ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014 EDITORIAL – FEATURING AVENGED SEVENFOLD & KORN TORONTO

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AVENGED SEVENFOLD - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014

 FEATURING

 AVENGED SEVENFOLD

&

KORN

EDITORIAL REVIEW

TORONTO EDITION

 By: Fridae Mattas

BODY COUNT CROWD - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014
All Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival 2014 finally arrived on a beautiful Friday, not too hot not too cold! Actually, it was a little crisp by the lake at the Molson Canadian Amphitheater for July 25th, I’m just so glad it didn’t rain! The only water flow noted other than a drunk girl lean peeing on the wall by the mainstage…Was when IceT decided to spray his water bottle everywhere. Instantly everyone with a camera in the media-pit covered their gear, myself included. Water dries but it still fucks up your equipment! Lately I have been covering only select events because my FridaeTV time is extremely scarce these days. I’m amazed that this editorial, photos included is being published so soon even with a technical issue. I guess that’s just how amazing my problem solving abilities have become over time. There was a slight delay getting to the venue but I reached just in time for the last Suicide Silence media tune. Was absolutely annoyed I missed “Veil Of Maya“, “Mushroomhead“, “Darkest Hour“, “Miss May IandTexas Hippie Coalition“. Another setback was losing my photographer before the festival even started. She was having technical difficulties with her phone and I couldn’t reach her. So, on my own it was! I had a fantastic time, met some new friends in addition to running into so many of my friends already at the festival. Between sets I had a few beers with as many as I could find. My head did not appreciate the festivities the next day, I had a crazy beerover because the shenanigans continued after the show.  SUICIDE SILENCE - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014 A few of the bands on the bill I have already seen and covered but hey who could say no to another Avenged Sevenfold or Trivium set? For me this was exciting, I love seeing how bands progress, some do amazingly with refining their talents and some hit roadblocks because not everyone has the same drive. Suicide Silence was rocking a tune “Cease To Exist” off of their new release “You Can’t Stop Me” the first record with new vocalist Hernan “Eddie” Hermida. The band is: Chris Garza – Rhythm Guitar, Mark Heylmun – Lead Guitar, Alex Lopez – Drums and Dan Kenny on the Bass. SUICIDE SILENCE - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014SUICIDE SILENCE - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014The fans were loving the energy, perfect amount of guitar and angry growling for surfage…Crowd surfing that is! The security guards probably wanted to shoot themselves in the face (They did, I asked). Being in the front lines constantly pulling flying bodies from the crowd, never looks like a fun job. One of the security guards told me that they don’t look forward to country music shows the most because people get so hammered they start fighting everyone, including their friends. I’ll take his word for it because I wouldn’t know, I have only been to maybe four country shows and they were at smaller venues. Once I was satisfied with my one song shots, I migrated to the bridge between the Sumerian stage where Body Count was setting up and the Coldcock Whiskey stage to observe the performance. The following song in the seven track set was “Fuck Everything” from the 2011 record “Black Crown”, this is the song everyone needs to play when they’re having a bad day. Its always fun to watch the fans fly around and headbang to the bands. As the set was coming to an end, I kept seeing this one little Larry crowd surf over and over. When he popped out of the pit again, I heard him shout to his friend “let’s go again!” but his friend declined so he rewinded and dove right back in the crowd for another glide across the ocean of people. CROWD - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL TORONTO 2014CROWD - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014Body Count Frontman O.G Ice Mutha Fuckin T was up next and the fans at that stage were getting restless chanting “Body Count! Body Count!”. In case you only thought of IceT as the cop on Law & Order SVU, he’s the grandfather of rap/rock! He started his thrash metal career as frontman and co-founder of Body Count back in 1990, IceT has also dropped solo rap albums like “O.G Original Gangster” and the pre-Body Count days “Rhyme Pays”. The rest of the band is co-founder/Lead Guitar – Ernie C, Ill Will on the skins, Vincent Price  on Bass, Juan Of The Dead – Rhythm Guitar. I’m tripping out right now! I found out IceT has the same birthday I do, he also has the same beauty mark on his face in the exact same spot as mine. Now it makes sense why people were asking me if I was his daughter at the festival, I could very well play his kid! If I didn’t know better, I would absolutely think he was my dad, he’s only a year older than my mom. Maybe that’s why at first Coco was looking at me like I stole her money, I look like his long lost daughter ha ha. But now I completely understand IceT, his whole obsession with rock, he’s probably drawn to the sound of the guitar like I am, his confidence and he likes blondes! I love blondie boys, although I’ve dated brunettes and gingers there’s something about blondes I like more. Wow, he was my Dad in past life for sure, we are different beings.BODY COUNT FT. ICE T - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014BODY COUNT FT. ICE T - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014BODY COUNT FT. ICE T - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014As the band was finishing the gear setup, IceT’s gorgeous wife Coco popped out onto the stage with their two super cute bulldogs. I was more than happy to play with the dogs while fans took photos with Coco after the set. Never in my life did I think I would get the chance to cover or see Body Count live, never mind watching and listening to them cover a Slayer track (Disorder). The set started with old school tune “There Goes The Neighborhood” followed by “Bowels of The Devil” and before ending it off with the most controversial song in history “Cop Killer’, they dropped a newer tune “Talk Shit, Get Shot”. How ironic is it that IceT the man who created the track “Cop Killer” plays a cop on TV! I would love to check them out when they hit Toronto again, fantastic performance by the entire band, they brought it hard! BODY COUNT FT. ICE T - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014CANNIBAL CORPSE - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014The next band playing over at the Coldcock stage was Buffalo’s Cannibal Corpse, another veteran band I have never seen but more than glad to be checking out. Instantly I noticed the vocals weren’t very fluid in regards to diction, with Suicide Silence you could fully understand what he was singing but CC frontman George Fisher needs to clean it up a bit. Regardless, the band’s enthusiasm made up for it because they tore up that stage! I took as many shots possible so many photographers were in the pit, plus security and the continual flying bodies. I wasn’t about that life so I migrated to my little spot to watch the rest of their set. The band is: Alex Webster – Bass, Paul Mazurkiewicz – Drums, George  Fisher – Vocals, Patrick O’Brien – Lead Guitar, Rob Barrett – Rhythm Guitar. I would check them out again if they reached Toronto and all metal fans should definitely give these guys a listen. CANNIBAL CORPSE - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014TRIVIUM - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014Not only did I miss the six bands I wanted to see, didn’t catch any of the performances at the Victory stage either, had to keep reminding my ocd one person can only do so much. All of the side stages were wrapped by the time the mainstage was ready to be heated up by Trivium, who were breaking the ice. Surprisingly I have seen Trivium before, caught their set at Heavy T.O 2012 which was pretty good, this time around they were even more on point! They all looked like they were having fun, yes, a metal band was having fun! It was the trend of the evening for the mainstage bands, like everyone got laid and was in a fantastic mood. At first it was a little challenging to shoot the whole band because I couldn’t migrate freely, the pit was very crowded, seemed like there were more photographers than last year. Either way I still managed to get good shots, it just became increasingly difficult as the night progressed, by the time Korn hit the stage we could have created a photographer mosh pit. Obviously, some of the photographers were not supposed to be there but who am I to tell them to leave, that’s not my job. TRIVIUM LIVE @ ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL FRIDAY JULY 25THTRIVIUM - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014The set was very entertaining they even managed to get the crowd to participate, which is at times an extreme challenge with Toronto crowds.  There were some pitch issues but his diction was perfect and at least Vox Matt Heafy wasn’t using a voice box like many others do. Corey Beaulieu rocked his axe all over the stage, utilizing it like every guitarist should. Paolo Gregoletto on Bass had some expression on his face this time, he wasn’t all stone faced. I even caught a smile but that shot was too blurry to use in the gallery. The beat was kept tight and steady by Mat Madiro but it was nothing too fancy. If you like metal music with meaning then you must check out Trivium, they threw down tunes like the opener “Black” the tune “Strife” and ended the set with “In Waves” one of my favorite Trivium tunes. TRIVIUM - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014TRIVIUM - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014Next on the bill was Asking Alexandria from England, they’ve been to Toronto before. I don’t remember seeing them but for some reason I have a feeling that I have. We will pretend like I haven’t because my memory does not recollect anything. The only clue is that Warped tour keeps popping into my head, so maybe that’s where I’ve seen them. Asking Alexandria is the brainchild of Lead Guitarist Ben Bruce, he first started the band with different members in Dubai before migrating back to England for a fresh start. The stage set up had these giant brightly lit A’s on each side of Drummer James Cassells, who immediately began smashing those cans once he got behind his kit. Asking Alexandria to me, was the easiest band to shoot that evening. ASKING ALEXANDRIA - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014ASKING ALEXANDRIA GUITAR - BEN BRUCE LIVE @ ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYH ASKING ALEXANDRIA - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014ASKING ALEXANDRIA - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014

ASKING ALEXANDRIA - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014Frontman and co-founder Danny Worsnop was ready to rock with shades and a wobble. I’m surprised he didn’t fall into the crowd. Either way, vocally and performance wise he killed it! Wandering all over the stage, with his bandmates in tow actively helping him entertain the crowd. The fans were eating out of Worsnop’s hands, he was the only frontman of the night to get right in there at almost crowd level. Look wise, he kind of reminded me of a young Chris Jericho of Fozzy and yes, the wrestler…Interviewed him a few years back (Click to watch). 

