All Time Highs hits the Bottom of the Hill
By Jesse Amazeen | May 18, 2016
Who: All Time Highs
When: May 12, 2016
Where: Bottom of the Hill, San Francisco
Explosive. There you go, a one-word review. OK, there’s more to the story, but I really could stop there. Witnessing All Time Highs is akin to standing in front of a blast furnace wearing a suit made of ice cream. Expectations melt away as you’re enveloped in the searing sounds of ATH’s blistering twin-guitar onslaught, and vocal acrobatics.
Singer Mark Osegueda (of Death Angel fame) proved his versatility yet again Thursday night, as ATH played for a small but energetic crowd at one of the Bay Area’s best nightclubs, the Bottom of the Hill. But let’s be clear, this is not merely some glorified side project of Mark’s—ATH has practically reinvented hard rock with their blend of in-your-face riffs, metal-tinged vocals, and a world-class rhythm section. Bass player Sammy Diosdado lays down the bottom end like a man possessed, and defies the traditionally laid-back role of his position, all while complementing the simple, yet thundering sound of drummer Sean Boyles.
And while I can’t speak definitively about their influences, it seems safe to say that bands like AC/DC, Motörhead, and maybe even the Ramones had a role in shaping the direction of their music. Effortlessly fusing retro-styled melodies like those on “Sweet Avalon” with the searing riffs of “On Her Knees”, All Time Highs creates a high-octane live sound that demands your attention.
Ripping through an hour long set, consisting mainly of songs from their two studio releases – 2006’s Demo EP, and 2007’s Oaktown EP, ATH paused to belt out a cover of Fastway’s “Say What You Will” in epic form. Guitarists Jason Lucero, and Mike Treloar easily handled the anthemic metal classic, infusing it with the passion it deserves. Closing out the set with the punk-infused “Ugly Truth”, ATH showed no signs of fatigue, stopping only to make way for the headlining act, who had the unenviable job of following one of the greatest live bands on the planet.
But if you were hoping to catch All Time Highs live, don’t hold your breath—this was the first of only three stops on their current run of West Coast dates. Aptly titled The 3 Day 3 Way tour, this run also included a night at Hollywood’s Viper Room, and another in Las Vegas, at Count’s Vamp’d. Prior to this show, their last stop in San Francisco was in late 2014. Surely, they will return, but in the meantime, you can download both of their EP’s here: alltimehighs.bandcamp.com.
Say What You Will
Love(An addiction Song), and Sweet Avalon
Divinity & On Her Knees
Rock n’ Roll Chaos Delight
On Her Knees
Star-studded Heart Breaker
Love (An Addiction Song)
I Love The Devil
Say What You Will (Fastway cover)
Party With Me