A tour consists of nothing but hardcore and heavy bands is so cool that it has to be entitled promptly as “The Cool Tour”. The Cool Tour features 8 bands with As I Lay Dying headlining, Underoath, Between The Buried And Me, Blessthefall, The Acacia Train, Cancer Bats, Architects and War of Ages. At the Toronto date on July 17th, The Acacia Train were not able to pass the border and was left out of the bill (hate it when that happens). Honestly, this metal scene is usually not my thing. But after attending Toursick and had the opportunity to check out bands like Enter Shikari and August Burns Red’s highly energetic performances, figured I would give it a try.
War of Ages
Since the line up had 7 bands so it was an early show with doors opened at 4pm. Christian metalcore band War of Ages came on first and guitarists were giving fiery hair whips along with the breakdowns while getting the crowd warmed up. The next band was British hardcore band Architects, the band have a bigger following than I expected. On the surface, lead singer Sam Carter might look like a kid but don’t let it fool you, his screams are for real. Sam Carter also jumped into the crowd swiftly and crowd surfed before getting pulled back on stage. Up next were Toronto’s own hardcore quartet Cancer Bats. I have heard so much about these locals but never had a chance to listen. Cancer Bats were extremely lively and attracted many crowd surfers, keeping the security busy.
Up next was Blessthefall and my only knowledge of the band only extends to their ex-lead singer Craig Mabbit is now singing for Escape The Fate. The band moved on, got a new singer Beau Bokan, signed to Fearless Records and release a new album “Witness”. Now they are back to take over. Overall, they put up a very entertaining set and the audience was as active as ever with waves of crowd surfers coming down on the security. Before Between The Buried And Me came on, fans were heard chanting BTBAM non-stop. Even after their set, fans were calling out for an encore. BTBAM put on an impressive set, the most remarkable thing is they played a very long instrument based song “Selkies The Endless Obsession” that gives a good interlude for the night.
This tour is definitely a test for Underoath as it is their first tour after the departure of singer/drummer Aaron Gillespie. To many long time fans, Aaron Gillespie is the band. Even I, who doesn’t listen to them easily associates Aaron with Underaoth. Though I don’t listen to the band, I have heard so many great things about their live show (when Aaron’s still in the band). Although I am not able to compare their performance that night with back when Aaron Gillespie was still in the band since I never had the chance to attend a show, it was a great performance. Being a band for so long only has its perks, they still have loyal fans who know the words to the song.
I had to miss headliners As I Lay Dying since it was getting late and my energy is slowly draining. There was this guy with a mohawk in a cutoff Misfit tee and white plaid pants who crowdsurfed at least a dozen times. He would walk out from the pit and go back in the crowd to crowdsurf and that continued for awhile. I also noticed a couple bands used classical music as part of the intro, is this a new trend? Overall, the show was intense and very dynamic but definitely not my kind of scene (I think I should just stick to the pop punk /post-hardcore haha)
Text and photos by Jessie Lau