By: TJ Liebgott
April 20, 2009
Hardcore/screamo bands Four Year Strong, Pierce The Vail, Cancer Bats, Bring Me The Horizon and Thursday took over the Kool Haus for the early, all-ages show last week as part of the Rockstar Taste of Chaos Tour. Unfortunately for most of the show, the sound was overly muddy and drenched in the room’s natural reverb, proving that the Kool Haus may be better suited for the club scene than as a live music venue.
Headlining band Thursday warned the audience about using music for promoting social/political messages you believe in instead of fashion, which could have easily been directed towards opening band Four Year Strong. Starting off their show in matching FYS Football jackets and bouncing back and fourth between post-hardcore and power-pop songs, FYS got a crowd of worked up teens right into the action, but lacked substance.
For more information on Four Year Strong visit: www.myspace.com/fouryearstrong
Switching between high piercing vocals and gruff barking, Pierce The Vail’s second half of their set ended much better than it started. Combining multiple elements of hardcore, metal, emo, and punk, PTV didn’t have many songs that stood out expect for "Currents Convulsive" and a great cover of the Michael Jackson classic "Beat It."
For more information on Pierce The Vail visit: www.myspace.com/piercetheveil
Hometown band Cancer Bats brought their all to Taste of Chaos. Playing songs off of Birthing The Giant and Hail Destroyer, Cancer Bats were the heaviest band of the night. Highlights included "Lucifer’s Rocking Chair" and closing song "Hail Destroyer," which featured guest vocals possibly by Thursday’s Geoff Rickly (it was very chaotic and hard to tell!). After listening to Hail Destroyer, it was great to see that Cancer Bats brought the intense energy from their album to the stage. Barely breaking between songs, Cancer Bats’ set was extremely energetic and looked more like the fresh first performance of the tour instead of a tired set that might be expected from a band playing their second last night of an exhausting two-month tour.
For more information on Cancer Bats visit: www.myspace.com/cancerbats
When UK imports Bring Me The Horizon took the stage, it was clear that the 3/4 full Kool Haus audience was there to specifically see this band. As BMTH entered the stage, the crowd erupted into a mad frenzy that didn’t stop for the 40 minutes that they played. Complete with mass amounts of fist pumping and circle pits, BMTH stood out with tracks like "Medusa." Fans were invited back to an after party at Toronto club the Social where lead singer Oliver Sykes would be DJing. Unbeknownst to BMTH, 95 per cent of their fans wouldn’t be able to make it past the bouncers.
For more information on Bring Me The Horizon visit: www.myspace.com/bmth
Having never heard headlining band Thursday, I didn’t know what to expect. I assumed they would be just like most of the bands on Taste of Chaos, switching between heavy and melodic, and for the most part they did. However, Thursday did so with a heightened precision and musicianship that most of these post-hardcore bands lacked. Although the majority of the crowd had left by the time they started, Thursday played fan favourites like "Understanding In A Car Crash," "Resuscitation of a Dead Man" and "Counting 5-4-3-2-1," with as much heart as if the venue was filled to capacity instead of the 60 or so people that managed to stick around. For those that left, they missed an incredible set that may have been Thursday’s last in Toronto.
For more information on Thursday visit: www.myspace.com/thursday