Bryan Raydo, where are you? The high school classmate who introduced me to industrial music back in the early 90’s would have taken luxurious pleasure in watching the three bands who proudly embrace the ethic of industrial music while fleshing out their individually unique directions.

My early 1990’s introduction to industrial music came while riding down Creighton Road in his older brother’s newly purchased, frequently used white Ford Mustang and Raydo popped a worn out copy of Ministry’s album “The Mind is a Terrible Thing to Taste” into the cassette player. The same car stereo that produced my first taste of Mike Patton’s mentally genius madness known as Mr. Bungle was now thundering a beautifully David Cronenberg style crash of metal and dance compositions intertwined with fragmented clips of sound bytes and machinery. I was completely drawn inside this compelling new creature. With a unique edge and severing a heavy slice of individuality throughout the music landscape of that time, many sub-genres were born since Ministry’s chief architect, Al Jourgenson grabbed my throat and throttled his sound into my ear.

Created by the mind of Jason Beatty, the first group on The Handlebar stage were Transfer Case. Enlisting the guitar work of Vik Kaos (Michael Graham) for this night’s performance, Beatty elicited dark synth tones to compliment his vocal word play. With an album entitled “New World” soon to be released, the next Transfer Case performance will be on July 4th at the Big Ez Tavern with Strap on Halo and the Harem Key.

Following Transfer Case were Orlando group Preacher. Supported by the trio of vocalist Maus and synth players Heirboxen and Kert Rotten, Preacher erected a pulpit displaying their symbol while they performed their set of self-described metal, industrial and anti-dance music.

Providing the most theatrical set of the night were local group Finite Automata. Founded by Dom Price, the Finite Automata project has been performing Price’s creations since 2005. Breathing life to the group’s vision were keyboardist Grendel (Christopher Stanley) and “guitarist/gadgetrist” Mat Pathetic (Mat Porter).

With an upcoming tour and growing regional support, the group’s performance punctuated the fact that industrial music has the power to engage and throttle those that are willing to take the chance. Thank you, Bryan Raydo…wherever you are.

-Michael L. Smith