusk mixes elements of hardcore (think early Black Flag) and nasty Motorhead ass-kicking with the hammering riff-violence of classic Slayer. The band isn't shy about locking down on a bitchin' groove or unfurling an effects-laden swirl of psychedelic guitar every once in a while. But overall, don't look for a lot of weedly-weedly fret-board acrobatics. Black Tusk is all about the bludgeoning.
As with many Southern metal bands, the inestimable Eyehategod is a foundational element for Baton Rouge's Thou. But from the sludgy blues metal of its forebear, Thou expands in nearly every direction, from caustic black metal throat shredding to grindcore blast beats to occasional moments of Floyd-ian space-out to gloomy post-rock atmospherics.
Monstro is a relatively new act out of Atlanta, with personnel formerly of Torche and Bloodsimple, and hearkens back to classic hard-rock giants like Rush and The Who. Locals Iron Tongue and Weedbeast round out what will be, without question, one of the best metal shows of the year, at a place that gets a whole lotta great metal shows.