By Robin Linn
When it comes to Slayer, I have often felt their influence when listening to Whiskey & Knives guitarist Jon Arnold. Jon has infused those speed metal type chops to a punk rock format within the songs of Family Butcher, a band that was a desert staple for over a decade. Jon’s approach to speedy metallic guitar within those 2 minute songs was quite unique. He is a talented guitarist with a predisposition for punk and metal that permeates his very being.
My taste in music was influenced by Jon over the years and I found it more than cool that his new project, W&K would be performing here in the desert opening for original Slayer drummer, Dave Lombardo’s newest project PHILM. Jon is a desert survivor, a punk rock musician who has overcome the evils of addiction and fought and won a serious battle with cancer. He has found the passion for his instrument and creating music the constant that pushed him forward. Today he has really come into his own with Whiskey and Knives.
Frontman, Jason Beasley’s vocal approach features a rap sensibility coupled with wild hard rock melodies that can be reminiscent of early Iron Maiden at moments and Rage Against The Machine at others. The band also features drummer Alfredo Hernandez, who has played with nearly every critically acclaimed hard rock and punk project in the desert including Queens of the Stone Age, Family Butcher, Hot Beat Pussy Fiend, Rawbone and Brave Black Sea, who has a new record out on V2 Records April 7th.
Within the framework of W&K, Alfredo works together with bassist Mike Smith to form a driving rhythm section, a wall of sound, fierce and unrelenting. I have seen the band four times now and I love them more each show. They embrace the spirit of the desert and a sound that is vintage metal. They will be playing on March 28th along with Dave Lombardo and PHILM at Schmidy’s Tavern in Palm Desert and heavy metal music fans don’t want to miss this world class rock show. Schmidy’s is a music friendly venue that offers an intimate setting and hosts live music every weekend year round. For only $10 and zero travel time, fans can expect one hell of a hard rock show featuring two of the most innovative drummers in hard rock. I call this my dream drummer showcase!
Whiskey & Knives: www.facebook.com/whiskeyandknives