Baroness Rocks Buffalo: A Captivating Night at the Town Ballroom
The law of diminishing marginal returns states that the more of any product we consume, the less we'll enjoy it each time. This was one of the first lessons I remember learning in economics my freshman year in college. Surprisingly, it applies to virtually everything.
One thing that does not seem to adhere to this principle, and in fact, I've found the opposite to be true, is watching Baroness in concert. This band gets better every single time I see them. As a lifelong Metallica fan, I remember first seeing Baroness at the Orion Music and More Festival in Atlantic City back in 2012. The band came with a fair amount of hype as having been hand-picked by Metallica (James Hetfield, if I'm not mistaken).
The following year, Orion Festival held its second (and presumably last) outing in Detroit, Michigan. While Baroness wasn't on the lineup this year, John Baizley's art was on full display, being the featured artist for an incredible interpretation of Metallica's "The Four Horsemen" on both a t-shirt and an artist-signed poster. I bought the shirt, but still regret passing on the poster.
A few years later, and Baroness was once again hand-picked to open for a historic venue-opening show by Metallica at Quebec City's new arena, Le Centre Vidéotron in September of 2015. Finally, I caught another festival performance at Rock on the Range in Columbus, Ohio back in 2018 and was completely taken aback at the command this band had for their stage. Maybe it was me all the time, but the groove-heavy brand of metal that was thrown in my face that day completely sold me on this band. They were one of the surprise highlights of the day amongst my entire group, and we each began to dive into the catalog a bit on our own following that weekend's festival.
Finally, after a COVID pause (and a missed opportunity at the request tour a few years ago) I had the chance to properly cover a Baroness headlining show! The Town Ballroom was quite full, which is no small feat for a Sunday night when the Bills are playing!
Baroness took the stage shortly after the Bills blew a completely winnable game to the Philadelphia Eagles in overtime. Opening the show up with "Last Word" from their current album 'Stone.' The crowd was immediately engaged. This was exactly the catharsis that Buffalo needed tonight!
"A Horse Called Golgotha" was an immediate standout to me. From the looks of the crowd, I wasn't alone! By this point, about fifteen minutes into the set, Baroness owned the place! Immediately following was "March to the Sea," one of the biggest hits in the catalog. Another of my personal favorites, "Beneath the Rose" was just around the corner. After a brief instrumental pause for "Green Theme," they ripped into "Anodyne," another monster from their latest album. The main set concluded with "Shock Me" before the band returned and finished the show with "The Gnashing" and "Take My Bones Away."
This show was in the final string of dates on this tour, but they already have a few festival dates on the calendar for 2024 including both Welcome to Rockville and Sonic Temple, both taking place in May! I've you've caught this band a few times already, then you know what a great show you're in for. If you're still on the fence and trying to figure this band out, go and check out a show! If they're playing at a festival you're attending, make the time to go see their stage!
The Sweetest Curse
A Horse Called Golgotha
March to the Sea
Beneath the Rose
If I Have to Wake Up (Would you Stop the Rain?) / Fugue
Under the Wheel
Take My Bones Away