Gig Review

Billy Talent
Cancer Bats, Canterbury
Brixton, Academy
1st November 2009
Billy Talent                 Cancer Bats           
Photo Of Billy Talent © Copyright TriggerDue to booking tickets through the official Billy Talent website and them being slack in sending tickets out, when we got to the Academy tonight we had to join the box office collection queue, the queue was massive due to the fact that the show wasn’t sold out tonight with people also queuing to buy tickets on the door, after a good twenty minutes of queuing, we finally got in, but then I had to retreat out of the venue again and go down to the stage side door to pick up my photopass, by the time I finally got into the venue Canterbury were playing there last song so I never got a true feel of their live stage show.

I had a quick walk around the venue, checked out the merchandise and had a quick beer before making my way to the front of the photo pit to wait for the Cancer Bats to take to the stage, minutes later the lights dimmed and the Cancer bats took to the stage, front man Liam walked on to the stage all slow and casual and as soon as the first guitar riff was knocked out he was running all over the place like a mad man possessed, maybe he still had a bit of that spooky Halloween sprit as after all Halloween was only a night ago, from the photo pit area the Cancer Bats put on a massive energetic show that was full of aggression and massive noise, but when I came out of the photo pit and headed towards the back area of the venue to watch the rest of their set, I had a sense of feeling that I was the only person in the Academy tonight who wanted to see the Cancer Bats as the crowd was stale just standing still and most probably thinking what the hell is this music, as to be fair the only thing the Cancer Bats have in common with Billy Talent is that they both hail from Canada, but musical wise both bands are very different, the Cancer Bats did seem a bit odd creating the chunky riff-tastic sounds they create on the massive stage at the Academy and it gave me the sense of feeling that no matter how hard the Cancer Bats work there aren’t going to get much bigger than what they are and it’s not from a fault of their own as they are one of the most hardworking biggest touring bands who spend more time in England than they do back home, but their music just doesn’t cut with everyone.

Photo Of Billy Talent © Copyright TriggerThe Cancer Bats did play a massive range of songs starting with ‘Hail Destroyer’ and finishing with ‘Lucifer’s Rocking Chair’, with many big songs in the middle such as ‘Pneumonia Hawk’, ‘Bastard’s Waltz’, ‘Deathsmarch’ and even a brand new song which leaves you with hope that a new Cancer Bats record is on the way, overall a good set but sadly it was the wrong time and place for the Cancer Bats tonight.

It took a good thirty minutes to prepare the stage for Billy Talent but as soon as the lights went off in the venue and the curtain fell off revelling a big backdrop saying Billy Talent everyone knew that the time they had been waiting for had finally come, the band took straight to the stage and kicked off with ‘The Devil Can’t Testify’ and just hearing the vocals from front man Ben Kowalewicz got the crowd in a mad frenzy with people moshing like crazy and many crowd surfers having to be carried over the barrier by the heavily working security.

The whole of the Billy Talent set seemed like a greatest hits and that is because each and every Billy Talent song is so good, they are a band who manage to excite you no matter what they do, in total they played 16 songs and they ranged from ‘Devil In A Midnight Mass’, ‘Rusted From The Rain’, ‘Devil On My Shoulder’, ‘Surrender’, ‘The Ex’, ‘Line And sinker’, and each and every one of these tracks had the same positive reaction from the crowd.

Photo Of Billy Talent © Copyright TriggerI did feel that the set was slightly scripted as when Helen went and watched them a few days before in Birmingham, Ben made an announcement about Green Day playing down the road, and he did exactly the same tonight but luckily the Brixton crowd was more positive than the Birmingham and cheered the announcement.

The biggest highlight to the set was the en-core, Billy Talent left their two best song’s right until the end and launched into a frenzy of ‘Fallen Leaves’ followed by ‘Red Flag’, the crowd erupted for both songs, with the majority of the people around me doing their best air guitar impressions rocking out for the last couple of minutes of the show.

Overall Billy Talent put on an amazing show, a show that I will never forget and a show that sit’s nicely within the top ten gigs that I have ever been to and that is some achievement as I have been to a fair few shows, I can’t wait for Billy Talent to come back to these shores and I really hope Green Day invite them over to support them on their massive Wembley Stadiums shows that’s announced for Summer 2010, only time will tell.

Cancer Bats – 3/5
Billy Talent – 5/5

Review By Trigger

 Billy Talent

Benjamin Kowalewicz (Vocals)
Ian D'Sa (Guitar)
Jon Gallant (Bass)
Aaron Solowoniuk (Drums)

 Cancer Bats

Liam Cormier
Scott Middleton
Mike Peters
Jaye R. Schwarzer



 Band Related Links
Billy Talent Myspace
Cancer Bats Myspace
Canterbury Myspace
 Review Score Code
- Top Cheese
- Brilliant
- Pretty damn good
- Ok I guess
- What Was That?