Of all the bands I had seen up to this point in the day Worsnop had the best vocals and the band as a whole has impeccable chemistry on stage. So much talent for such a young bunch of Larries. I have seen bands ten years their senior who still haven’t figured out how to put on a show. Rhythm Guitarist Cameron Liddell was very laid back but he still had his skill and swagger, as did Bassist Sam Bettley. I guess there’s a reason these lads have been making waves on the scene, with their catchy melodic metalcore, I can see why. Go see these guys rock any stage it will be worth your time, I look forward to covering them again in the future. 

AAGDASKING ALEXANDRIA - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014ASKING ALEXANDRIA - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014 At this festival everyone who had lawn seats got lucky like Daft Punk! They were all upgraded to the 300’s section, which made it a full house and looked pretty cool. Even though nobody was on the lawns there were way more people in attendance than last year for sure! The People who would have been on lawns were drinking away at Beerfest across the bridge at the CNE fairgrounds. I passed by for a minute to visit with friends after the show and was to cover the event the following day. But…Due to solving my technical issues I couldn’t make it, I was mucho sad because I had been looking forward to it all year! And, I wanted to see the Trews! JONATHAN DAVIS - KORN - VOCALS - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVALKORN - BASS - REGINALD ARVIZU LIVE @ MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014 TORONTOBack to this festival, for the next band I couldn’t have been more excited than I was. On the outside I was the usual totally cool Fridae but inside I was teenying out hardcore! This band I could never see because I was like nine when they first emerged onto the scene. And, do you really thing my Sensei Father let me go to a rock concert? He didn’t even let me sleepover at my friends house next door! I only really got to know their music because my first high school boyfriend was obsessed with them. Randal was one of those “rebellious rich kids” who had a Korn patch and button on his backpack and probably still is a huge fan! Who knows, he may have been at the show. Always has been my ex boyfriends who have introduced me to rock music in my teen years. My Dad was into the old school classics like Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, Queen, Genesis, The Police etc. And I love R&B, Soul, Rap. As for Korn, I have not had the opportunity to experience them live and to have the chance to watch and listen to some of my favorite tracks was incredible! Covering the band was the icing on the cake. As elated as I was for their set, one thing I was praying for was that Korn would be good live. So many bands and artists I’ve been a fan of that I have covered were horrendous live. KORN - DRUMS - RAY LUZIER LIVE @ ROCKSTAR MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014 TORONTOKORN - KEYS - ZAC BAIRD LIVE @ MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014 TORONTOThe moment of truth was upon us, would they blow my mind or totally blow and turn me off the band completely? The answer is…They were mindblasting! I loved every minute of Korn’s set and they truly showed their veteran skills off! The first to hit the stage was drummer Ray Luzier, he sat down and counted the rest of the band straight into the “Molested” intro, before they rocked the first track of the set “Falling Away From Me”. That tune was followed by “Twist” one of my favorites from the record “Life Is Peachy”. I was trying my best to get the cleanest shots possible in this media pit frenzie. Some faces I recognized others I didn’t and definitely can’t keep up with all of these new media outlets. I don’t pay attention to the competitors but I know most of them have grabbed a few ideas and words from me. Frontman Jonathan Davis is in surprisingly decent shape for a man of his age, and sang well enough to retain me as a fan. There were times in the set I thought his mic stand was going to go flying when he really got into a song but I think it was shellacked on the stage or something because it stayed.  From a critics perspective, a frontman with Davis’s experience should know how to build more of a connection with the audience, engage with the people a little more, they are there to see you, talk to them. At least Davis was visibly enjoying himself, throwing smiles at the fans here and there between songs. I remember seeing another favorite band and the singer was in a corner by himself the whole set, that was a huge disappointment. JONATHAN DAVIS - KORN - VOCALS - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVALKORN - GUITARIST BRIAN WELCH LIVE @ MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014 TORONTOKORN GUITARIST - JAMES MUNKY SHAFFER LIVE @ MAYHEM TORONTO 2014 Guitars by Brian “Head” Welch and James “Munky” Schaffer were fantastic, dreads were flying everywhere! I love the sound of electric guitars, that is what drew me to rock music. There’s something about the resonance of an electric guitar played by a true Axemaster that my ears can’t get enough of. The more guitars the merrier, as long as they are played well because if there were three of me playing the electric guitar, everyone would cringe and start throwing things at us as they booed. On the other hand, when you have the Axemasters in Korn rocking their tunes in your face, who can complain? I certainly can’t, even as a critic because they brought it! Their dexterity was more than obvious and absolutely amazing to listen to and watch. I wish all of my friends were there because concerts are always way more fun with friends than alone. Bassist Reginald “Fieldy” Arvizu was flying around everywhere and then there were these random times where he just stood there taking in the crowd. Don’t know why he hasn’t been in a “Pirates of the Carribbean” film yet, he looks like he would blend right in as the perfect pirate. KORN GUITARIST BRIAN WELCH LIVE @ MAYHEM FESTIVAL TORONTO 2014JONATHAN DAVIS - KORN - VOCALS - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVALHopefully I will one day get to see Korn rock out again, my favorite moment was when they played “Freak On A Leash” just before closing the set with “Blind”. “Freak On A Leash” is one of my all time favorite songs in history. If any of you rock and metal fans get the chance to see Korn live, take it and go, you will be glad you did! Mayhem fest is still on the road, check out the website here for the remaining tour dates. The day kept getting better of course, it was my day, Friday and good things always come to me on Fridays. There was still one band left to rock the stage, one of my favorite bands to date and the headliners of the 2014 Rockstar Energy Mayhem festival…Avenged Sevenfold!AVENGED SEVENFOLD GUITARS - ZACKY VENGENCE & SYNYSTER GATES LIVE @ MAYHEM FEST 2014 TORONTOAVENGED SEVENFOLD - JOHNNY CHRIST - BASS LIVE @ MAYHEM FEST 2014 TORONTONot too many bands out there that I can say I would watch more than once. However, Avenged Sevenfold, Korn, Lincoln Park, Finger Eleven, and The Trews, to name a few are the ones I could watch perform over and over without getting bored. Their music and live sets are that good, especially after you see Finger Eleven guitarist Rick Jackett in action you will be spoiled, no other guitarist that I have experienced is at that level of phenomenal. Love seeing bands that I have previously covered develop more into their talents, Avenged Sevenfold is a primo example of hard work paying off. Last time I saw these guys they needed to work on various things. The minute I saw them fire up that stage and hearing Synyster Gates drop that riff I was more than pleased. Guitarists Zacky Vengence and Synyster Gates were comfortable as soon as they hit the stage, past sets they’ve come off as shy and sad. Clearly they were both having a good day because they were smiling all over the place, much different than the somber mope. The skill level in their Axe play has improved tremendously as has their audience interaction, although they still need some work in that area. Keep up the good work guys! Backup vocals were excellent, definitely enjoyed hearing and watching them play, especially with all of those guitar solo’s! Music to my ears couldn’t be a truer saying. AVENGED SEVENFOLD - M. SHADOWS - VOX LIVE @ MAYHEM FEST 2014 TORONTOAVENGED SEVENFOLD DRUMS  LIVE @ ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVALAVENGED SEVENFOLD -ZACKY VENGENCE - GUITAR - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYEvery time I cover A7X I look forward to seeing the stage set up andAVENGED SEVENFOLD - M. SHADOWS - VOX - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FE how they’re going to use spectacular pyro! You can always count on A7X to deliver some awesome fire, they had random blasts from behind the drum kit lighting up across the stage. It was too cool, I love shooting bands with wicked fire! A pyro I am, my favorite film for the longest time as a kid was “Firestarter” starring Drew Barrymore. Bassist Johnny Christ was doing his thing, compared to his bandmates, I noticed he connected more with the audience. They all did exceptionally well putting on a show for the fans. Newbie drummer Arin Ilejay was stick handling like his life depended on it, if he was to save the world by drumming, I believe he could save us! M.Shadows on vox was not so great vocally the last time I saw them, this time was a completely different story! As soon as Sanders started in with the first tune “Shepherd of Fire” from the 2013 release “Hail To The King” he came in strong and kept that power for majority of the set. I even noticed some improvements with his range, especially on the softer tunes. As he gets more comfortable singing without growling, his range will continue to expand. Sing some R&B tunes when rehearsing by mimicking the vocals, it will give your vocal range a boost the more you practice. It doesn’t matter what genre you sing, having more of a vocal range enhances your ability. A few producers I’ve met with assumed because I have such a large vocal range my sound was going to be Mariahesq, filled with vocal gymnastics…I am not Christina Aguilera, I don’t need to show off my range. I sound like me and don’t over use runs, my flexible range helps me sing intricate songs and keeps my vocals in shape. AVENGED SEVENFOLD - SYNYSTER GATES - GUITAR - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAAVENGED SEVENFOLD - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 2014The second tune of the set was another enjoyable sonata to my ears “Nightmare”, I love the riffs so haunting, it reminds me of “Nightmare on Elm Street” for some reason and not because the track is called “Nightmare”! The films could have used this song, it would have been perfect but these guys were in diapers when the original films were made. Right out of the gate it was an awesome performance, the crowd sang along to every song, definitely a good night for everyone. The last tune I was in the pit for was one of my favorites, it was the first Avenged Sevenfold tune I had ever heard; “Bat Country”. The newest single “This Means War” was the last before the encores “A Little Piece Of Heaven” and “Unholy Confessions” which closed the set with more pyro and a few explosions. If you have not seen or heard these guys yet, you should do yourself a huge favour and check them out as soon as possible. Absolutely would love to cover Avenged Sevenfold again and maybe do an interview. Funniest thing I heard all night was when a female fan kept yelling  “Put your dick in my mouth! I want to put your dick in my mouth!” when M. Shadows was on one of the risers to my left. I was dying and couldn’t hold a steady shot until I got the laughs out of my system. Major shout out to all the behind the scenes people who made this festival run on schedule, without their experience and precision many things could have gone wrong.  AVENGED SEVENFOLD  LIVE @ ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL FRIDAYAVENGED SEVENFOLD - M. SHADOWS - VOX - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FEAVENGED SEVENFOLD -  CROWD - ROCKSTAR ENERGY MAYHEM FESTIVAL 201The crowd was a little sad that the show was over but some didn’t even make it through to the end…They were either dragged out by security or passed out in their seat. So funny were the people that wandered this years Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival, there were a few Larries asking the popo’s to take pictures with them like they were being cuffed, it was so amusing to watch. The festival is still on tour, all of the bands are worth your time so go see them!! Check the photos below, I had the best time! Thank you to everyone who made this possible, I was fully entertained! See you next year! www.RockstarMayhemFest.com

