Generation Doom Tour
May 14, 2016
St. Petersburg, Florida
You could feel the electricity in the air as the crowd of concert-goers began to chant Otep! Otep! Otep! Metal horns and fists were waving wildly as Otep took the stage somewhere around 10:30pm. As the first guitar chord rang out, vocalist, Otep Shamaya hit the stage with a burst of energy and she is simply mesmerizing to watch. This is exactly what a live performance should be. She immediately connects with the crowd as they seem to unite into one human ocean. I can’t count the times that I’ve been to rock concerts, only to see the band look bored and simply go through the motions. If you go see Otep, on her current Generation Doom tour, you will get every dollars worth of your ticket price and then some.
With a vocal range from soft and pure to guttural and aggressive sounding, Otep has crafted a new take on all things metal. Occasionally, exhibiting a bouncing rhythm similar to hip hop styling and powerful guitar heavy grooves, Otep Shamaya is an innovator. The band also did something that I absolutely love. Often, you go to a concert and they play one or two songs from the current album at the most, and then run through a greatest hits package. Many of the songs that have made Otep a household name were played, but the set list was really heavy on songs from the current album, Generation Doom. With six albums of material released prior to Generation Doom, there was plenty to choose from. And although, I’ve enjoyed them all, the new album may be the best of her career so far. Hearing and seeing these songs performed live for the first time, you get a real sense of what a great artist Otep is. With a look that’s similar to characters in the futuristic Mad Max films, Otep not only sounds great, but also brings an element of performance art and theater to the show. With interesting props ranging from fire at her finger tips to a decapitated boar’s head, the show is a spectacle to behold. Besides the great visual performance, there is something real and genuine about Otep Shamaya that’s rarely seen these days. She wears her heart on her sleeve when it comes to making her thoughts known about society and in particular, those who would hold back, deny or repress those who wish to live their lives freely. She shows strong support for the LGBT community and encourages everyone to be proud of their true selves. These sentiments ring true in her lyrics as well, as songs like Equal Rights, Equal Lefts, Lords Of War and Zero, all of which were performed live, speak loudly about social injustice and equality for all. For the encore, Otep performed her remake of the Lorde song, Royals as her tribute to all of those in the working class who’ve worked for everything that they’ve earned. After the show ended, the singer stayed and met every single fan who supported the band and signed any and all merchandise that they bought. It’s rare to see a celebrity that’s a true working class hero, but Otep Shamaya is all of the above. If you get a chance to catch them on tour, you won’t regret it. It’s also worth noting that all of the supporting acts on the bill were top notch acts in their own right. So, check the tour schedule and get your ticket for the Generation Doom Tour now.