Narcotic Wasteland @ Riff House Pub

By on January 2, 2018

Photographed and written by Robert Escue

On a wet, rainy December 6th, Narcotic Wasteland performed at the Riff House Pub with tour support from Extinction Level Event and local support from Rotten.Rotten kicked off the night with a 30 minute set of songs from their 2016 effort “Rotting to Death”. Rotten has become one of the go to bands in the Hampton Roads area due to their no nonsense approach to thrash and death metal.

Extinction Level Event was down by one bass player so I am not sure that we got to experience the band full strength. They have been compared to Meshuggah in sound, since I don’t listen to Meshuggah I have no frame of reference. Since it was their last night on the road with Narcotic Wasteland, they had fun and Gavin Grace, the lead singer danced around while singing.

Narcotic Wasteland was also down a member as well, guitarist Edwin Rhone was not present at the show. The band played a selection of songs from their two albums “Narcotic Wasteland” and “Delirium Tremens” in a thirteen song set. I talked to a couple of friends about going to the show and they were going to give it a pass since they thought Dallas Toler-Wade was writing music that was busting on people on drugs. The songs on both albums are not a send-up like GWAR, but a stinging note of political commentary on the cold, drugged out reality for many living in the Fayetteville, North Carolina area. Songs like “Faces of Meth” and “Keeping Up with the Jones” resonated with me and gave me pause. The band was tight and Chris Dupre’s vocals were incredible and complemented Dallas’ nicely.

For the people who managed to make it out on a Wednesday night, it was one of the best shows in the Hampton Roads area for 2017.