COPYRIGHT © 2014 FRIDAE MATTAS. All Rights Reserved

AMARANTHE LIVE IN TORONTO 2013 – FEATURE EDITORIAL REVIEW

All Photography By: Fridae Mattas
All Photography By: Fridae Mattas

AMARANTHE

LIVE IN TORONTO 2013

EDITORIAL REVIEW

By: Fridae Mattas

The first time I heard Swedish/Danish band Amaranthe my ears immediately took a liking to the poppy melodic male and female vocals mixed with serious growls and sick guitars. It was everything my ears could ask for in a band and since then I have kept an eye out for press releases from their publicist. These days my time is beyond limited but my memory is pretty amazing, I kept them in mind as a band I needed to see live if they were to ever hit Toronto.  When I saw they were to play the Virgin Mobile Mod Club July 20th not only did I want to review the set I also wanted to do an interview but did not have any free time to even attempt to make that happen. Thanks to the fabulous folks at Live Nation, shooting the almost twenty track set was breezy.

AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013ELIZE RYD - VOX AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013My favorite part of Music Journalism is seeing new bands live who have some pretty fantastic tunes. High five to me for making it on time to see Amaranthe rock the Mod Club, thought I was going to arrive mid set. I reached just in time but missed the openers Kobra And The Lotus which was mucho disappointing! I was looking forward to shooting and seeing their set, but I guess you can’t have everything you want all the time.

AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013Amaranthe formerly known as “Avalanche” was formulated in 2008  by Jake E – clean vocals and Olof Mörck – Guitars and Keys. There are a total of six members in the band one of which is a female Elize Ryd – Vocals, she has a pretty voice, soft and fluid. Next there’s growls and fry screams by Andreas Solveström – Hard vocals, Morten Løwe Sørensen rocking the Drums and Johan Andreassen on the Bass. Amaranthe has two records, the first is their self titled debut and the recent LP “The Nexus” was released in March.

MORTEN LOWE SORENSEN - DRUMS AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013JAKE E - VOX AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013They kicked off their set with a new tune  “Invincible” from their latest album, the crowd went crazy once they migrated on stage. There were no barricades meaning no media pit or security and that was okay with me because no way in hell was I going to put myself in the line of fire! I had my various lenses but they are not magical. The crowd was wild but they are a “Metal” band they should be used to the crowd surfers. Jake E seemed annoyed for most of the set but there were a few normal moments. By the time they played “The Nexus” even Vox – Elize was over the stage crashers so she would take them by the hand and guide them back towards the crowd. Next time the band comes to Toronto they definitely need a pit or a higher stage. There were many people but it was not sold out, the crowd was divided themselves into three halves, front section, middle moshers and the back section trying not to get whacked by a mosher.

AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013There are a few songs I really dig like “Amaranthine”, “Afterlife” and “!,000,000 Lightyears” a few other tunes sounded the same, I couldn’t tell them apart. Vocals were pretty good but Jake E was super pitchy during a few tunes but nonetheless my ears still like the sound of his voice it reminds me of old school hair metal bands, The only female in the Elize Ryd has a sugary sweet voice but needs to work on her breathing to hold the notes a bit longer, it’s not like she’s dancing. During the tune “Burn With Me” the harmonies sounded a little flat but they did a decent job regardless. Andreas Solveström’s growls were fantastic, you could understand every word clearly, superb diction is rare for those who fry scream but he has them on lock.

OLOF MORCK - GUITAR AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013JOHAN ANDREASSEN - BASS - AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013

The performance was enjoyable, certain things seemed a tad rehearsed but one thing that did not seem rehearsed was Bassist Johan giving Drummer Morten a little birthday introduction asking the crowd to sing him the birthday song and they did. orten also had a killer drum solo in the set where he smashed those cans with ease. They had a few wardrobe changes and threw in a cover of Survior’s “Eye Of the Tiger”. More fans kept going on stage, one even asked for Jake to look at her friends camera and pose for a photo with her before she rejoined the crowd. It must have been irritating to have the performance interrupted so many times so I don’t blame them at all.

ELIZE RYD - VOX AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013JAKE E - VOX AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013

Next time Amaranthe hits the City I will definitely be setting up an interview and checking out their set because they did well enough for a revisitation. If you like melodic metal pop fusions then Amaranthe is for you, worth checking out. www.Amaranthe.se www.livenation.com

COPYRIGHT © 2013 FRIDAE MATTAS. All Rights Reserved

AMARANTHE LIVE @ THE VIRGIN MOBILE MOD CLUB 2013

THE OTHER HALF – CMF 2013 PT. 2 FEATURING: INCURA & SIX SIDE DIE

Photo By: Fridae Mattas
Photo By: Fridae Mattas

THE OTHER HALF – CMF 2013 PT. 2

FEATURING

INCURA & SIX SIDE DIE

By: Fridae Mattas

Canadian Music Week continued! If you have yet to read the other parts of the Canadian Music Fest coverage you can view them here and here.

This year I wanted everything to be different, told myself not to stress over anything…Yeah, now I am stressing over stupid technolgy not working as it should!  I tried Final Cut Pro on my friends computer a few weeks ago…I wanted to shoot myself in the face, don’t understand why Apple makes the simplest things so time consuming and complicated! After listening to more than half of the bands playing the festival, I concluded that there was nothing new appealing to my ears. Most of the good bands on the Toronto scene I already love, know about, have heard of or don’t like. There were a few Australian and Japanese bands I saw for a few minutes but they were just mediocre.

Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV
Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV

On March 21st I had a few bands to check but it turned out one of the bands was not even playing, regardless of what the book said. I thought why not just hit up a few clubs on Queen and then reach Incura’s set at the Hard Luck. Absolutely thrilled that I was able to catch their set and I arrived early!! The first time I saw Vancouver band Incura was at the Rivoli in 2009, they were so fantastic I had to check them out again but kept missing the sets in the city. This time I was determined, I even agreed to an interview with dynamo frontman Kyle Gruninger when the bands publicist reached out. To watch the interview click here or go to www.youtube.com/fridaetv.

Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV
Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV

Incura is:  Kyle Gruninger – Vocals, Royce Whittaker – Guitar,  Jono Olson – Bass, Jim McLaren – Keyboards and Phil Gardner on the kit. You cannot describe their music by genre-boxing them. They have such a fantastically different blend of artistic sounds and if anyone tries to change them that will be a sad day.Kyle is one of the best frontmen I have seen ever! His vocals and stage presence surpass many of the veteran artists out there today, if Freddie Mercury and David Bowie had a son it would be Kyle. You can see him shine by watching the band live or viewing a video on Fridae TV youtube.

Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV
Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV

The rest of the band did well, Whittaker was immense on the axe but there were a few tuning issues that I heard, but this time I will let it slide because they played four shows back to back in three days. When I notice mistakes at least I know he is actually playing the guitar and not “Rock Banding it” with a backing track pretending to play the instrument. (I have seen that happen far too often these days!). Phil Gardner on the Drums was tight the whole time! Most Drummers I have seen and know are always on top of their game. Bassist Jono Olson kept those Bass lines crisp , he was very energetic and not overly enthusiastic.  They all have chemistry beyond words that you have to see for yourself, keep Incura in your thought because soon enough they will have a huge following!

Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV
Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV
Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV
Photo By: Dipan Cheema for Fridae TV

On Friday March 22nd an interview was scheduled with James Black of Finger Eleven who also has his own solo project and an Alt-Country band “Blackie Jackett Jr.” with fellow guitarist Rick Jackett. You can watch the very informative interview here. Once his set wrapped I was to run down to The Indies but instead I ran into an awesome friend as I was leaving the Rivoli and decided to check the Protest The Hero set at The Hoxton which I have never been too. I did feel a little guilty for fucking up the coverage rotation but I really wanted to see PTH kill it! Fridae TV photographer Dipan was already at The Kool Haus shooting the show, so my guilt wasn’t too overwhelming. The Hoxton looked nice, the sound system was shit up close but farther back it sounded decent, invest in your sound system people. Did not stay too long because it was getting crazy and I didn’t want to miss Matt Mays and El Torpedo I take it and go.

