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Sweetness at the Picador

BY TOMMY MORGAN JR. | JANUARY 28, 2010 7:30 AM

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Raise the Red Lantern has one simple goal: sweetness.

The metal band plans to showcase this when it plays at the Picador, 330 E. Washington St., at 9 p.m. Saturday in a 19-and-over show. Iowa City-based band Snow Demon will also perform.

With most of them having been together for almost five years, the members of Chicago’s Red Lantern believe they have hit their stride and found their sound.

Guitarist Dylan Patterson said the group began as a punk outfit before undergoing a period of re-evaluation. After some time off, the band members decided to go in a different, heavier direction.

“It just felt pretty natural,” Patterson said. “A lot of it had to do with our new drummer.”

When the band brought on drummer Jim Staffel, it opted for metal over punk. Last year, the band released a self-titled album highlighting the new metal sound, which the members wrote with Staffel at the drums.

The reason for switching genres? Patterson said metal gave the band freedom to explore broader ideas.

“[We] try to come out and lay out some heavy riffs, man,” the guitarist said. “We’re pretty much just all about the heavy riffs.”

The love of riffs translates into the Red Lantern’s live shows, in which, Patterson said, the band members try “to deliver a pretty pummeling set” whenever they take the stage. He also referred to the band’s music as “sweet metal.”

“[We] try to take every club to the maximum we can take it to,” Patterson said.

And even though the musicians have found a direction they’re comfortable with, they’re by no means complacent, he said.

In describing the band’s latest album, he said, “It’s a good starting point for what we’re going to do in the future” and the band will see “what comes next now that we’re settled in.”


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