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Sweet 16 Tour with Aurelio Voltaire and Bella Morte @ Club Red

Monday, time for alchemy and Aurelio Voltaire. The only problem is it wasn’t a Monday and I left my alchemy set for young goths at home. Truth be told, I had been waiting for this show for a long time. Long before the show was announced, I was keeping my ear to the ground. Holding on to hope that Aurelio Voltaire would be coming back to Arizona, the fates often directing him close but not close enough. The wait was worth it though as it was one hell of a night.

Opening the night was one of my favorite local bands, the Spider Hole. If you like energetic, wild, and sometimes jazzy gothic cabaret, then you should check these guys. Whenever they take the stage, it’s far more than live music but a theatrical performance. Ethan Scott (Vocals) brandishes a powerful voice paired with the moves that shows the level of passion and enjoyment the Spider Hole has working together. Personally, I find they are more enjoyable when they bring guest musician Andy Marcantel (Keys) with them. Furthermore, they hold a spot on my list of bands who perform covers better than the original. With the Spider Hole, they have really improved on “St. James Infirmary Blues.” The Spider Hole will be launching a Kickstarter for their next album either late this year or early next year. I can say it’ll be something spectacular after hearing some of their new songs.

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Then came the first of the co-headliners of the night, Bella Morte. I hadn’t listened to Bella Morte before seeing them play live. At first, I wasn’t entirely sure what to think of them. The first thing I noticed was the energy and movement as they performed on stage. While I wasn’t sure if I liked their sound to begin with, it swiftly grew on me as I relaxed and let myself enjoy it. With Bella Morte’s playful jabs at Aurelio Voltaire, they gave a great show full of pleasantly somber music, laughter, and carefully honed stage presence. By the end of their set, the performance had gone by too quickly. Bella Morte saying goodbye was like falling asleep on a train to wake just as you reach your stop. All the pleasant dreams that you never wanted to end to be dissolve by cold reality that all things must come to an end.

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Finally, Aurelio Voltaire walked on stage. Yet, as the crowd hollered in revelry, the show wasn’t ready to commence. Once Aurelio Voltaire had tuned his guitar and ensured he was ready, we were politely asked to pretend he was walking out for the first time. The audience, myself included, obliged. Each time I’ve seen Aurelio Voltaire perform live, it has been a worthwhile experience of humor and music. In between songs, Aurelio Voltaire took to telling stories. Some were about Bella Morte, some were about his own life. The ones I find to be the most alluring and touching are the stories of his childhood. Aurelio Voltaire’s stories put his music into a distinct perspective. If you ever stumble upon Aurelio Voltaire in the wild and he has the time for it, I’d highly recommend you ask him to tell one or two. If you aren’t a fan of stories, there is still the benefit of being soothed by the sultry voice of the Cuban goth artist. Aurelio Voltaire’s latest album, Heart-Shaped Wound, released this August and his next live performance will be on October 7th, 2017 at Realms Con in Corpus Christi, Texas.

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It was a hell of a night that I know won’t be happening again any time in the near future. But there was one more thing I needed to do before calling it a night, crawling home, and pretending that I was dead in my own bed. Just over a year ago, I attempted a voice acting competition that would offer me the opportunity to read creepypastas on the internet. While I was trying to share the link to my entry and not getting my hopes up that others would do the same, Aurelio Voltaire surprised me. Not only was he voting for me to win but he shared the link. It blew my mind to have the kind gentleman, Aurelio Voltaire, sharing my shot in the dark. I knew in that moment I owed him a drink. Know that I paid my promised debt to the man and we exchanged pleasant and somewhat secretive goodbyes before ending the night. Aurelio Voltaire, it’s always a pleasure to see you in Arizona. I’ve encountered so many of my favorite local bands by attending Aurelio Voltaire’s shows and I’m always surprised to find the latest sound I’ve been missing out on through him. May this trend continue.


All photos are taken by Pardo Photography.

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