I had no idea what to expect with Soul Descenders, the first of four bands playing for Story of the Year's CD release for The Constant. As it turned out, these boys rocked out like guitar heroes. Hair whips, on-the-knees-shredding, and powerstances.
As I tweeted just after their set, I do love photographing metal. There's an inherent energy in the music that has the capacity to translate into really dynamic concert photography. And even if the stage treatment is dark, that kinetic power manages to still come through.
In addition, it's always a nice surprise to be basically blown away by the first act of the night. Sure, the night was pretty dim, but when a band's frontman goes down on his knees at the edge of the stage to shred, lighting takes a backseat to buckling down and nailing the shot.
Besides, red light is pretty metal. ISO 6400, f/2.8, and 1/40 got the job done.
As I've mentioned before, I think there's a really nice freedom that can come with photographing opening bands. The same lack of pressure to deliver or even skip the set can be used to push through the challenges of bad light and crazy motion to bring home something more lasting.