PROTEST THE HERO LIVE @ THE HOXTON CMF 2013

The Indies were held at the Kool Haus this year due to the relocation because of the construction on front street by Union station and the usual CMW HQ Royal York. Next year they should have CMW/CMF at the Sheraton Centre, after all it is a spacious hotel and centrally located. The band playing when I arrived was Diamond Rings…The bands music was good but the singer was horrible, he ruined everything, my ears were screaming! Thankfully, the set was almost over and Matt Mays was hitting the stage next. It is beyond tragic that band member Jay Smith of El Torpedo was died not even a week later. Smith was found dead Wednesday March 27th in his Alberta hotel room, cause of death is yet to be released. He was a strong influence on the band and a very talented musician who left behind a young family. My condolences to all of his family and friends, it is always hard to lose people so suddenly. When people say time will heal, I don’t agree with that saying when it comes to the death of someone close. You never really get over it, you just learn how to cope and live your life. 

JAY SMITH - GUITAR - MATT MAYS & EL TORPEDO LIVE @ THE 2013 SIRIUS XM INDIES CMW

The band was fantastic they were all so cohesive and I loved the guitars, always a sucker for the sound of a guitar played well. I don’t know why but the more guitars squealing the better for my ears! Mays has a soulful mellow voice and is a fabulous frontman with great stage presence. The crowd was hypnotized by his every move, see for yourself and watch “Loveless” and “Stoned” the two best tracks I filmed of their performance at The Indies.

MATT MAYS LIVE @ THE 2013 SIRIUS XM INDIES CMW

This year CMW had over a thousand bands playing but not enough quality entertainment that I wanted to hear. Always remember it is about quality, not quantity. The headliners for The 2013 Indie Awards were Metric, the crowd was waiting patiently for the first twenty minutes and then they began to get restless because the band was still not on the stage after an hour.

METRIC LIVE @ THE 2013 SIRIUS XM INDIES CMW CMF

METRIC LIVE @ THE 2013 SIRIUS XM INDIES CMW CMF

The crowd forgot about the delay the minute vox Emily Haines walked onto the stage. Metric started off their set with Artificial Nocturne, followed by Youth Without You which I absolutely think sounds like “Come As You Are” by Nirvana. There were moments when it seemed as though Haines wasn’t singing, photographer Dipan even notice that, maybe everyone should lay off the vocal effects and sing normally. They were okay, I don’t get the hype but Haines does put on a respectable performance.

METRIC LIVE @ THE 2013 SIRIUS XM INDIES CMW CMF

Next!! Six Side Die at Cherry Colas!! Prior to their set I was on a mission to find a good band! So I trekked up and down Queen street in search of new quality entertainment. Most of the good bands I have already seen and like the days before the bands playing were not mesmerizing enough to keep me. I did a new interview with Six Side Die but it is still being edited, like Kyle’s it was to be right here for you all to see but I don’t always get what I want.

SIX SIDE DIE LIVE @ CHERRY COLAS CMF 2013

ANTHONY - GUITAR - SIX SIDE DIE LIVE @ CHERRY COLAS CMF 2013

Six Side Die is in the process of recording their debut record “That F’N Album” which should be out this summer for everyone to listen to. SSD’s fans raised enough funds for the band to make the record possible. Many people know frontman Bryan Crouch from his previous band “Hail The Villain” and I have noticed by the comments left on a few FridaeTV videos some of his Villain fans are not happy with the migration. People don’t understand how harsh hard rock vocals are on your chords, all of the screaming and growling damages the vocal chords causing them to deteriorate because of continual misuse. There are so many metal and hard rock bands that have had to hold off on tours because the vocalist needed some voice rest or had to get legit surgery to try and repair some of the affliction. Honestly people need to get over it and move the fuck on, he is a talented guy who wants to continue evolving as an artist on his own terms. If you don’t love it anymore, you have to let it go to truly find what you are missing because in the end the only one watching out for you is you.

BRYAN CROUCH - VOX - SIX SIDE DIE LIVE @ CHERRY COLAS CMF 2013

KELLY - DRUMS - SIX SIDE DIE LIVE @ CHERRY COLAS CMF 2013

They rocked Cherry Cola’s “Tiny Tim” stage to the fullest of their ability, it was so hard to get photos of everyone because there are five Larries on a tiny stage at once overlapping one another. Six Side Die is: Bryan Crouch – Vocals, Anthony Xander – Lead Axe, Kelly Voelkel- Drums, Mike Liske – Rhythm Guitar/Vox and Pat Kavanagh- Bass/Vocals.

PAT - BASS/BACKUPVOX - SIX SIDE DIE LIVE @ CHERRY COLAS CMF 2013

MIKE -  RHYTHM GUITAR- SIX SIDE DIE LIVE @ CHERRY COLAS CMF 2013

I love Pat’s has screamage skills he sounds fantastic and plays bass pretty well keeping the moment up. Mike on the rhythm needs to relax a little bit, have fun on stage! The hardest was getting shots of Kelly he was always blocked by a Larry but shit I managed one still. Loving their sound, very eclectic and Bryan still kills it as a frontman, he brings the vibrancy needed to make this new venture a successful endeavour. It’s amazing how the band interacts with their fans on the regular either by doing random fb or twitter updates or playing video-games with them. Xander is great guitarist, he tried to do some tricks with a bottle…Didn’t exactly work but at least he tried something different. People are too afraid of risks and change but if you don’t take a chance on something you are not living. Check out all of the above bands and artists as well as the others mentioned in the previous CMW editorials and keep it locked for those interviews, that’s all for this year!

COPYRIGHT © 2013 FRIDAE MATTAS. All Rights Reserved

SIX SIDE DIE LIVE @ CHERRY COLAS CMF 2013

DETHKLOK LIVE IN TORONTO 2012 – FEATURE EDITORIAL REVIEW

All Photography By: Fridae Mattas

DETHKLOK

LIVE @ THE SOUND ACADEMY 2012

FEATURE EDITORIAL REVIEW

By: Fridae Mattas

Last Wednesday November 7th Dethklok hit Toronto’s Sound Academy for the Metalocalypse fall tour with Machine Head, Black Dahlia Murder and All That Remains. Initially, I wanted to check out and shoot all of the bands but meetings lasted longer than expected and all pf the construction by Union station fucked up the rotation. When I first heard of Dethklok I was more than little confused, were they a cartoon or a band? Well, the answer is both! You can find the bands story on their website here.

I arrived a few tracks into Machine Head’s set, upset that I missed shooting them again, at least this time I was able to see some of the set. They were fantastic, I couldn’t keep my eyes off the stage! The venue was packed yet not sold out, with all the various different people I encountered it came close enough. Such an enormous difference in energies from the show the night before at The Phoenix, this crowd was enjoying themselves and soaking up every second of sound from their favorite metal bands. 

I loved all of the guitar solos because they were impeccably well done, the axes were crying with joy and my ears were in absolute guitar heaven, floating on little guitar clouds. Major props to the band for having a moment of silence for Suicide Silence frontman Mitch Lucker. He passed November 1st 2012 from injuries inccured by a motercycle accident on October 31st. What amazed me was the whole Sound Academy went silent for a moment, I have never seen any venue go silent that fast before, good job Toronto! Sady, Mitch was drinking and driving the night of his accident, his extremely bad decision cost him his life. Please be safe everyone, don’t drink and drive, take the bus drink as much as you want, find a cab, ride with a sober friend, there are so many alternatives. The crowd was so into Machine Head, it was fun to watch especially this little Larry who was headbanging hard with his three homies. Cannot wait for Machine Head’s return to Toronto, I hope to be covering them and will arrive extra early, you should catch them on the Metalocalypse tour which is still kicking.

Dethklok hit the stage shortly after Machine Heads’ set wrapped, there were so many photographers at this show I was surprised they allowed that many in the pit. The downfalls were the bright screen behind the band causing them to appear as shadows and way too much fog. In the right places fog can create some amazing stills but on overload it degrades the quality of the photo. I managed a few shots in the three short songs we were allowed to shoot, you can view more photos in the gallery at the end of the review.

 The cartoons were funny, the lighting was amazing and the band played well. Vocalist Brendon Small needs to sing with more clarity his enunciation was almost non-existent. I tried so hard to get a clear shot of Drummer Gene Hoglan but couldn’t get the crisp photograph I wanted due to the overwhelming fog. Every set I have covered in the past at this venue has always been too foggy. The rest of the live Dethklok band is Mike Keneally – Guitar, Bryan Beller – Bass/Backup vocals and Pete Griffin on the Bass.

I wanted to be blown away, the conclusion of this show is that Machine Head put on a better performance than the headliners. Completely expecting Dethklok to make a lasting impression I would never forget but that was not the case here.  Their fans however couldn’t have disagreed with me more. What can I say, I have been spoiled by covering the best of the best and the only other band I have seen live that had cartoon characters was Hail The Villain. Their previous frontman Brian Crouch puts on a very entertaining set, Crouch has since moved on and formed a new band Six Side Die. They have a different sound than HTV but Bryan is just as entertaining.

