We are just days away from Rocklahoma 2017; who are you excited to see this year? This week we turn our focus on the state of Texas, with four bands set to bring high energy performances to the stage. Black Tora and Ratchet Dolls are representing southern Texas, while Death Grip from Dallas and London’s Dungeon from Fort Worth are joining other bands from northern Texas. These four bands bring a variety of musical talent, from hard rock to power metal. Rocklahoma 2017 is sure to be an exciting and entertaining three days for everyone who attends.
Black Tora, from McAllen, Texas, formed in 2008 and have released three albums, the full length Rise of the Tora in 2009, an EP Raise Your Fists in 2012 and their most recent work, a second full length album Black Tora, was released in 2014. The band consists of Chris Daniel on vocals and bass, Razor Dave on guitars and Nicky X on drums. Black Tora incorporates elements of power metal, thrash metal and hard rock, resulting in complex melodies and full, rich textures throughout their songs. Chris Daniel’s gritty vocals and rich, deep bass playing are complimented by strong, thunderous beats from Nicky X on drums. Razor Dave is dynamic on guitar, creating bold and robust solos, as well as vibrant riffs. Black Tora has played Rocklahoma in the past and many fans are no doubt looking forward to their performance this year.
Ratchet Dolls from Brownsville, Texas, formed in 2010 and quickly gained notice throughout the region. The band signed with Rock Angels Management and released their self-titled debut EP Ratchet Dolls in 2013. Ratchet Dolls are comprised of Kevin Sauceda on lead vocals and lead guitar, Sam Longoria on guitar and vocals, Frank Salinas on bass and JJ Gomez on drums. Sauceda leads the band with dynamic vocals punctuated by high-pitched screams, along with his guitar mastery marked by searing solos. Longoria adds backing vocals and exciting riffs, while Salinas and Gomez supply deep rich bass and pounding beats accompanied by crisp cymbals to create a sound that incorporates traditional rock, hard rock and glam metal elements. The band just released their debut full-length album Damaged and will be touring in support of their latest effort. As Rocklahoma veterans, Ratchet Dolls’ set is expected to be one of the highlights at the festival.
Dallas, Texas is the birth place of heavy metal band Deathgrip. Their debut album is scheduled for release in 2017 and a video for their first release “Demonizer” is available on YouTube. The band is made up of veteran Texas musicians, Matt Story on vocals, Jimi Fritz and Paul Fritz on guitars, Bryan Lunos on bass and Scott Baughn on drums. Deathgrip has created powerful heavy metal combining Story’s dynamic vocals, which are fierce and growling with occasional high pitched wails, a duel assault of guitars from brothers Jimi and Paul Fritz, with robust riffs and scorching solos. Lunos and Baughn deliver heavy thumping rhythm on bass and magnetic, booming drums. This is a band who will deliver a strong live performance sure to excite Rocklahoma fans.
2011 saw the formation of London’s Dungeon in Fort Worth, Texas. The four piece hard rock band has toured extensively throughout the United States, with notable performances at the famous Whiskey a Go Go in Hollywood, as well as performing several years at Rocklahoma. The band is comprised of Paul London on vocals, Cody Joe Pope on guitar, Kurt Arft on bass and Talon Blaque on drums. London’s steely rasp, along with Pope’s piercing solos, Arft’s heavy, deep bass and Blaque’s strong, driving drums come together to create the distinctive heavy and dark, hard rock that is London’s Dungeon. With five years of experience performing at Rocklahoma, London’s Dungeon will be a set fans look forward to seeing over Memorial Weekend.
The wait is almost over, and with a slew of bands from Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas, the spotlight will be shining bright on our region. Rocklahoma is a huge event for the small town of Pryor, as well as the entire state of Oklahoma. All the bands we will cover over Memorial Weekend have worked hard to get to this point in their career and there are several exceptional acts who will soon make the jump to the national level. Regional Music Journal is excited to cover all the performers this year.
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