JUNE 28th 2011

Review & Photos By: Char Tupper

 The Hate Crew Deathroll has begun, the Finnish boys have returned on “The Ugly World Tour” in support of their new record, “Relentless Reckless Forever” that came out in April 2011. Along this ugly tour, they joined forces with The Devin Townsend Project, Septicflesh, and Obscura. Tonight at the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver, BC let us begin with none other then the German technical death metal band, Obscura.

Obscura was founded in 2002, and has toured with many big name bands such as Cannibal Corpse, The Faceless, Children of Bodom, Suffocation, and many others. These guys are truly making a name for themselves, and touring currently in support of their newest release, “Omnivium” that was released on Relapse Records in March of 2011. These guys have also had the chance to tour Japan alongside Nile and Triptykon while also touring the globe like North America and Europe to say a few. These guys performance was very captivating and epic, with blue and white lighting casting epic rays of light around them. They started off with a small musical intro, and made their entrance by starting to play “Anticosmic Overload”. They had a very clean and crisp sound, however, I did find the songs themselves start to get a little too long and repetitive. However, they moved quite a bit and got the crowd involved a lot in singing and chanting.

Now, let us begin our “Communion” and once again welcome the mighty greeks to the stage, they are, Septicflesh. The stage presence of the band was quite dramatic, with 2 large flags, one saying “The Destroyer” and the other “The Architect”, along with vocalist, Seth’s micstand. The micstand consisted of a cool, almost HR Giger inspired. Looks like it came straight out of the movie, “Alien”. They opened their set with a new song, “A Vampire from Nazareth” beginning to play the intro, all dramatically making an entrance in all black clothes, then a hint of purple begins to cast shadows on the stage and the song kicks in. These guys are playing in support of their new album as well, “The Great Mass” that was released in April 2011. The new material is responding very well to the fans, along with their older material as well. Septicflesh definitely has a growing fan base here in Vancouver, and we hope for their return soon.

The mighty Devin Townsend Project is next to perform. We were all very lucky that customs didn’t hold him for a minute longer. Due to customs, Devin Townsend and the guys were stuck at the border for numerous hours, ironically being the one band from Vancouver, getting stuck at the border trying to come back to Vancouver(haha). In the end, all that mattered was the band made it in time,and played for us loyal friends and fans of The Devin Townsend Project. Walking out in a tailored silver/grey suit, bright white V-guitar, and saying a huge hello to the fans. Everyone went crazy and the room filled right up to what looked like almost full capacity. You may all recognize The Devin Townsend Project, in the sense that the vocalist, Devin Townsend is the frontman of this band, while he also fronted Strapping Young Lad, that at this current date is no more. However, his new creation is a huge success around the world, and welcomed to Vancouver with open arms and lots of love by his city. Devin walking all around the stage making faces, and saying “Hi, How are you?” to the random fan, or even photographer and security. He was quite the performer, personally not a fan of the music, not quite my usual taste, but I truly respect his performance and work ethic and how he has put Vancouver on the map for Metal around the world.

The night is drawing close to 11pm, and we all are getting excited and revved up for the band we have all been waiting for, the Hate Crew themselves, Children of Bodom. Forming in 1993, and have 7 full length albums under their belts, these Finnish men have truly conquered the world in only a few years when they released, “Follow The Reaper” in 2000, and have been one of metal’s most successful bands ever since. This is certainly one band, that many fans and critics have debated for years where to categorize them genre wise, but, Children of Bodom has done it, I truly believe they are their own genre, because they have quite a unique sound all their own. Their stage set-up consisted of torn sheets that hung above them, along with the “Relentless Reckless Forever” cover backdrop. The band opened up their set with “Not My Funeral”, a song off the new album. It wasn’t a bad song, I may have chosen a more “classic song” to open with, but, Im not making the setlist. I, myself, was somewhat disappointed by the set list of C.O.B., they didn’t seem to play a huge amount of their classic songs, the songs that put these guys, where they are today. However, cannot please everyone. The crowds however, seemed very energetic and welcoming to see C.O.B. again, on their headlining tour. These guys did play very well, and the band’s energy is very captivating, this once small band from Helskini, has turned into a force that is “Relentless,Reckless,Forever”.