Salinas rock band dreams of one day playing for idol, inspiration Metallica

·3 min read

A new Salinas rock band has gained popularity among residents by bringing classic hits of the decades directly to neighborhoods.

Placate formed three months ago with Ren Flores on vocals and bass guitar, Cross Carrasco on lead guitar, Bion Burchell on drums and Samuel Tinoco Vasquez on vocals and rhythm guitar.

The young artists emulate songs of artists like Billy Idol, Guns N' Roses and the Foo Fighters, but bring their own twist and energy to the stage. The real head turner (and the band’s favorite part) is when they start the riff to Metallica’s "Seek and Destroy."

“There’s no other bands like us,” Burchell said. “There’s a lot of cover bands that perform at bars in the Monterey County area, but nobody is playing the music that we’re playing.”

Placate plays live for the community during 2022 National Night Out in Salinas, Calif.
Placate plays live for the community during 2022 National Night Out in Salinas, Calif.

What brought them together?

The answer is simple: their love of music and their idols, Metallica.

Most members had been years-long friends before meeting Burchell as a coworker and realizing they all loved the same band.

Before the hit "Master of Puppets" re-emerged thanks to the Netflix show Stranger Things, most of Placate’s members had spent years learning every note for nearly every Metallica song.

Members of Placate point to photos of their idols in the band Metallica.
Members of Placate point to photos of their idols in the band Metallica.

Placate is determined to go far.

“My family hasn’t exactly been that supportive, not like my friends, just because I had a couple bad run-ins in the past, music-wise,” Flores said. “But now that we’re booking shows left and right, maybe they’ll come around.”

Placate has booked multiple shows for large and small community events including the recent 2022 National Night Out celebrations, Salinas Food and Wine Mixer, backyard shows for friends and neighbors, and even city officials like Councilman Steve McShane.

Placate hopes to one day play for their idols.

“To play or open for Metallica one day, that’s just…wow, it would be a dream,” Vasquez said. “To work towards that, I’ve been practicing more and more, sleeping earlier just to have energy to focus and write more.”

While the band continues to gain popularity locally, there are now hoping to take their music careers to the next level.

The band mates say they are hoping to get hired for many more performances and plan to use their earnings to start producing original music in a professional studio.

“The vibe we’re aiming for is high energy, something that gets the crowd moving. Basically thrash," Carrasco said. "We love heavy metal, classic rock, melodic music, and we do love punk."

Carrasco says the biggest goal is name recognition and to show others that no dream is too big.

“If someone says they want us for an event for 500 people, but they don’t have the money to pay us, guess what? We’re going to go out there and play for those 500 people,” he said.

For now, they continue to rehearse in their garage until their upcoming shows in downtown Salinas this Fall. To inquire or keep up with Placate, find their social media @officialplacateband or email placatebandofficial@gmail.com

This article originally appeared on Salinas Californian: Salinas rock band Placate dreams of playing for Metallica