Half Assed Show Reports: Skeletonwitch & Barn Burner

Hiya. It’s been a busy couple weeks so that’s why your post count has been quite terminal.

The couple weeks of bullshit had a quite a nice payoff in the form of seeing the Toronto leg of Skeletonwitch’s North American tour with Church favorites, Barn Burner. I’d been pretty excited for this show because not only was the bill awesome it was also dirt cheap, so win win right there.

Loaded up and headed down to the city and The Hard Luck Bar at Dundas and Bathurst.  Showed up with plenty of time to spare (and drink beer) before the first band opened things up. Venue wise it’s everything you could want from a metal show, dark, low ceiling, not overly expensive beer and a low stage.

Around 9:00 things got started with the Toronto band Pariah. They were, uh… well, they were an opening band. Every song had at least one section that was fairly catchy or a solo that pretty shrederiffic. Other than that it was pretty bland and unimaginative, with a tendancy to drop into a “METILLACURRRR” vocal style that drives me nuts. Also the lead singer was wearing his own merch. I don’t care who the fuck you are, don’t wear your own merch during your set. Seriously.

A couple minutes and a beer later, Redeemer took the stage. Another Toronto based band, they cranked a blistering flavor of crusty thrash metal and hardcore. Fast, aggressive and loud as all hell, they certainly got a lot more heads nodding and people moving. The riffs were crusty, the vocals violent and the drums pulverizing, which is all you really need for some good old fashioned fun.

Another set change and another beer later it was time for my personal favorites, Barn Burner. Having already seen these guys play the Horseshoe Tavern, I had some pretty high hopes for their set with a crowd and filthy scumbags and not fairy-footed hipsters. My hopes were well founded, because even with some amp issues on the opening song they still cranked out a hair raising set of skin blistering riffs and shredtastic guitar work.. They played a new song as well, which had all the great flavor of  their previous shredding with a couple even heavier sections. Suffice to say I was tickled fucking pink by the end of the set.

Another brief interlude and it was time for the headliners Skeletonwitch to take the stage. It was pretty apparent by the number of Skeletonwitch shirts that a lot of people came just for them, so many in fact they actually sold out the show that night.

I had only really listened to their music in passing before, I knew it was some pretty good shit, I just always had something else that was drawing my attention. Suffice to say, once they opened up their set I was all eyes, ears, elbows, shoulders and heads as everybody went nuts. They played real fast and real loud, generate bigger and bigger pits as more people got sucked into the mayhem. The frontman was on point with the whole death metal shtick, dramatic hand gestures and all. When it comes to sheer entertainment value these guys were a hoot to watch and listen too.

Four hours later I staggered out onto the street covered in 100 peoples sweat, beer, blood, possibly vomit and a grin from ear to fucking ear.

Another thing to mention for all the bands. They were all around and went straight to hocking there merch as soon as their sets finished. Everyone there was dedicated to their music and what they’re doing and it showed. So go to shows, buy their merch and make sure they can keep making music.

 

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