Dethklok put on a respectable fourteen track performance playing the soundtrack to the cartoons. Would I hit up another show? Possibly…I love to see how bands improve on their performances and music. The Metalocalypse tour is fun to watch go see for yourself! www.Dethklok.org www.livenation.com

COPYRIGHT © 2012 FRIDAE MATTAS. All Rights Reserved

All Photography By: Fridae Mattas

NORTH BY NORTHEAST 2012 – JOANNA’S EXPERIENCE

ALL PHOTOGRAPHY BY: JOANNA GLEZAKOS FOR FRIDAE TV

NORTH BY NORTHEAST 2012

JOANNA’S EXPERIENCE

By: Joanna Glezakos

  This year was my first time at the North By Northeast Music festival and conference. I kicked Wednesday off picking up my pass from Fridae at the NXNE Headquarters and headed out to see Gus Wenner and Scout Willis at The El Mocambo. Yes, the  Scout Willis! It seemed as though everyone wanted to get a glimpse of the Bruce Willis and Demi Moore spawn. When I first arrived at the venue there were a only a few people but once the band started to play it filled quickly. Could have been the buzz of wanting to see a glimpse of star power or it could’ve been that they were actually pretty good. Scout seemed a bit shy but her voice is powerful and unique. Gus is a very talented guitar player and after a great solo in Gone, Gone, Gone, Scout congratulated him with a kiss on the cheek. As the first band of my NXNE experience they were pretty great, with a classic sound like theirs and a bit of work developing their style, they’ll go a long way. After Gus & Scout I went over to the Bovine to see The Rabid Whole.

I wasn’t sure what to expect arriving at the Bovine. As I watched the band set up their equipment and lights, I was wondering what they sounded like . They were wearing similarly designed chain covered attire and had one hell of a fancy light set-up. The Rabid Whole ended my night with a bang! As soon as they started playing, their energy filled the tiny venue that is the Bovine. They had a grand sound, great stage presence and they jumped around the little stage rocking out harder than a lot of other bands I’ve seen. The Rabid Whole just released a new record with their new lineup and are worth checking out!

I was excited for day two of NXNE as I would be heading to Yonge and Dundas Square to see what would be the most exciting day for me; No Use for a Name, Good Riddance and Bad Religion. Spending a long day in the hot sun wasn’t going to be pleasant but thankfully there were lots of ways to cool down. I first headed down to Y&D and caught a bit of Trouble Andrew, then Slaves on Dope. For a bit of a break we headed over to the beer tent for ridiculously expensive refreshments. The best part of the show at YDS was not the free show but the fact you could leave at anytime, grab some grub, go to a local restaurant or bar, grab a drink and for many even head over to the LCBO to grab a couple of beers to sneak into the pit.

After fueling up at the Eaton Centre with some delicious food we headed back to check out No Use for A Name. One of two punk bands on that day’s line-up from California, No Use put on a great performance for old fans & new. The pit filled quickly right after for Good Riddance. It’s no surprise since the band played a farewell tour in 2007 after almost 20 years together. The band finally reunited February of this year and NXNE was one of their first shows together since their breakup. They put on a good show and got the crowd pumped for Bad Religion. I made a small mistake leaving the front of the pit to hang out with some friends because I found making my way back was more difficult than pulling out teeth! It took three songs before I was close enough to the front of the stage to take some shots without being in the destruction zone that was the mosh-pit.

As the sun had set and multiple drinks had been consumed, the crowd was rowdy and wasted. I stood there singing along and getting squashed & almost crushed, I watched as more people squished into the make-shift pit expanding the barricades. There were so many crowd surfers I’m surprised no one got hurt! People were coming from the beer garden and jumping over the five foot spaced barricades and into the mosh-pit, the crowd was going wild! After a few jabs at us Canadians, Bad Religion announced their next tour would be Canadian and couldn’t wait to come back. As much as I enjoyed their performance it was too hard to have a great time in such a big crowd. As the opening night at Yonge and Dundas square, I think the organizers realized they’d have to block off Yonge street for the next few days for the events.After Bad Religion, I met up with a friend and headed over to Lee’s Palace to catch Obey The Brave and Protest The Hero. It was nice to be in a smaller venue, we got there just in time for OTB, which I was really excited to see. If you haven’t heard of them they’re a mash-up of ex-members from Despised Icon and Blind Witness and have a great sound. As soon as OTB cleared the stage Protest members came to set up the stage, the venue started to fill quickly and the room filled with whistles, cat calls and chants of “PTH! PTH!”. As Rory (lead singer of Protest The Hero) came out onto the stage, cheers erupted from the crowd;  It seemed as though I wasn’t the only one super stoked to see our hometown heroes.  As they played their set, made jokes about gaining weight & being lazy (it’s okay Rory it happens to the best of us) I couldn’t help but noticed how many people had squeezed into the venue.

If you’ve ever been to Lee’s before it’s small but has a section for the bar and seats then lowers to the pit, the front of the stage was surrounded by a barricade. The pit was packed, any movement made shook the barricade and swayed it back and forth with the movement of the moshers. They pulled crowd surfers on stage so they could dive back in. Girls and guys alike were hot, sweaty messes and the energy from band to fans was infectious. This was probably one of the best Protest The Hero shows I’ve ever been to and I can’t wait to see them again at Heavy T.O. Check out their latest album Scurrilous.

 After putting almost three thousand shots on my DSLR on Friday night, I was glad to take it easy on Saturday. I headed down to see Hollerado and Oberhofer at Yonge and Dundas square. Hollerado always put on a great show, Menno Versteeg always manages to jump of the drum kit which I got a sweet shot of, and they’re always jumping and moving around and great fun to watch.  Menno reminisced about his grandfather and even paid respects to The Flaming Lips by only firing off one confetti canon. I felt bad for the band though it was so hot that day and they were facing the sun for their entire performance. After Hollerado the crowd got another treat with Oberhofer. Lead singer Brad Oberhofer definitely ruled the stage with his presence and funky dance moves. I hadn’t heard of them before but they were actually quite good and if you like Hollerado you’ll probably like them to so check them out.

A friend of mine was playing at The Velvet Underground and I promised I’d check them out, so I headed over there when Oberhofer ended. It was a bit of trek though considering they had blocked off Yonge street on Saturday, and queen street was blocked off too because Much Music was preparing for the MMVA’s on Sunday and College was closed off because of Taste of Little Italy. Crazy weekend!

The Flow, a local hip-hop/funk band from Toronto hit the stage at the Velvet Underground. The stage is small especially when your band consists of 9 members. The band was great, they open with a drum line and as each member gets on the stage they add their instruments. Covering songs by J’Dilla and N’Dea Davenport’s ‘Whatever you Want and’ Maroon 5’s ‘This Love‘. They’ve got a unique sound, a balanced group dynamic and a above par skill level. During their live performances they always feature improvisational solos during their own songs, Saturday’s performance included a surprise harmonica solo from Sax player Andrew Racknor. If you’re looking for a great time and want to hear some new music these guys can really play, they’ve got great original tunes and know how to get the crowd going. They’re passionate about music and are always playing local shows check them out live or on their website at www.forthoseintheflow.com.

NXNE was full of many firsts for me. First NXNE, first time seeing Oberhofer, first time at Velvet Underground and I really enjoyed it. I hope it was as fun for you guys as it was for me. If you didn’t get a chance to check out any of the shows, the $58 you pay for the pass is worth it, so you definitely must check it out next year. This years performers were amazing and they only keep getting better. A great showcase filled with plenty of fantastic acts and many free shows, I’m sure you’ll find something you like! Check out www.facebook.com/FridaeTV for more photos.

www.NXNE.com

COPYRIGHT © 2012 Joanna Glezakos for FridaeTV. All Rights Reserved

ENTER SHIKARI – LIVE IN TORONTO; EDITORIAL REVIEW 2012

All Photography By: Joanna Glezakos for FridaeTV

ENTER SHIKARI LIVE @ THE ANNEX WRECKROOM

TORONTO EDITORIAL REVIEW

By: Fridae Mattas

All Photography By: Joanna Glezakos for FridaeTV

On April 8th Enter Shikari hit Toronto on their North American tour to play a packed house at The Annex Wreckroom. A venue that is too small for this band, they need to be on bigger stages because they put on the type of show where wandering room is needed for them to fully throw it down. My first time seeing these lads from The United Kingdom was last year at The Vans Warped Tour where I caught a few tunes, wow was I impressed! They have so much passion and energy; their music is an eclectic blend of various sounds and influences, including infusions of Dubstep properly used with Metalcore elements. The day started out a little grim, I had been ill for a few days already and was trying to gather the strength and energy to complete this mission. You gotta do what you gotta do! Regardless of how I was feeling I made it to the venue for the show and interview with Enter Shikari’s  Chris Batten – Bass/Backup Vocals and Rory Clewlow – Guitar/Backup vocals. A few days prior I asked Joanna (FridaeTV Photographer/Writer) if she wanted to do a few of her own questions. It was the perfect time for her to learn interviews the Fridae way and I really needed her help for this one! Thank you so much Joanna! My voice was hanging by a thread that day, I was amazed at how long it actually held out for. Finally after waiting about an hour in the cold, it was time for the interview with Rory and Chris. They were laid back and seemed a little tired but glad to chat. We were the last interview of the day so who knows how many they did prior and still had to perform! Rou Reynolds Lead Vox was at the back of the bus finishing up another interview and Drummer Rob Rolfe was back in England still awaiting his work visa. From what I recall, Guitar tech Roger was filling in for their American understudy who could not get across the border. It worked out in the end because Roger was amazing with those sticks and he just learned the songs. The interview was definitely not my best work but I didn’t think I was the worst interviewer ever, we will have to do another in the future. You can watch the interview right here.

The promoter or whoever buddy was at this event thought he was running a show at the Air Canada Centre and not a struggling bar on Bathurst, there was no need for all that extra drama and attitude. Karma caught up with that guy was pretty quickly because he was running around all night trying to catch crowd surfers to boot, before they tore the place apart even more than the previous bands did. Huge thanks to Sarah and Bob for helping me resolve the problem quickly, it does not go unappreciated! There was a variety of teenagers, some with parents but mostly in groups, one even dressed up as Gumby in full costume and all. I thought that was it for the Mr. Dress-Ups at this show but I was so wrong, there was the Enter Shikari mascot Skully in flotation, well…I think he belonged to them.

