UNH Band Takes on Toad’s Place


WEST HAVEN–Balancing school, work, and a hobby is no small feat. Luckily for sophomore Spencer Haddad, all of this balancing has paved his way to the place “where legends play.” Haddad and his band Perish Hill have managed to obtain a gig at one of the most coveted venues in the New Haven area: Toad’s Place.

The metal band will join close to 30 acts for the 1Loud Street Music Festival being held at Toad’s Place this Sunday, Dec. 14. Bands from all around the New Haven area will perform all day starting at noon to support Ground Control, a drunk driving awareness organization.
The festival is no doubt a big step for Perish Hill, based out of lead guitarist Haddad’s hometown of Norwich, Conn. “So far, the 1Loud Street Music Festival seems like it’s going to be a really good time,” Haddad said, “It’s also for a good cause…so that’s cool. We are definitely excited to play Toad’s.”

Perish Hill formed in the beginning of 2007 when Haddad and former guitarist Ryan Mara started jamming together at Haddad’s house in Norwich. As the band struggled to find the right sound, they eventually moved Mara to drums, and picked up bassist Jim Kiernan, a Sound Recording major here at UNH, vocalist Karl and guitarist Wes.

With Haddad and Kiernan attending school here, Perish Hill took advantage of the opportunity and recorded a four-song demo in the recording studio in Dodd’s Hall. “We have enough material to do a full-length, so we will probably re-record the songs on the demo plus five more songs,” said Haddad.

Until then, the band is busy playing shows throughout Connecticut and Rhode Island. “We have played a lot of shows at the Webster Theater in Hartford, but we prefer to play hardcore shows because they are a lot more fun,” said Haddad, “We like to mix up the kind of shows we do to keep it interesting.” The band has especially facing a busy couple of weeks, performing at a metal bar and a house party last weekend and at the Toad’s festival this weekend.

Playing death metal, the band is certainly not afraid of being hardcore. The group pulls its influences from contemporary metal groups like Through The Eyes Of The Dead, As Blood Runs Black, The Acacia Strain, and Cockpunch, just to name a few. “We also are definitely influenced by older metal bands to such as Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath, AC/DC Metallica [just their old stuff], Pantera, Slayer, Megadeth, and too many more to list,” said Haddad.
No matter how the show at Toad’s goes, Perish Hill is looking ahead. “Our main goal as a band is to continue to play shows and take it as far as we can. We are a really serious band but we mainly do it because it’s the most fun thing we can do. The real goal is to be able to support ourselves with the band while still having fun doing it,” said Haddad.

Check out Perish Hill and their demo on MySpace. Also be sure to support the band and drunk driving awareness at the 1Loud Street Music Festival at Toad’s Place in downtown New Haven on Sunday, Dec. 14 starting at noon. Perish Hill takes the stage at 11 p.m. Admission is only $10 for the entire day. To find out more about the festival and where it’s headed next, go to http://musicfestivals. 1loudstreet.com/.