Welcome To The Circus Tour @ La Tulipe

At the moment, I am still recovering from last night’s show. Needless to say, it was awesome, and I was surely impressed. It was held last night, June 6 at La Tulipe, just down Papineau Street in Montreal. I somehow managed to get lost on my way, getting off Papineau Metro despite the fact I knew Mont Royal Metro much better. Although the doors opened at 6:30 PM and the show began at 7 PM sharp, there still was a heck of a line outside past 7 o’clock. I waited in the rain for a while, and while entering the venue, I was carded, and remembered there is a bar inside. The guards laughed because they didn’t believe I was at least 18. They were shocked when they saw I was hitting my 20s in the fall.

Once inside, it was obvious this was a sold-out show. The venue was packed, swarming with teens of different styles and hair colors, each trying to find an area to scout around. It took me a while to find people I actually knew. I didn’t know where to search first. There were too many kids to choose from, and despite the fact that the bands were still setting up, it was pointless answering their phones due to the obstructive noises from all across.

The show started up with two local bands, Colossus Of Rhodes and Stolen Empire hailing both from Montreal. They played a pretty good set, and it was great to see them perform on a much bigger stage, a huge contrast from seeing them perform at either Underworld or Cafe L’Inconditionelle.

I finally found some of my friends while A Bullet For A Pretty Boy, a christian-metal band from Longview, Texas, began their set. They began with their backs turned, playing what sounded like a Harry Potter Theme cover. As the tune sent chills down my spine, it quickly transited to their first song on the set list. I had only heard about their name before, and after seeing their breath-taking set, I wish I would have known more. Standing by the fence, I right away turned off my camera, put away my bag and ran down the steps, into the crowd. I couldn’t just stand and watch. I want to be part of the sound, part of the crowd. Despite the band’s Christian faith, the Atheist fans seemed to go completely crazy for their sound. I guess this is proof that their is a specific way to spread good news to specific crowds.

 

Next up was my long awaited favorite, Our Last Night, coming all the way from Hollis, New Hampshire. This was the third time seeing them, so I knew what to expect. This band always had a way of charming me with their crazy licks and their sick vocals. Also, I am always amazed when I remember how young the vocalist Trevor Wentworth really is. They started out their set with their latest single Elephants and they played it well. It even sounded much better than the album version, which still drives me crazy (in a very good way). Me and the girls went wild, screaming every lyrics at the top of our lungs, while moshers pushed and shoved, and hardcore dancers threw their arms at everyone near. The rest of their set was unbelievable. Although they didn’t play my favorite track off their latest album We Will All Evolve, it was still enjoyable. Later on that night, while still out of breath, I managed to request Mouth Machine Gun at their merch table.

Our Last Night’s set was soon followed by an early teen favorite, From First To Last, from Los Angeles, California. It’s always a bit awkward to see this band perform ever since the day Sonny Moore (now known as Skrillex) left the band. It was even more awkward to see that my other favorite, Travis Richter, was replaced by Blake Steiner. (I guess that’s what I get for missing them last November!) I used to listen to FFTL a while back, but I barely heard any of their recent tunes. This night would be my first impression on them. The band’s set was mostly composed of songs off their latest album, and I guess they were fair enough. The crowd didn’t seem too enthusiastic about them though, until Matt Good made the comment that Montreal was one of his favorite places, and we had to live up to our reputation. The band also slipped in two old-time favorites: Note To Self and Ride The Wings of Pestilence as a finally. I was very glad they put that in. The crowd went beyond fucked when FFTL finished off. Everyone was throwing themselves around, a wave of moshers and dancers swarmed across the pit, and one of them even managed to break his nose. He was standing right behind me when it happened, and all we heard was a crack and a string of blood slipping out. (I just hope he’s okay..) The highlight of this set: Matt Good, who seems much more mature, is really looking good.

