Gigantour Report From Vancouver, BC
Band Photo: Megadeth (?)
I went to the Gigantour show at the Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver, BC on September 9. Because I have been busy for the past little while, I haven’t got the chance to get this done until now. As far as I know, the Montreal date has been filmed for the upcoming Gigantour DVD to feature Dream Theater and the Vancouver show was filmed for Anthrax.
Although originally scheduled to play, the Dillinger Escape Plan had to back out due to an injury suffered by guitarist Ben Weinman, which is a bit of a downer. On the bright side, DEP will be back in Vancouver in November.
First up was Bobaflex at 4:30. The guys played to an almost-empty stadium, but most people don’t usually arrive to a show on time and plus it was a weekday so a lot people were probably still at work. They sounded a little too much like hip-hop-influenced nu-metal with elements of grunge and funk for the most part. I thought the vocals were interesting as they had three different vocalists alternating between screams, roars and clean singing. The only song that stood out to me was “Better Than Me.”
Nevermore was one of the bands on the tour I was looking forward to and they did not disappoint at all. Nevermore is one of the most underrated metal bands out there. Jeff Loomis is such an amazing guitarist the way he shreds. Part of me is glad he did not make it when he auditioned for Megadeth some 16 years ago or else there might not be a Nevermore today. Warrel Dane’s higher vocal range makes Nevermore stand out above most other thrash metal bands even more. I only wish they had played more the few songs they performed (including “The River Dragon has Come and “Final Product”) during their 30-minute set.
Life of Agony came on stage at 5:45 and played for 40 minutes. It has been a while since the show and nothing really stood out enough for me to remember much about them. In my opinion, they should have switched time slots with Nevermore so that Nevermore could have played a longer set.
The only band on the tour that I have seen before was Fear Factory and I was looking forward to seeing them again. Those guys really know how to keep the crowd excited right from the very first song (“Edgecrusher”). Their live shows are jam packed with energy and music was dead on. Burton C. Bell’s shouts and roars fits so perfectly with Fear Factory’s industrial metal. The most memorable moment of their set was their brief homage to Dimebag by performing Pantera’s “Walk.” They got the crowd all worked up and singing along to it. Unfortunately, they left us all hanging by abruptly stopping after just the beginning. Nevertheless, Fear Factory are great to see live and I look forward to seeing them again at the Croatian Cultural Centre in December.
The reunited Anthrax, featuring their Among the Living lineup, was up next at 7:55 and they played for 75 minutes. Scott Ian and Danny Spitz, by far one of the greatest thrash-metal guitar duos of all time, ripped it up on stage again. Drummer Charlie Benante was fast and clear. The guys in the band may be old, but they have more energy than most of the younger, newer bands out there today. Anthrax really blew away all my expectations.
Anthrax set list:
Among the Living
Got the Time
Caught in a Mosh
Be All End All
I’m the Man
I Am the Law
Megadeth were definitely the highlight of the night. I was drowned in a sea of guys with Megadeth shirts. It is always great to see frontman Dave Mustaine in Vancouver but this show was something else. As trite as it is to compare Megadeth to Metallica, I really got to say that even Metallica’s two-hour set and rotating stage last March couldn’t even match up to Megadeth’s 90-minute show that night. Megadeth had one of the best stage shows that I have ever seen. There was just a constant barrage of fireballs, loud thunderclaps and awesome pyrotechnics. It was unbelievable. Dave wasted no time with boring chitchat and dove straight into the music. The only problem was that it was so loud that Dave’s vocals and the lead guitars were hardly audible.
Megadeth set list:
World on Fire
Skin of My Teeth
Wake Up Dead
Die Dead Enough
A Toute Le Monde
Hook in Mouth
Kick the Chair
Overall, I would give the show more than 4.5 stars out of 5. What sucked was that second stage bands (Symphony X, Dry Kill Logic, etc) were dropped after the Toronto date. However, I hope Gigantour would be made an annual event.
Photos taken from the show are posted in the Photo Gallery.
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