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Concert Review: ISLANDER at Aftershock Live Music Venue

Photo: Mike Kennedy

Islander at Aftershock Live Music Venue in Merriam, KS – 21 February 2017

Touring in support of the Power Under Control album, and direct support for I Prevail on the Lifelines 2017 tour, Greenville, South Carolina’s Islander bring a heavy edge to the tour. Slotted as direct support for I Prevail, many of those unfamiliar with Islander are soon in the throes of a full blown “rock show” as singer Mikey Carvajal calls out those on the floor standing still. At that exact moment as the band wails into “Devil Red” off 2016’s Power and Control release, a circle pit erupts directly to my left. Twenty-somethings everywhere in the venue are moshing like it was 1985 and the immortal Bad Brains were on stage. For an old crusty punk, this was a sight for sore eyes. Islander has always been compared to bands like the Deftones and Korn, but with a slightly heavier edge and a little more punk rock than the aforementioned bands. As they blazed through their set featuring the classic “Rabbit’s Foot” off the Pains EP released in 2013, the crowd was eating up the showmanship that Mr. Carvajal provided. Crowd surfing, walking on the hands of the crowd ala Jacoby Shaddix, hanging upside down from the venue rafters while continuing to sing “Darkness” off the Power Under Control disc is trademark Islander, and the fact that their merch booth was packed after their set is a testament to Islander and the show they provide.

I was able to sit down with Mikey after the show and ask him a few questions about the new record, the tour with I Prevail, his connection with HR from Bad Brains, and Kansas City Barbeque.

Antihero: Good to see you again brother! Tell me how the response to Power Under Control has been?

Mikey Carvajal: It’s been awesome, bro. We’ve been taking it one day at a time like always, but we have received a lot of love on this record.

Antihero: HR, from Bad Brains, has been featured on all three Islander recordings. How did you meet him?

Mikey Carvajal: He was only on two of them, actually. But I met him because of the drummer to his solo band. He’s the real deal and it’s been an honor working with him on songs. I’ve learned a lot from that dude.

Antihero: How’s the tour with I Prevail going so far?

Mikey Carvajal: It’s honestly been one of our favorite tours we’ve been on. Every single band is extremely nice and we feel like a family out here. I love the I Prevail guys.

Antihero: Did you get any KC Barbeque while you were in town?

Mikey Carvajal: Yep. It was provided by the promoter!

Antihero: Good to see you again Mikey! Hope to see you soon.

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