On the metro ride to MTelus, I decided to refresh my memory with a few Papa Roach songs that I grew up listening to. Nostalgia kicked in immediately. Tapping my fingers along with the bass riffs, I made my way to a show I was very excited to see.
MTelus was filled to the brim with die-hard Papa Roach fans, and I was greeted with extremely loud music coming from what seemed like all directions. Escape The Fate was up, warming the crowd up for the night. The band was obviously having an amazing time performing. Guitarists TJ Bell and Kevin “Thrasher” Gruft were swinging their instruments around, and shredding thrilling solos behind their heads. Drummer Robert Ortiz delivered precise double bass kicks, and when paired with Erik Jensen’s bass riffs, the entire theatre shook to the beat.
Following up the previous performance, Nothing More took the stage. Lead vocalist Jonny Hawkins appeared shirtless and ready, his bandmates following closely behind him. The bass introduction to their first song, Christ Copyright, was an incredible first impression. It could be felt deep in your chest, making you feel as though your rib cage were vibrating. The crowd couldn’t get enough of those flashing lights, and Jonny climbing around various parts of the stage, showing off his drumming skills along with his powerful and deep screaming.
Around the end of their set, Nothing More made sure they went out with a bang. Standing on the drum kit, Hawkins ripped through a synthesizer, blowing the crowd back with his twisted vocals. They finished off with a giant drum solo, the four of them beating the devil out of their own and each other’s instruments. It was absolutely wild and I was left in awe at the energy this band handed to the crowd. A perfectly intense mood for the headlining band.
Finally, what everyone in this sold-out show had been waiting for. Papa Roach appeared behind a large curtain with an image of a screaming mouth printed on the surface. The audience went wild and the curtain dropped. Opening with Crooked Teeth, one of their newer songs, Jacoby Shaddix showed off his incredible voice, screaming and singing for everyone present.
They performed some more newer songs and then, after expressing their enthusiasm towards the Montreal concert crowd, they played older tracks such as Between Angels and Insects and Scars. I’m the middle of singing Scars, Jacoby switches things up and breaks into a cover of Linkin Park’s In the End, paying tribute to Chester Bennington who passed away last year. Jacoby expressed his emotions and respect towards Chester and told the crowd that the two have struggled with similar trials, such as addiction, depression, and anxiety. He reassured his listeners that they can always find comfort with the music that Papa Roach makes and that him standing in front of us and performing is proof that it’s very possible to get through such trials.
After performing a few more fan favourites, Jacoby and his bandmates finally left the stage. With all of the mosh pits and death walks that happened tonight, it’s absolutely sure that Montréal kept its reputation for insanely wild crowds. I cannot wait for any of these three bands to return to perform for us again, and I’m certain they’re excited to come back as well.
Review – Jamie Siddall
Photos – Kieron Yates
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