I can’t think of another band so long-running whose output has been so consistently excellent. This truth led to my sole disappointment when I heard that the classic late-80s Thundersteel lineup had reformed: it meant that they were likely to ignore the past 20 years as if they never happened. Normally when some old band pulls a stunt like this, you wish they would ignore their last five or six albums, but Riot didn’t put out a single bad album after they retired the speed metal and screams of the Thundersteel years.
With the early May sun setting behind the Toronto skyline, the Sound Academy was surrounded by an air of excitement on this Monday night as concert-goers traveled en masse to see Opeth and Enslaved.
The warmest weekend of 2009 so far may not have been an appropriate backdrop for an evening of Canadian black metal featuring Monarque and Csejthe at the Annex Wreck Room.
It was a night of firsts and lasts – the first Hamilton appearance of Ontario’s independent Woods of Ypres, and the last show for local legends Elevator 22.
No fanfare. Zero theatrics. A barren stage except for the musicians, their instruments, amplification and a simple backdrop sporting their logo is all that Sweden’s Opeth (pictured) needed to entertain the nearly 900-strong crowd.