I was permitted to film one track so I found a little area by the merch tables to film from, it was the only spot that was slightly elevated from the rest of the venue other than the stage and bar. No way was I going anywhere near the stage, I really didn’t want to get trampled or air kicked by hyper surfing teens. Although it was the best observation spot in the house there was so much bass and vibration from the instruments and people jumping around, hard to focus camera. Joanna was taking shots from the stage and then migrated to safety after two songs which I am glad she did because it was a bodystorm, there were people launching everywhere! Majority of the kids were landing on the stage and diving back in the crowd as Enter Shikari tore it up. I give them major credit for still being able to rock out with all the fans soaring on and off the stage the whole set! There was a group of larries in their late teens to early twenties near by me planning their turns crowd surfing. Each one who made it onto the stage the friends cheered for and took pictures while singing the lyrics to the songs. That was amusing, it reminded me of when I went to shows with boyfriends, where they and friends would do the same shit. Boys will be boys! It doesn’t matter what generation or age, they will all play video games until they die and do the same stupid shit that you can’t help but laugh at it.

Enter Shikari played a fourteen song set, majority from their latest record “A Flash Flood of Colour”, they started out with a medley of the first and second tracks on the record System and Meltdown, the lighting was awesome because they brought the album cover to life with the triangle’s multicolour flashing lights and not just the red hue. The chemistry amongst them was evident, they looked natural and genuinely enthused as they bounced off of one another. There were a few technical issues, I think some guitar strings broke from what I could understand and Rou had to ask the sound tech to turn up a few instruments and mics a couple of times. It was fun to watch the band go from the laid back larries (guys) of the interview, to these stage personas ripping up the stage! One of the best sets I have seen from any band this year so far, it was just as exciting and unpredictable as the record but much more entertaining. They all fly around, hang off of pipes and crowd surf with the people, giving the fans a show to remember! Enter Shikari interacts and enjoys their own music as much as the fans do, if they don’t sincerely love it, they definitely deserve an Oscar!

If you are looking for a magnificently refreshing band, Enter Shikari‘s sound waves are for you! Go see them, you will not be disappointed because it doesn’t matter what age you are, prepare to be blown away. Currently on tour somewhere near you and I hope to be seeing them again, this time on a bigger stage where they can roam freely. If you don’t know, now you know, Enter Shikari is Fridae approved! You can watch the video of the first track below and can find more photos of the set on www.facebook.com/fridaetv.

COPYRIGHT © 2012 FRIDAE MATTAS. All Rights Reserved

THE WONDER YEARS – LIVE IN TORONTO EDITORIAL REVIEW

All Photography By: Anthony Crittz

THE WONDER YEARS

LIVE EDITORIAL REVIEW

TORONTO

By: Anthony Dell’Orso

 

Walking into a sweltering venue usually isn’t a problem for me, but I forgot I was going to a show filled with rabid kids going nuts over every act that’s on a bill. My choice of wearing a sweater was poor tactic indeed. Wednesday March 14th The Wonder Years took the Annex Wreckroom’s stage by storm! Singalongs and chants were heard often from the crowd as they screamed the bands lyrics back at them, which I do have a weak spot for. It really shows you how well a band interacts with their fans and how they take the relationship to a personal level. 

All Photography By: Anthony Crittz
All Photography By: Anthony Crittz
All Photography By: Anthony Crittz

These Lansdale, Pennsylvania natives have been working hard since 2005 building a name for themselves from the ashes of former bands in their area to finally get a group together that is making waves in the Pop-Punk scene. The Wonder Years were headlining the “Glamour Kills Tour” to a sold out crowd on seasonably warm March evening, I cannot say I was too impressed with the whole set. I was once in the audience’s shoes, a post puberty mess of emotions who latched onto bands with an emotional connection like “The Used”, “Story Of The Year”, and “Brand New” to name a few. I just don’t think The Wonder Years had as much substance as the aforementioned musicians. Power-Pop acts seem to blend themselves together; they all end up being on the same level music wise but I so wish some bands took a different approach to their craft and made it a little more unique.

All Photography By: Anthony Crittz For FridaeTV
All Photography By: Anthony Crittz For FridaeTV

Kicking off their set with “Local Man Ruins Everything” and then

All photography By: Anthony Crittz For FridaeTV

playing thirteen plus songs really made their die-hards go bonkers. A few of the crowd favourites that I noticed are “Don’t Let Me Cave In” and “Melrose Diner” they were going over well, the fans undoubtedly loved every moment. Vocalist Dan Campbell had great crowd control, making sure he interacted with the band throughout the set commenting on how he was “getting too old for this shit”. That was funny coming from a man who preaches to young people, yet his receding hairline made it slightly comical. The guitar work was done well with Casey, Nick and Matt trading off a few lines but Casey was the guitar hero of the night, ripping through the set with ease! The backend kept a low profile minus bassists Josh Martin’s large stature and grizzly look, which stood out on stage.  Drummer Mike Kennedy kept a steady rhythm that the band followed, well…Him and Josh kept the thud thumping going as the crowd followed along. Highlight of the set was a male patron of the event who hung upside down from the rafters of the Wreckroom. The only thing that he didn’t take into account was that the foam was sprayed for fire protection and he must of taken off a bunch of it because singer Dan was complaining he was breathing in some bad air and having troubles singing…The fan was promptly escorted out to applause.

All Photography By: Anthony Crittz

All in all, I believe this is a scene with great ability to support their fellow peers and the night seemed to be a success to the max. The Wonder Years are not leaders of a movement and I don’t think they’re trying to be, they are the hot band of the moment and hopefully these lads can lead a new slew of bands into the foray and usher in a new conglomerate of bands to keep the push going. I give the Wonder Years 3 Bear Paws out of 5.

www.TheWonderYearsband.com

COPYRIGHT © 2012 ANTHONY DELL’ORSO for FridaeTV. All Rights Reserved

All Photography By: Anthony Crittz For FridaeTV

MISFITS LIVE IN TORONTO 2011 EDITORIAL REVIEW

All Photography By: Joanna Glezakos For FridaeTV

MISFITS

LIVE IN TORONTO

EDITORIAL REVIEW

Written By: Anthony Dell’Orso

Knowing that this band is the original Horror Punks, I was expecting to kick off my Halloweek in fashion! Or so I thought…Upon entering the Phoenix Concert Theater, I was excited on the prospect of seeing a band who’s T-Shirt is one of the most recognized pieces in music history. “History” should be highlighted to make this point because I was about to witness a pioneer, a game changer, something that changed the landscape of a time that once was.

Kicking off the night was Juicehead, with their bassist Tommy Kloss not being able to cross the border, the remaining two members; Vocals/Guitar Rob Vannice and Percussionist Mike Garelli hit the stage and gave it their all. Missing that huge bass tone was a huge detriment for these boys, too bad, they had a wicked drummer and a good punk singer but I can’t base what I witnessed on that, not fair to anyone, will have to see them again full band. When the Misfits were getting ready to unleash their Horror Punk to an awaiting half filled venue, I could not help but notice the lack of Mohawks in the crowd. Maybe, it is a sign of the times? Or Am I getting old? When I was younger I remember seeing them everywhere I went, Rancid shows were always the best for fan visuals.

As Misfits came on stage, the crowd seemed half lost and confused. From where I was standing the pit was tiny and majority of these “Punk Rockers” were on their cell phones. They were not even recording the show, just using it to communicate with the outside world. Very punk, eh? The band roared through over an hour of music without many breaks, the banter in between songs was my highlight of the set, this was also due to the fact that the sound system must of been on eleven because I could not make out one song from the other, very messy indeed.  I loved the energy, the setup, the stage and most of all the vibe these Misfits Jerry Only (Gerald Caiafa) – Vocals/Bass, Dez Cadena – Guitar/Backing Vocals and Eric “Chupacabra” Arce on the Drums emitted. Unfortunately the music was so overbearing drowning the vocals most of the set not doing the band any justice and as a result it did not make for a full experience. Not the start to Halloween that I had been anticipating, maybe some things should be left in the past.

COPYRIGHT © 2011 ANTHONY DELL’ORSO FOR FRIDAETV. All Rights Reserved

THRICE LIVE IN TORONTO EDITORIAL REVIEW 2011

All Photography By: JOANNA GLEZAKOS FOR FRIDAETV

THRICE

Live in Toronto 2011

Editorial Review

   

Written By: Anthony Dell’Orso

Photography By: Joanna Glezakos for FridaeTV

After having a night to digest what I had experienced I have come to a conclusion, Thrice is and will always continue to be a force in music that so many bands can’t seem to sustain. Upon walking into the Phoenix Concert Theater one couldn’t help but notice how early it was filling up, the crowd was eagerly anticipating Thrice’s presence. With Moving Mountains and LA Dispute opening up, neither band really had the audience going. Moving Mountains seemed to have a better connection with the crowd between the two acts, their hooks and post rock assault had an early Thrice feel which seemed to rev up the crowd. When LA Dispute took the stage, the mumbling and incoherence of Jordan Dreyer’s vocals really took away from a set that seemed to be on eleven right out of the gate.

