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

REFUSED LIVE @ THE SOUND ACADEMY 2012 – FEATURE EDITORIAL REVIEW

REFUSED

LIVE @ THE SOUND ACADEMY 2012

FEATURE EDITORIAL REVIEW

By: Fridae Mattas

It has been fourteen years since Swedish Punk band Refused hit the road together. They dropped one last record “The Shape Of Punk To Come” in 1998 and called it quits. Recently, the band reunited to do a tour hitting up various venues across the globe, one of those stops was Toronto for two nights at The Sound Academy.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas

The current band is: Dennis Lyxzén – Lead Vocals, David Sandström – Drums/Melodic, Kristofer Steen – lead Guitar/Bass, Jon Brännström – Backup Vocals, Rhythm Guitar, Magnus Flagge (aka Magnus Björklund) – Bass/Cello.

Photography By: Fridae Mattas
Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV
Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV

We hit up the July 23rdshow, it was packed but not sold out like the previous evening for the first show. The venue filled up nicely and the crowd was fantastic. As a bonus we saw some cool lightning action by the water as we waited for the bands to start. There were a few people I recognized at the show; it was good to see familiar faces. I was texting by the pit entrance waiting for OFF! to hit the stage as the security guard excitedly pointed out a member from Billy Talent as he passed us by, it’s always awesome to see male security guards teenie out! OFF’s set began at about 9:30 and they played until approximately 10:15. I have never heard of OFF! before so this was intriguing to me, I always like to see fresh bands because it leaves me curious to see how they sound without anyone’s opinions trying to cloud my ears.

OFF is a Hardcore punk band from Los Angeles, the band formed in 2009 known to be a supergroup of sorts and consists of; Keith Morris – Vocals (Black Flag, Circle Jerks), Dimitri Coats – Guitar (Burning Brides), Steven McDonald – Bass (Redd Kross) and Mario Rubalcaba – Drums (Hot Snakes/Earthless/Rocket From The Crypt).

Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV

The tracks were so short and the vocal mic didn’t have the greatest levels to start, eventually the sound evened out but it really didn’t matter, my three tracks were over. The guitar sounded amazing but was drowning out frontman Keith Morris’ vocals. The band had great energy and I was enjoying their performance but was getting restless because Morris talked longer than he sang, it was boring me. I wandered off to the patio for a smoke, I could still hear the band which was fabulous and could watch the set at the bar on a flat screen TV. The Sound Academy is a fantastic venue, it’s only hindrance is the lack of TTC access.

Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV
Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV
Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV

Set time for Refused was eleven but they rocked the stage earlier than expected. They had this big reveal before the first tune so we had to wait until it was dropped and put away. This was nothing new for me, many bands I have covered do this and of course I don’t mind, everything is for the fans. They were so excited and loving every second of Refused being on that stage. I always try my best not to get in the fans way because they just want to enjoy their favorite band live without big heads in the pit for the whole set. I understand why the three track rule exists but it would be smart to have media do songs 4, 5 and 6, because with most sets the kinks are usually worked out by then. The only artist I have ever covered that has had media shoot songs 4, 5 and 6 instead of the first three was Rapper Nas, very bright on his team’s part. 

Refused started in with Worms Of The Senses / Faculties Of The Skull, I wish I could have filmed the reveal but we had to wait. If it weren’t for the fans I wouldn’t have been able to film Liberation Frequency because security thought the three tracks were already over until the fans confirmed they only played two, thank you! They thought the long intro and first two songs were it, many security guards make that mistake and that lack of communication gets very annoying. Thank you so much to AEG/Goldenvoice Canada and new Fridae TV photographer Dipan for taking some cool shots. You can watch the mentioned songs by clicking the title links and can find more photos here.

Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV
Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV
Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV
Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV

These extremely enthused and energetic Swedes put on a spectacularly entertaining show, frontman Lyxzén was flying all over the place doing his thing. By the end of the set he was topless, it was a scorcher that day and he first came out in a suit. The band was so impeccably crisp, I loved how the guitars sounded, very clean with a few crazy riffs. The only thing I have to say is the  rest of the band needsto match the singers vitality. They seemed a little delayed at first but once they warmed up they got into it a little more . It is hard to be the lead, many artistic performers are shy and others love to soak up all the attention. What I have come to notice is the shyer modest artists are usually the extremely talented, unlike the majority of the “Artists” that crave all the attention and boast profusely about how gloriously amazing they are. When on stage everyone gets nervous, unless you are bored with your job or intoxicated to the point where the whole audience looks like DeadMau5 you get nervous.

Photography By: Dipan Cheema For Fridae TV

The trick is to act, create a character or stage persona to help you be who you want to be on that stage, it makes it so much easier to calm and control the nerves. But having a different persona on stage can come with a price for many artists. For some, after a few tours they cannot find their true self becoming lost in the world they have created. And the lines between fantasy and reality are so blurred they can’t tell the difference anymore.

As the band played on I was pleasantly surprised at how good they were, I have never in my life seen them perform and had only heard a few of their songs. Vocals were stellar, I did not hear him go flat once during the fifteen track set which is extremely rare for a live show. What I liked about this Swedish punk band is their music had melodies and guitar solos, it was not all yelling and auto-tuned pop hooks. The songs have a creative trance like ambiance with a solid structure that draws you in. Refused put on one of the best shows I have seen this year and they didn’t need to use any pyrotechnics to make that possible. They ended off the last Toronto set with encores “New Noise” and “Tannhäuser / Derive”. If you are a punk fan and you have the opportunity to see this band live, I suggest you take that chance before it ends, who knows if anyone will ever see Refused rock the stage again.

COPYRIGHT © 2012 FRIDAE MATTAS. All Rights Reserved

Photography By: Dipan Cheema for FridaeTV

SWEDISH BAND ‘REFUSED’ REIGNITES AFTER 14 YEARS! WIN TICKETS TO SEE THEM LIVE @ THE SOUND ACADEMY!

REFUSED

ANNOUNCE NORTH AMERICAN TOUR DATES

INCLUDING TWO NIGHTS AT TORONTO’S

SOUND ACADEMY

WITH SPECIAL GUEST OFF!

 

MARCH 28TH – TORONTO, ON – Reunited hardcore band Refused announced their North American tour dates including two shows at Toronto’s Sound Academy on July 22 & 23.  In addition to previously announced appearances at Coachella and teaser shows in San Francisco and New York, the Swedish hardcore icons return from their 14 year hiatus with a slew of festival dates and stops in the US and Canada.  For a complete list of dates visit www.officialrefused.com/

Refused will be joined in Toronto by special guests OFF!  Keith Morris (Black Flag/Circle Jerks), Dimitri Coats (Burning Brides), Steven McDonald (Redd Kross), and Mario Rubalcaba (Earthless/Hot Snakes/Rocket From the Crypt) form the 4-piece OFF!  Together, they’re as confrontational as ever, lunging inside the aesthetic of West Coast hardcore to push life’s most provocative issues to the forefront.

 

TICKETMASTER.CA • CHARGE BY PHONE: 855-985-5000• TICKETMASTER LOCATIONS • ROTATE THIS • SOUNDSCAPES

 www.OFFICIALREFUSED.com

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