KuttingEdge Promotions hosted their third annual Christmas benefit fundraiser at the Old Crow bar in Middle Saturday December 10. The Skull Dollz were there painting faces as eight bands from the area performed raising money and holiday cheer for four families in need. Some sweet autographed merch was raffled off along with signed band gear, guitars and tickets for upcoming events.
TUFF, Valora, Brooks & Dunn, The Nearly Deads, Misfits, Casey and the Nobodies, Saving Abel, She, Miley Cyrus all contributed signed gear and merch for the event along with two guitars and a large poster sized event flyer signed by all participating bands.
The 2016 lineup included Casey and the Nobodies, Shotgun Surprise, Dear Agony, Tyler Henry, Down Strange Charm, Saving Escape, Temper and Four Star Revival.
The evening started early with the evening’s MC and opener Chris Casey playing some covers and originals, breaking out an assortment of harmonicas, going Dylan on a few tunes. He knocked on heaven’s door gave Tom Petty some love along with a legendary visit to the “House of the Rising Sun” finishing with Mr. Young “Rockin’ in the Free World.”
Cincinnati’s Down Strange Charm started the sophomore set with a combination of classic, alt and hard rock. Starting in late 2015, they take lead from bands as diverse as Soul Asylum and Foo Fighters. They started with “Redemption Day.” They brought Dave Matthews and Bob Dylan together on “Line of Fine.” The full set included deeper titles like “Six Feet under.” They have an online only EP available.
From the sticks of Indiana where they practice in front of cows, according to bassist/vocalist Dale Spradling, came Shotgun Surprise. With father and daughter on mic/bass and guitar they jammed out some originals and covers. Mr. Idol got a loud, deserved “Rebel Yell.” They played tunes off their second record Aria Marie finishing with the ill-received anatomical effects of the devil’s whisky. The band also has The Aria Marie Foundation, a charity designed to help children at Christmas who’ve lost one or both parents.
Middletown’s Temper got heavier and thrashier with some choice words about deadbeat dads and being a poser. “Deadbeat” was a loud dedication to all the worthless donors of the world. “Own Your Sh-” said get your freakin life together and do something with it. They went black on the holy Sabbath with “Electric Funeral” and mid-‘90s on Pantera’s “Five Minutes Alone.”
Solo guitarist Tyler Henry came up and jammed, shredding on some backing tracks, suppling live lead guitar to Megadeth, Ozzy and Steve Vai classics. Henry started, honoring Mr. Mustaine on Rust in Peace’s “Five Magics” then Barked at the Moon with Ozzy and Zake E. Lee. He gave Vai his instrumental praise on “For the Love of God” ending with some modern “Holy Wars.”
The evenings newest, youngest blood Saving Escape led by YouTube sensation Kala Rose cranked out some originals and covers for the crowd that came alive, front and center for the mid-teens. Delivering talent and showmanship beyond their years they opened with a trip to Wichita with the White Stripes. Crobot received young praise on “Fly on the Wall.” They went old school, way before their time hanging with Joplin on “Take a Little Piece of My Heart” ending with the electric wizard on “Voodoo Child.”
Four Star Revival came up for some evening rip and roar, rip and tear. Their spiritually accented hard rock called out the liars and outlaws, putting them in a “Coldsweat.” The “Garden of Good and Evil” was the evening’s battleground. Sabbath got more love on “Children of the Grave.”
Due out January 13 on Headstone Records new EP single “The Underdog” came near the end, ending with everyone seeing some Christmas “Red.”
Dear Agony ended the evening with some moody, bluesy modern rock with alternative flare “Blink of an Eye” reared its late night blood shot head. “Face the Day” was louder, and a tad angrier on guitar flowing into a modern rock song and dance. They played some SOAD on “Chop Suey.” “Animals” tranquil, murky buildup signaled the end of the third annual benefit with an evening full of bands playing for a great cause and people. Dear Agony ended with some Dave Matthews meets Foo Fighters.
All proceeds went to the families in need. KuttingEdge has helped 12 families since the events inception.
Images by Mike Ritchie