We’re almost reaching the end of the night. Although Our Last Night was my most anticipated band, (man, I won’t stop mentioning them!!) I have to say We Came As Romans was the set that really blew my mind. Hailing from Detroit, Michigan, this band rocked their set and brought one of the sickest crowds to life. Watching from the fence, I was a bit hesitant at first to drop in. The floor was INTENSE, and mark my capital words. I tried to catch a glimpse of it through my lens, but my crappy camera was too weak to capture any sight of it. It doesn’t matter, the image will be forever imprinted in my brains. The mosh pit grew from the extreme left to the extreme right, everyone pushing and shoving madly, like an angry mob urging to spill blood. It also expanded from the from of the floor to the far back, looking from the top view like a swarm of bugs feasting on a rotten corpse. It was crazy, indeed. Each time the crowd calmed down, fans climbed over each other to crowd surf. I knew I had to be one of those fans. After speaking with my friend Lidia, we agreed that during the soft parts of their set, we’d rush down and head towards front center, hopefully climbing over someone and making it to the top of the stage. It was risky, because we’re both barely 5 feet tall, and with our petite body, we were looking for a fate worst than death. Whatever. I managed to pick Lidia up, and she flew over the crowd. After she made it to stage and jumped off, I got one of the random guys to pick me up as well. I thought I was going to die. Obviously, I have done crazy things like this many times before, and the surfing went great. I got unto the stage, jumped off as far as I could (forgetting their was an empty pit nearby), landed on a bunch of scrawny emo kids, and realized that picking them as my saviors was probably a huge mistake. They seemed to have trouble bringing me back to safety. They tossed me at the wrong end, I landed on a much bigger guy who tried to push me up, but failed, and I went falling, head first, for the empty spot. I saw many of the hardcore dancers trying to jump in to catch me, but they were too far, and at about 1 inch to the floor, I grabbed a dude’s shirt and pulled myself up. And luckily, Lidia happened to be nearby. She grabbed my leg, I flipped, landed on my feet, and walked away. At least I had fun. Also, I didn’t piss the vocalist off by taking down his mic with me. (He really seemed utterly pissed.)

Finally, the moment every single kid in the hall had been waiting for. Coming all the way from England (all though their hometown is now Los Angeles) Asking Alexandria!!!! Although I couldn’t stay to watch their performance, (shame on me, I know) I heard they rocked the set, and gave the fans more than what was expected. In a shorter sense, they were fuckin’ awesome. Lidia and her friends got to meet them afterward. Although I wasn’t there in person, I was definitely there in spirit, and I believe them when they mention how good they were live. Luckily, they’ll be making their way back to Montreal during the Trash And Burn Tour, later this August. That is one show I will NOT miss.

Altogether, this was my greatest summer show yet. Every act had amazing worth and something to share with the overcrowded venue. Who knows what these screaming metal bands will bring to us throughout the upcoming season? Well, I sure had some fun.

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Ode To The Fallen & Run For Cover @ L’Étranger

On Saturday, June 5, 2010, I tagged along with good friend Chris to see one of our friends play a show at Café L’Étranger. I was surprised after walking down those stonewashed steps and taking a peep through the large glass window. It was a café indeed. Not to mention, a cute one. Two rock/metal bands will be playing a show in this? I hope they don’t trash the place.. The area was filled with tiny round tables and comfy seats. I took one, surprised I’d be watching a rock show sitting down. The show began at a couple of minutes passed 9 PM, beginning with Run For Cover. This four-piece band has Paul Milot on the drums, Orin Loft on bass, Stephen Young on guitar and David Nebbs on guitar… Wait? What about the vocalists? The truth is, this is what got me really eager. The two guitarists and the bassist ARE the vocalists! At the moment, I can’t even think of another band that has that many vocals.. And the great part about all this: they could actually sing. And very well in fact. I sat at the edge of my seat, my ears bleeding from the loud sound escaping the instruments. Did I mention they were really loud? It took a couple of minutes to adjust, but it was completely worth it. For a first show, the guys of Run For Cover really knew how to put a good show together.

To finish off came the band, formally on hiatus, Ode To The Fallen. I told these guys so many times I’d see one of their shows, and this was the night. This is a five-piece band hailing from a part of the south-shore, Chateauguay to be exact, with Michael Disnard and Wishe Deom on guitar, William Gray on bass, Aiden Deom on drums and returning to the set, Orin Loft on vocals. The wait was completely worth it. My favorite part, besides all instruments being very good and well intertwined? Orin’s stage presence. Picture this: It’s a very small stage. When I say small, I really mean it. It’s tiny as fuck. There are five guys on stage, all with very fuckin sick guitars, a sweet drum set and then there’s Orin, growling mad as hell and doing these crazy gestures, jumping up and down, moving swiftly everywhere, and you’re wondering.. How the fuck? That takes a lot of skill, and Ode To The Fallen surely has it.

It’s after seeing bands like these two perform that I feel proud of being part of the Montreal scene. The music hear is growing and rising quickly, each artist fighting to reach the top. I believe that they have improved across the ages, and this, immensely. You should check them out. No, really, you should.

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