Thirteen years since Thrice formed in Irving, California, the quartet has matured just fine, all 4 members are contributing songwriters for the past few albums and their sound is becoming an eclectic mix of style and feel that translates beautifully into a live performance. Dustin Kensrue’s vocals have that immense concise way of conveying the album sound precisely; capturing the essence and mood each song deserves and not to mention he knows how to keep an audience holding onto his every word.

Photography By: Joanna Glezakos for FridaeTV

Kicking off the set with “Yellow Belly” and dishing out songs for over an hour and half the sold out crowd was singing and shouting along for the whole duration of the set. The sing-a-longs were spot on; almost “anthemic”, I’m sure there were goosebumps running rampant in the Phoenix on this night. While delving into songs from most of their LP’s, they also managed to make note of the “Invisible Children” campaign which is a movement seeking to end the conflict in Uganda and stop the abduction of children for use as child soldiers. Every night after each show, Thrice tweets a secret show location and an acoustic set is done in a nearby park from each venue and it’s all in effort to bring attention and much needed awareness to such a noble cause, good on you boys!

Photography By: Joanna Glezakos for FridaeTV

The vibe in the room was electric the whole night and I couldn’t help but watch the people around me more than the band sometimes. The people’s energy was bouncing off the walls and it’s something you don’t see at shows that often nowadays. “Fire Breather” off “The Alchemy Index” seemed to have garnered the best response for the night, with Teppei Teranishi’s flawless Guitar work it was a guaranteed crowd favorite. Teranishi also utilized his Piano skills, filling out a sound that just needed that little push mostly because of the power house Breckenridge brother rhythm combo of Eddie (Bass) and Riley (Drums). The duo kept the heads boppin’ and the band in check, minus a small drum roll that was flapped there were no qualms with anything about their performance.

Photography By: Joanna Glezakos for FridaeTV

Finishing the set off with “Anthology” (Major/Minor LP), Thrice came back on for the encore and busted into older tunes that sent the fans into a frenzy, capping the night off with “Phoenix Ignition” and “To Awake and Avenge the Dead” from their earlier days. This sent the crowd on a brisk autumn evening feeling warm and satisfied after relishing in a band that seems to get better with age and it doesn’t seem as though they’ll be slowing down anytime soon. If you have the opportunity to see Thrice for yourself go and buy some tickets you rock fans! Many thanks go out to the always courteous folks over at Live Nation!

COPYRIGHT © 2011 ANTHONY DELL’ORSO FOR FRIDAETV. All Rights Reserved

Photography By: Joanna Glezakos for FridaeTV

2011 ROCKSTAR UPROAR TORONTO – EDITORIAL REVIEW

Photography By: Fridae Mattas

TORONTO 2011

By: Fridae Mattas

Photography By: Fridae Mattas

This year Avenged Sevenfold were headlining the Rockstar Uproar festival which hit up thirteen cities prior to Toronto, last date being Montreal the night before. I heard there was major rain in Montreal and I hoped Toronto would hold out. So far the weather was incredible, the sun was shining it was a little frigid in the shade and when the sun went down but other than that it was warm among the body heat of all the people. Unfortunately it started raining during Seether so everyone sitting in the lawns and 400 level ran for cover. I guess the sky didn’t like the band so it began to cry for a few minutes until Three Days Grace’s set. Lucky for me I missed majority of the rain, too busy running up, down and around the Amphitheater before and after my media tracks to meet friends and watch the sets.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas

This year the second stage was much closer to the main stage and none of the set times overlapped. The Jagermeister stage performances were much earlier and they ended just before the main stage bands started. It was very well thought out but the area they set up the stage in was kind of awkward, if they put the mobile stage the same place they did last year’s stage and use this years time schedule, it would have worked out much better with less congestion. Other than the overcrowding the lone problem was venue security, they were a little slow letting us into the media pit to shoot the bands; we do need a few minutes to check our angles and settings. With Avenged Sevenfold I already knew the rules, they put up a curtain to set up and when the show starts, they drop it to reveal the stage. It takes about ten people to carry that massive curtain back and forth; the media had to wait until they brought it back out. That’s fine with me, they need to do whatever to make it an unforgettable experience for their fans and if that means we have to wait and miss a few seconds, so be it.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

First band on the Jager Stage we caught was Art Of Dying, as we climbed through the crowd to find the media pit entrance we thought we would miss our three but made it to the stage just in time. Pay attention if you haven’t already heard of Art Of Dying, they are a band you really need to check out if you like real rock and roll. At this time AOD consists of five; Jonny Hetherington – Vocals, Greg Bradley – Guitar, Jeff Brown – Drums, Cale Gontier – Bass and Tavis Stanley – Guitar.  The music is melodic alternative post-grunge rock. They released their major label debut record ‘Vices and Virtues’ on Intoxication/Reprise/Warner in March 2011 quickly climbing to number one on the Billboard Heatseekers chart. Many of the tracks on both records are the same just redone and in my opinion, I liked the sound of their first self titled LP ‘Art Of Dying’ better. Although the new LP has a fantastic duet to one of my favorite songs, the record is a little over produced.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas

This band has come a long way since I first saw them, they aren’t even the same band but as this unit, they have unquestionable chemistry. Art Of dying is today what the band was meant to be, they all have perceptible stage presence and talent! They clearly enjoy the music they are playing; you can see how much heart is put into the performance, when you hear how incredible the music is played live.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Drums are always solid because Jeff Brown is a sick drummer, he knows his stuff! People don’t give drummers enough respect; they have the most equipment to set up and take down and are the beat keepers, a very important piece of the puzzle! Greg and Tavis on guitars shred those strings to the fullest; they switched it up making the most of the medium sized stage keeping the crowd entertained. Of course Tavis was topless and he matched in nakedness with his wicked cool silent skeleton guitar, probably the coolest looking acoustic axe ever. Harmonies sounded flawless, this band is proof that when you take constructive criticism and apply it, magic happens! The live sets keep getting better every time and this was the first time I’ve seen them on a larger stage where they made themselves right at home. The performance would have been even better if they played the main stage where they had even more room to roam.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Bassist Cale Gontier tore it up; there are many Bassist’s who just stare out into the audience with a blank or redundant look on their face standing there going through the motions or trying to remember notes. Not Cale, he flew around with his Bass, loving every minute of being on that Jagermeister stage absorbing the energy of the hometown crowd, it looked like he could’ve played the tunes in his sleep. Hetherington’s Vocals were almost perfect; tone is much steadier and solid, blending in unison with his bandmate’s as they harmonized. On the down side there were moments of strain and some pitch issues but nothing untrained ears can hear. When Hetherington sang he had a little more confidence than in the past, flying about as he sang showing great control of his vocals.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Hetherington’s pipes were almost at par with Cale’s Cousin’s vocals when he joined Art Of Dying on stage for the tune “Raining” which features the Three Days Grace front man. It’s definitely an amazing track on a fantastic record and Gontier sang it well with Hetherington. It was good to see the cousins rocking out together and two of Canada’s best male singers sharing the same stage singing one of my favorite songs, epic! The five song set gave Jager stage headliners Protest The Hero a run for their money! Actually, Art Of Dying will give any band a run for their money because they are continually improving their live sets and creating catchy rock tracks people love. Judging by the last tune in their set when the whole crowd sang along to “Die Trying”, Art Of Dying is a force to be reckoned with! Great, now I’ve definitely inflated their egos (Laughs).

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Phtography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Closing things off on the Jager stage it was Protest The Hero’s turn to rock out, how does any band follow a guest appearance by Adam Gontier, really? A few people wandered off but there were more than enough people filling in the empty spots like a revolving door, some would leave, others would enter. I haven’t seen Protest The Hero live since that crazy Hideout show where it was body overflow. Protest The Hero are five larries from Whitby, Ontario, they formed in 1999 and have had the same band line up which I find is extremely rare for rock bands, they usually change members like they do girlfriends and band names. Moe Carlson – Drums, Rody Walker –Vocals, Tim Millar – Guitar, Arif Mirabdolbaghi – Bass and Luke Hoskin – Lead Guitar. They kicked off their six tune set with ‘C’est La Vie’ and just brought the Protest the Hero flavor of progressive melodic metal to the Jagermeister stage. Like Art Of Dying they were extremely personable with the people, loving the fact they were playing in Toronto because they are from here (Well, close to Toronto for most of them). 

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Protest The Hero front man Rody Walker was very vocal about current Toronto mayor, Rob Ford by making comments like “I hate Rob Ford!” Don’t worry Rody, most of us totally agree with that one. I guess his belly lint eating during ‘Bone Marrow’ gave him a burst of jibbers, but it’s true, who actually voted for Rob Ford? PTH put on a decent set, not the best I have seen them but it was close, vocally it was a little pitchy and diction needs work but I do admire Walker’s range and stage performance he did what a lead vocalist should, entertain the crowd. I wish Guitarist Tim Millar would put more effort into playing, it didn’t look like he was too excited to be on stage, he just stood there most of the time strumming the chords on his end of the stage (stage left, audience right). If you don’t like it, don’t do it, there are many guitarists out there who would trade spots. Thankfully his fellow band mates and lead guitarist Luke Hoskin brought some life into the performance, still have not seen any guitarist perform like Finger Eleven’s Rick Jackett does, he is phenomenal. If you haven’t seen either Art Of Dying or Protest The Hero live or have listened to their music, you certainly need to.

