The Independents from South Carolina have been cranking out amazing music and great tours since ’92 and are well worth checking out.

Managed by Joey Ramone from 1995 until his passing in 2001, The Independents have a large following and a deep fan base. They pride themselves on doing what they want, when they want, and their music reflects that desire. With a foundation of ska, punk, and a touch of horror thrown in for good measure, Evil Presley and Willy Bee rock on stage. The Independents are hard-working musicians and have been known to tour for as long as ten months a year spreading their brand of, “unique, highly energetic, party-esque, horror-influenced music”, as described in their official bio. With a resume that includes opening for the Ramones, Misfits, Rancid, Cheap Trick, Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Less Than Jake, and Blondie, these guys are talented and obviously get around.

Willy and Evil returned to Fort Wayne, Indiana on Friday the 13th for the first time since their newest album Into the Light was released. They played a great mix of new songs and old favorites in a long set that the crowd loved. Evil Presley has a great stage presence and nice full and smooth vocals. Willy Bee is a genius on guitar. Van Heller, from such horror bands as Children of October and The B Movie Monsters, joined the guys on the most recent tours on bass. A local drummer, Adam Lewis from the Lurking Corpses, filled in on drums and did an amazing job.

The Independents never disappoint and such was the case this Friday the 13th. Filling the room with fog and loud rock and roll followed by bubbles at some point pretty much sums up The Independents and the fun they have on stage.

The Independents online:

Opening for The Independents was a local staple Atom Age Vampire. Atom Age Vampire opened for The Misfits last time they were in town and brought the goods to a large crowd. I am equally impressed by their sound and the originality of their music at this show. After a recent change in lead vocals, I was interested in seeing Atom Age Vampire in this new line up and they did not disappoint. Their rich-rocky sound and catchy vocals draw you in and get you moving. They have the talent and the drive to do well and the recent changes did not affect their delivery and they seemed tighter than ever.

Atom Age Vampire online: