I Prevail + Cover Your Tracks @ Corona Theatre – 10th May 2017

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I prevail montreal review

Corona Theatre was jam-packed this Wednesday night for the Lifelines Tour, hosted by I Prevail, along with their friends from Starset and Cover Your Tracks. It was actually the first time I’ve ever been to a sold out show at this venue, and I must say I really didn’t expect I Prevail’s notoriety to grow that much in such a period of time. I remember seeing them almost two years ago as they opened for Hollywood Undead at the Metropolis, and even if I didn’t know them at the time, I was so impressed by the quality of their performance that I was looking forward to seeing them again. This sold-out show at the Corona Theatre was the perfect opportunity to see if they had the talent, energy and charisma to have their first headlining tour (Spoiler alert: the answer is YES!)

Cover Your Tracks opened for them at 7:45pm, and was done by 8:00pm, and probably holds the record for the shortest set I’ve ever seen in my entire life. They don’t even make sets that short at Warped Tour! I must say, I listened to them a few times over the past couple weeks to get ready for this show, and seeing them for 15 minutes only was a frustrating experience. Those guys have so much talent that 30 minutes, playing the whole Fever Dream record they put out back in 2016 would have been ideal. The crowd didn’t seem that much into the band during the first two songs, but slowly built interest for the following ones. I can’t remember which one they played first but the second one was “Follow Me”, followed by “Cages”, a song that reminded me of 30 Seconds to Mars and Deftones in some way. Last but not least, the band played “Striking Matches” to end their set, one of my favourite songs from the record, along with “Spin The Bottle”. I advise you to listen to it, as it has a great industrial atmosphere, along with hard-charging riffs and a quality chorus that make it the perfect song to sing-along. One bad point would be that the crowd wasn’t really into it and that they didn’t have any special equipment nor lights like the next band… Starset!

Starset, or the band that took forever to Start their Set (over 30 minutes to get ready since their screens or lights seemed to have issues), was up next! The band, from Columbus, Ohio, offered us quite a performance! As you may already guess, their name has a lot to do with astronomy, but, most importantly, with the fact that Starset’s vocalist Dustin Bates has a master’s degree in electrical engineering and has taught at the International Space University (the more you know…). He even came up with a fictional backstory for the band, that’s really interesting if you ever have the time to look into it! Their performance was quite something right from when it started, with three band members dressed up as some space explorers, with a glass wall separating the drummer from the others (I know, it’s hard to picture that when I barely know how to describe it myself, that’s why you should have been there!). The band was supported by touring members Jonathan Kampfe on the cello and Siobhan Cronin on the violin, to make their concert even more unique. Throughout the show, the band showed off their sophomore record, Vessels, released earlier this year, starting with “Into the Unknown”, “Ricochet” and “Frequency”, and followed by “Satellite”. Out of their 9 -song setlist, the band only played 2 songs from their first record Transmissions: “Carnivore” and “My Demons”. I was pretty unfamiliar with them before coming to the show and only listened to a couple songs over the past week to know what to expect, and I will be honest, nothing really stuck in my head at first, so I didn’t have any expectations from the show. But after seeing them live, they changed my mind. Their performance was not only pleasant to the ears, but also to the eyes, thanks to the screens, the stage lighting and the overall ambiance that they brought with them on stage. It wasn’t only a rock show, it was an act, a performance from out of space. The band ended their set with a “Monster” hit, riding on the instrumental highs and lows, a song I highly recommend.

The main act, I Prevail, was next for an intense set that I won’t forget any time soon! Starting with “Come & Get It” from their latest record, I Prevail set the tone right away: it was the beginning of an exciting, energetic and heavy set! “Love, Lust & Liars”, from their debut EP Heart vs. Mind, was up next, followed by the catchy “Stuck in Your Head”, that will… (wait for it) get stuck in your head for a long time if you ever listen to it. “Already Dead”, “Pull The Plug” and “Chaos” were next, for an intense time including crazy mosh pits, crowd-surfers and fans screaming from the top of their lungs.

After mentioning friends & pizza, the band covered one of the most pop punk songs of all, “All The Small Things” from Blink 182. Continuing their special medley throwing us back to the 2000s, they played a much heavier metal song from Slipknot, “Duality”, followed by Linkin Park’s “One Step Closer”, reminding me of when Linkin Park still sounded like Linkin Park (Yes, let’s talk about it! Same applies to Paramore, but I guess we should take this debate somewhere else…). What better way to represent Detroit than to also cover Eminem’s “Lose Yourself”? Last but not least, I Prevail played the cover they released in Punk Goes Pop Vol. 6 that made them well-known: Taylor Swift’s “Blank Space”. As fun as it was for the whole crowd to enjoy those covers, it was gold to see that the band was also having a blast covering artists that may have inspired them in the way they write or compose their songs.

After the latest song that may have been too pop for most people, the band turned their heavy mode ON once again, with “Face Your Demons” from their debut EP, followed by “RISE”, and “Lifelines”, my all-time favourite from their album. It was almost time for the show to come to an end, if it wasn’t for the Encore, composed of two remarkable songs: “Worst Part of Me” and “Scars”. All in all, I Prevail were even better than the first time I had the opportunity to see them. Their sound matured and their performance was almost flawless, even if some may say that they got too commercial and generic among a metalcore scene that has trouble producing anything unique. This show was a lot of fun, the crowd loved every second of it and so did I, and in the end, I think it’s what truly matters: Seeing one of your favourite bands live and having a good time with them and people around you who share the same musical tastes. I look forward to seeing them again, and I really hope it will be in the same venue, as it is one of my preferred venues to go to in Montreal.

Review – Maxime Le Huidoux

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