Marty Friedman, Immortal Guardian at 89th St. Collective (2019)

89th St. Collective (Oklahoma City, OK, USA)

Marty Friedman, Immortal Guardian
MARTY FRIEDMAN brought his "One Bad M.F." tour to Oklahoma City's 89th St. Collective on […]
By Dave Nowels
February 4, 2019

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MARTY FRIEDMAN brought his "One Bad M.F." tour to Oklahoma City's 89th St. Collective on Monday 2/4. Touring in support of his new live collection of the same name on Prosthetic Records, Friedman and his incomparable band blew collective minds and left many an ear ringing. Seeing Marty and this band live is an absolute treat, and a show that must not be missed if he's coming to your town. Trust me on this.

Taking the stage to the legendary MARVIN GAYE's "Let's Get It On" playing on the PA, Marty and band quickly and unceremoniously settled in, and launched into an exciting "L.A. High Ball" and then right into "Hyper Doom". A devil may care breakneck pace, tempo changes, and improvisation, all already achieved in the first ten minutes. It really is something special to witness it live and up close in such a small intimate setting. It's hard to single out highlights when the whole show exceeds expectations. The three song segment of "Devil Take Tommorrow", "For A Friend" and "Ninja" certainly stand out. But the back to back pairing of "Whiteworm" and "Self Pollution" was hard to beat too. However you want to look at it, there was something here for everyone and every song was played exceptionally well.

Without question, Friedman is one hell of a guitar player. A sorely overlooked musician and composer that continues his evolution as a solo artist seemingly under the radar. Most want to focus on his time spent with MEGADETH. Undoubtedly, his contributions during that tenure were profound. Arguably the "Marty years" of MEGADETH are the most beloved by fans, with "Rust in Peace" and "Countdown to Extinction" held in many eyes as Thrash Metal classics. But, Marty is much, much more than just your typical Thrash shredder. His solo career post MEGADETH, is a testament to that, with simply brilliant releases such as "Wall of Sound" showing a much more universal and accessible sound.

But here's the thing....on any given night, Marty might not even be the best musician on stage. I have no doubt he'd be the first to say it, and would give all credit and accolades to his fabulous band. What a band it is, Jordan Ziff on second guitar, Kiyoshi Manii on bass and the simply incredible Chargeeee on drums. This band as a collective unit owns the stage they're playing on like few I've ever seen. Each musician knows their role, and does their best to make one another shine. It's like a damn family up on that stage. Each member gets their time in the spotlight each night. Ziff is quite the player himself, and Friedman ensures he gets his lead licks in. But Ziff's real value is in creating that wondrous guitar harmony with Friedman. On this tour Ziff's spotlight segment is a fun take on QUEEN's "Bohemian Rhapsody", with the audience providing the vocals while the guitars wail.

Kiyoshi's 5 string bass work is breathtaking to witness. Her finger/slap style darts her notes in and out like an assassin's knife, striking and gone before you even realize they were there. How her name isn't mentioned in the same breath as the more revered bass players of the genre is a travesty. Kiyoshi recently released her own solo album, "Kiyoshi 3", which we were treated to hearing pre show. It's an album in Japanese, and is simply vocals, bass and drums. I really enjoyed it. Last but certainly not least, Chargeee might be one of the best drummers in metal. Think Tommy Lee in his prime. He's amazing to watch, and his never ending energy unquestionably provides the backbone to support the rest of the band.

Opening the evening was Austin's IMMORTAL GUARDIAN. These guys put on a really fun set of music as well. They've got a cool NWOBHM vibe going and won over a bunch of new fans. A four piece comprised of Gabriel Guardian on guitar and keys (often simultaneously!), Thad Stevens on bass, Cody Gilliand on drums, and the fabulous Carlos Zema on vocals. These guys are touring with Marty Friedman in support of their new album, "Age of Revolution" which is available via their Bandcamp page. This is a really talented band that executes some technical headbanging Classic style Metal very well. They've got a confident stage presence, that has been honed from sharing the stage with JUDAS PRIEST, STEVE VAI, SLAYER, METAL CHURCH and more metal heavyweights. Don't miss these guys if given a chance.

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