Simple Plan + Plain White T’s + Set It Off @ Bell Centre – 15th March 2017

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At 7pm on the dot, Set It Off got up on stage. “Montreal are you ready!?” they exclaimed. Although it was off to a slow start, the band made up for the lack of energy in the crowd. To be fair, the energy is usually not at its peak when the first band gets on stage at any show. It took a few songs before the crowd got more into it.

I was disappointed that the opening bands had such a short set list. I didn’t know Set it Off very well, even if they have been around since 2008. Seeing the band live was a great way to discover them. I enjoyed their performance and will definitely look forward to hearing more from them. Before ending the show, the band shared some words of wisdom; “If you have a dream, keep chasing it”. Set It Off took some time between the other shows to meet the fans and sign autographs. Sadly there was too much of a crowd so I didn’t get the chance to say hi, but I was happy to see how close they are to their fans and take it to heart to spend as much time as possible with them.

Once Plain White T’s hit the stage, the crowd was more warmed up and a bit more excited to get the party started. They also had a short set list but played a few of their hit songs that people knew most of the words to, including “Hey There Delilah” – and the crowd went wild and cheered as he sang the words “One day I’ll pay the bills with this guitar.” The singer chuckled and replied with “Merci.”

It’s always appreciated when they make the effort to say a little something in French here in Montreal. Plain White T’s and Simple Plan have had a longtime friendship and toured together in 2005, have co-written a Simple Plan song, and Simple Plan’s singer even named his dog Delilah.

It was not my first time at a Simple Plan concert, but it was my first time seeing them at the Bell Centre. I must say it is true that there is no Simple Plan concert like one at the Bell Centre. The energy is at a higher frequency than any other venue I’ve seen them perform at. Although the basics are the same: The crowd knows all the lyrics and sings along (I’m guilty of this myself), and get a bit more crazy when the song “I’m Just A Kid” comes on,
it’s just extra special seeing them playing in their hometown.

They are very close to their fans. When they saw a girl had a poster saying it was her birthday, she was brought on stage to take a picture with the band. There was lots of excitement for “Jet lag” and David doing his best Marie-Mai impression. There was disappointment heard when “Summer Paradise” was not bilingual although it was one of the most fun songs for the people on the floor after beach balls were thrown into the crowd. They played all their biggest hits, including “Boom” from their new album.

Simple Plan, being ever so grateful for their hometown show, had to have a little speech; “For those who don’t know, Simple Plan have been together for 15 years. We have traveled everywhere around the world and played shows in incredible places for beautiful crowds like all of you here tonight. But there is only one reason why Simple Plan can exist, why we’re here tonight, why we can continue to make music and why we can continue to live incredible experiences. There’s one reason: It’s you!” As grateful as they are for their fans, the fans are just as grateful for their music, and making such a big difference in all their lives.

There is always a special moment during a Simple Plan show and this time, that happened when they sang “Perfect” and “This Song Saved My Life”, because for that moment, the fans are not only connected to the band, but to each other as well. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again; there’s no concert like a Simple Plan concert.

Review – Jenny Watson
Photos – capturacamera.com

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