By Brent Michael, Rock At Night Tampa Correspondent
Venue: The Orpheum, Tampa, Florida–May 7, 2017
Need hails from Athens – Greece, not Georgia! Founded in 2003, they’ve released five albums so far, the latest being Hegaiamas: a song for freedom, released earlier this year. Currently, the band consists of original members Jon V. on Vocals and Ravaya on Guitars, and Anthony (who took a five-year hiatus 2005-2010) on Keyboards. Victor, Bass, and Stelios, Drums, both joined in 2013.
The band has been compared to Dream Theater and Wastefall, but obviously has been influenced by Savatage and Metallica (they recorded a version of “Jesus Saves” and “The Thing That Should Not Be,” available only on their Youtube channel) and also list Pantera, Fates Warning, Tool, Psychotic Waltz, Deftones, Nevermore, Porcupine Tree, Alice In Chains, Queensryche, and Anthrax as influences.
Thanks to my friend John Zahner of Stormbringer – and a founding member of Jon Oliva’s Pain – I was introduced to vocalist Jon before their show, and we chatted about our mutual acquaintances as I noticed he was wearing a T-Shirt from Jon Oliva’s Pain, which he later exchanged for a Savatage shirt that he wore for the show. My own knowledge of that group’s history goes back to when Savatage was Avatar, playing Busch Gardens in the early 1980s – about the time Jon was born! The band is doing a masterful job carrying that legacy forward, playing an energetic set as part of Evergrey’s “The Storm Within” Tour, which is going all over the USA and Canada this summer. The fact that their seven song album clocks in at an hour and 3 minutes attests to the fact that they aren’t a band looking to compete with the pop musicians and their 3:30 typical songs today, but rather are aiming at serious rockers who come to hear great music, and they deliver it well!
Check out the video from their latest album here: Rememory