Photography By: Melaine Schade For FridaeTV
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

I wish there were more festivals like this when I was a teenager (Wow I feel old when I say that although I’m still in my twenties). Most of the bands in the lineup were signing autographs at different times throughout the day and wrapped up just prior to the main stage performances. They even had eye candy for the fellas with a Miss Uproar contest where a few females would compete to be named Miss Uproar for the City they were in. Art Of Dying’s Tavis and Jonny did the honors introducing the contestants and announcing the winner for Toronto (Sarah), a task I’m sure they did not complain at all about. I did not catch Escape The Fate I honestly do not remember where I was at that point, probably wandering or talking to people but that was for the best because I was not feeling their music from what I could hear as they started on the main stage. Bullet For My Valentine were up after they announced Miss Uproar Toronto, I was excited because I heard good things about them and their music wasn’t so bad either but could they pull it off live? Bullet For My Valentine are from Bridgend, Wales they began their Journey in 1998 before releasing their major label UK debut ‘The Poison’ in 2005 and on February 14th 2006 they released the LP in the United States.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Since dropping their first record in 2005 they have released two more albums most recently ‘Fever’ which was released in 2010. This band was new to my eyes and ears so I was expecting Matthew Tuck – Vocals, Michael Paget – Guitar, Michael Thomas – Drums and Jason Jamesfor on Bass to blow my mind. The crowd was anxious when the intro started in, once the British flag backdrop came down with a fist bursting through it holding the band’s name, the fans exploded. Almost everyone on the floor was singing along to all of their songs from the opening track “Your Betrayal” to the last tune of the set ‘Alone’. They didn’t blow my mind but they didn’t waste my time either, the set was promising and I did love the guitar solo near the end of the set. The whole band participated in entertaining the crowd, vox even migrated around the stage to different risers and Bassist Jason Jamesfor has great tone when he screams it sounded amazing! I kept asking everyone if Vox and Lead Guitar were brothers because they look alike and both played those sexy flying V’s similar with ease. I need to see them live again; they were definitely repeat performance worthy. If you get the chance, do it! The Rockstar Uproar Festival is still touring check the website for dates.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
A little sad that Sevendust wasn’t performing in Toronto, I really wanted to see them live but I guess I’ll catch them next time they hit TDot. Seether was on stage next, I was never really a fan, some of their music is tolerable but honestly the only song I actually do like is ‘Broken’. The duet front man Shaun Morgan did with Amy Lee of Evanescence which surprisingly was played during our three media tracks, it sounded good enough but was missing the flavor of Amy’s fabulous vocals.
Photograph By: Fridae Mattas

Something about this band was not floating my boat, as I listened and watched them on the stage I was getting sleepy because they were indeed boring me. The only thing that amused me were the decorations on Morgan’s mic stand which looked like these giant flesh and metal testicles hanging as he sang. Bassist, Dale Stewart was the main source of entertainment for the crowd because front man Morgan just stood behind his guitar most of the time occasionally moving but not too far, I don’t think he wandered over to the other side of the stage at all. We all know drummers aren’t mobile and John Humphrey couldn’t do anything more, he did what he needed to do and that was keep smash those cans. Shaun’s vocals were solid it just wasn’t a unique sound, he bounces between emulating Cobain to mimicking Pearl Jam vox Eddie Vedder, he even wore flannel. I didn’t hear any Shaun Morgan, if they can write better songs, Morgan finds his voice and loosens up a little, it might work. I guess the reason why I never liked this bands music is because they are unoriginal,  perfect example is the last song in the set ‘Remedy’ which had different lyrics to Nirvana’s ‘Come as You Are’ music and melody. That’s not cool ever; I hate it when bands and artists recycle songs especially when they make their own version and it doesn’t even come close to the original. It was funny to me because I was like wait, are they covering Nirvana? That would have been cool if they did a Nirvana cover but as they played it, clearly it wasn’t a Nirvana tune, Cobain wasn’t the singer and I didn’t know any of the words. I just sang the Nirvana lyrics to myself because that melody and those chords in that order are originally Nirvana not Seether. This band will not be selling out stadiums anytime soon; the songs are not strong enough to carry them to that level. Bullet for My Valentine’s performance was much more entertaining, they should have switched set times.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Just before Seether’s set ended it started to rain which kind of sucked but for me it was fine, at least there was no mud at the Molson Canadian Amphitheater! I wish I had my photographer Melanie Schade for the last two bands because it was insane in the media pit. One of the assbob photographers told me not stretch out my hand a lift my camera in the air during Avenged Sevenfold. I was gonna deck the bastard because he was much taller than I, about six feet tall (I’m only 5’8) and he even stood on his briefcase to take shots blocking most of my and everyone else’s Three Days Grace pictures but we didn’t say anything. There were risers on top of an already high stage, I have to lift my camera to get the drummers half the time, unlike them; I shoot the whole band and not just the vocalist. When I’m shooting a band and there is space to move around, I shoot as many angles as I can, trying to get individual shots of every member in the band and group shots which are harder to obtain on the bigger stages. Most other photographers and media outlets just care about the front person, why? I don’t know but I have respect for everyone on the stage.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Three Days Grace began their set with ‘The Good Life’ and as always Gontier didn’t even need to sing, the crowd filled in for him which must be an incredible feeling. This time even Bassist Brad Walst was coming out of his shell, as was Barry Stock who was rocking a dual neck guitar for a few of the tracks like ‘Pain’. Drummer Neil Sanderson not only rocked those cans giving his all he always sings backup to help round out the sound.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The performance was a pleasant visible progression from last year’s show down the road at The Direct Energy Centre. Vocals were still a little pitchy but they are strengthening, Gontier also plays the guitar for some of the tracks and flies around to entertain the people. They didn’t have any pyro for this set which was okay because from what I saw the crowd was impressed by the constant high energy vibe. After playing one of my favorite tracks ‘I Hate Everything About You’ they played ‘Home’, another track I like but they made the tune even better by throwing in Eminem’s ‘Lose Yourself’. The whole amphitheater went wild, the guys in the VIP box just a few feet in front of me were hugging it out and chest bumping each other as we all attempted to rap along with Adam.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I do think they should have been allowed to play a few more tunes than Seether considering last year when Disturbed was headlining, Avenged Sevenfold had a ten track set with pyro and everything. Regardless of the short set it was an incredible performance with a lot more audience interaction making it a little more intimate and special for them. One thing that stood out because it was very peculiar was when Adam had a little schizo monologue moment arguing with his skeleton hand mic stand before getting into the next track. That was the weirdest thing I’ve seen all day but I guess maybehewas talking to himself in a way. Go watch Three Days Grace when you get the chance, you will not be disappointed.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography BY: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

Last year this band blew me away and they weren’t even headlining, this year their stage show was just as exceptional only difference was the vibe and vocals. This time Matthew Sanders (M. Shadows) vocals just didn’t sound right, most of the performance he sounded flat and congested, too nasally for my ears especially during the ballad dedicated to his lost friend and bandmate “Jimmy ‘The Rev’ Sullivan”. It was a great effort on Shadows part and the tune is a good song just not greatly sung yet. Sanders vocals still need work to pull off a proper melodic power rock ballad but it is surprising he even attempts them. That is an admirable quality in a person, showing persistence to keep growing and evolving. Go on with your bad self and continue learning and expanding your talents, don’t stop those vocal lessons; you need help to release your inner gospel singer (Laughs).

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

The fans loved it, regardless of what I have to say because they were making some serious noise! Last year Avenged Sevenfold had the hanging man with the cool nightmare house and fabulous pyrotechnics, this year there was a huge bat skull as the backdrop, it shot fire balls and  the skull’s eyes lit up at times. With their exquisite lighting the stage looked unbelievable. They came in with a bang, fire streams exploded as the intro played followed by opening track ‘Nightmare’. Bassist Johnny Christ was the most genuine out of the guitars, Zacky Vengeance and Synyster Gates were a little boring as lead and Rhythm, they eventually started getting into it but come on guys give the people what they came to see, don’t leave all the work to Shadows. As the headliners, you have to school all of the other bands because more is expected of you. I loved that they played ‘Bat Country’ because last year they did not and Shadows like the entertainer he is, pointed that out.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

For the finale during “Unholy Confessions” the wings of the skull bat were set a blaze as was the top of the skull. It’s always amazing when there are flames flying everywhere, absolutely fantastic to watch. I am kind of a pyro, I love playing with fire. This year Mike Portnoy was not the drummer because he was just temporarily filling in for Avenged Sevenfold’s lost brother “Jimmy ‘The Rev’ Sullivan’. They did however find a newbie, Richard Arin Ilejay as the beat master for this tour.  His future with the band is still undecided but for now the kid does some pretty good work handling those sticks. Avenged Sevenfold put on a show not many will be able to top but Three Days Grace took it home vocally, they had home-base advantage.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Fridae Mattas

This year The Rockstar Uproar festival had a better lineup and was much more organized minus the confusion at the beginning. There were some families and a few females but most of the people who were at the show were males, it was not sold out but I would say there were over 10,000 people rocking out to the tunes! If the Rockstar Uproar festival comes to your city with these bands and you like alternative to heavier rock, go see it! Actually, run like the wind because this show is totally worth your money and more. I am looking forward to next year, curious to see who will rock our faces off in 2012. Major thank you goes out to my awesome Jager stage photographer Melanie Schade and the amazing people at AM-Media for all your help. You can find more of the Rockstar Uproar festival photos on the slide show below or on FridaeTV facebook, both sets are mostly different.

COPYRIGHT © 2011 FRIDAE MATTAS FOR FRIDAETV. All Rights Reserved

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