Helmet 

8 p.m. Friday, July 25. Rockstar Nightclub, 8658 South Broadway

By the time Helmet released its seminal 1992 album Meantime, metal had become a caricature of itself, bastardized by cheesy hair bands and leather-clad tough guys. Helmet's low-key, T-shirt-and-jeans aesthetic and the sludgy simplicity of its drop-tuned chunking, on the other hand, was a breath of fresh air, bringing plenty of raw energy to the table but checking the pretense at the door. Singer/guitarist Page Hamilton's melodies channeled the darkness of Black Sabbath but with an innovative post-hardcore dissonance and carefully placed mathiness that set the stage for the unlikely success of other understated post-rock bands like Failure and Hum later in the '90s.

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