Kansas City’s 98.9 The Rock hosted it’s annual Twisted Xmas event on December 18th at Arvest Bank Theater at The Midland with Islander, Otherwise, Nothing More and Pop Evil as it’s main event. The show was also known as the $9.89 Low Dough Show as general admission tickets cost only $9.89. This annual event is one of the most anticipated events Kansas City locals like to catch during the winter season and at the end of the year as it’s a chance to rock out one more time before the madness of the holiday season reaches it’s peak the following week. Pop Evil headlining this year’s show was a good choice, as well as having Islander, Otherwise and Nothing More to fill the bill with 4 very unique and incredible live bands.
Shortly after the doors were opened and people scurried indoors to step out of the cold, Islander took to the stage to set the tone and energy for the evening. The South Carolina natives, Mikey Carvajal (lead vocals), Chris Doot (bass guitar), J.R. Bareis (Lead/Rhythm Guitar) and Eric Frazier (drums) delivered tracks off of their 2014 album, Violence & Destruction (Victory Records), such as “Coconut Dracula.” Mikey didn’t take too long before he literally stepped out into the crowd to hold hands with fans and “walk” on top of the crowd as he continued performing song after song. J.R.’s dressing room requirements of a pair of pants and a tail makes sense when you see him sporting his tail on stage during the show. After their high energy set, Islander greeted fans at their Victory Records merchandise booth.
With a short break and stage setup change, the quintet from Las Vegas, known as Otherwise took the stage next with Corky Gainsford (drums/percussion) entering first as Andy Pugh (rhythm guitar/vocals), Ryan Patrick (rhythm guitar/vocals), Vassilios Metropoulos (bass guitar) and Adrian Patrick (lead vocals) followed. This performance treated the audience to tracks off of the recently released Peace At All Costs (Another Century) album such as “Darker Side of the Moon” while also delivering chart topping hits like “Soldiers” from the previous album, True Love Never Dies (Century Media). During “Soldiers,” lucky fans were invited onstage to sing and hang with the band as they performed the song. Unbeknownst to most fans, this would be one of the last performances with Vassilios on bass guitar as it was announced the very next day by the band that he would be leaving to move on to other pursuits. Otherwise also greeted fans at their merchandise booth following their performance.
Bringing it’s unique live stage show to the Midland next were the boys from San Antonio, Texas known as Nothing More. Jonny Hawkins (lead vocals/extra percussion) entered the stage and charged the extra drum instrument in the front of the stage while, Daniel Oliver (bass guitar/vocals), Mark Vollelunga (rhythm guitar/vocals) and Paul Obrien (drums/percussion) entered the stage. The self-made stage instrument/creations that the band had made were used throughout the performance as they performed recent radio hits off of their album, Nothing More (Eleven Seven Music), like “Mr. MTV” and “This is the Time (Ballast).” Nothing More also greeted fans following their performance.
With a high energy crowd anticipating the last and final band to perform for the evening, Pop Evil entered the stage and immediately continued that high energy by opening their set with “Deal With The Devil” off of their album, Onyx (eOne Music). The boys from Michigan, Leigh Kakaty (lead vocals), Nick Fuelling (rhythm guitar/vocals), Dave Grahs (rhythm guitar/vocals), Matt DiRito (bass guitar/vocals) and Josh Marunde (aka Chachi Riot)(drums/percussion) also treated fans to hits off of War of Angels, such as “Last Man Standing” and “Boss’s Daughter.” Other hits off of Onyx, such as “Beautiful,” “Torn To Pieces” and “Trenches” were sung word for word by the audience. Pop Evil had a meet and greet package available for their fans, also known as EVILZ.
For $9.89, it definitely was beyond worth it for the four unique bands that rocked out The Midland and took the time to meet fans before, during and after the show.