A new and unlikely supergroup took the stage in Brooklyn last night, as The Damned Things – a band consisting of members of Anthrax, Fall Out Boy, and Every Time I Die – played their first-ever live show at the Knitting Factory. Consisting of Every Time I Die vocalist Keith Buckley, Anthrax guitarists Scott Ian and Rob Caggiano, and Fall Out Boy guitarist Joe Trohman and drummer Andy Hurley (along with ETID bassist Josh Newton), the band’s inaugural show was a combination of the strong points of all three bands’ styles, and a look forward to what their debut album, due out later this year, will sound like.
Essentially a side project for Anthrax and Every Time I Die while Fall Out Boy are on an indefinite hiatus, all three bands stand to benefit from The Damned Things if the new project takes off. As the least commercially successful of the three bands, ETID can increase their profile beyond just the Warped Tour crowd. Written of by many as emo, the Fall Out Boy members stand to get some of their pre-FOB hardcore and metal cred back by aligning themselves with the two other bands. And Anthrax simply get to show anyone under 25 that they’re actually a band and not just some guy with a crazy beard on VH1 talking about metal. Fortunately, it seemed like everyone involved, both the band and the audience, had fun, and their nine song, 40-minute set seemed half as long.
Opening with “Ironiclast,” one of two rough mixes just posted on their MySpace page, The Damned Things quickly showed itself to be a hybrid of the three bands. To be sure, it’s later-era Anthrax that the band had the most in common with, as songs like “Bad Blood” had the riffs and tempo of songs like “Fueled” from 1995’s Stomp 442. Combined with catchy choruses that wouldn’t sound out of place on a Fall Out Boy album, and the distinctive voice of Buckley, the band definitely has a distinct sound of their own.
The eight songs from the band’s upcoming album, along with a cover of Quicksand’s “Fazer” that Buckley said the band had just learned, had the crowd enthusiastically nodding their heads throughout the set. Whether The Damned Things turns into a full-on band or ultimately winds up being a side project, they got off to a promising start yesterday, with instant onstage chemistry that will not only satisfy fans of all three of its’ original bands, but also make new ones in the process.