Lacklustre Silverstein overpowered by openers

Devil Wears Prada, illScarlett, Protest the Hero satisfy crowd

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009


Last Thursday, ticket holders were treated to a miraculous performance by four different bands at Cowboys Ranch.

The show opened with intense screaming by the surprisingly good Christian metalcore band, the Devil Wears Prada. Following the ear-pounding act was Mississauga band illScarlett, who embodied the opposite end of the night’s musical spectrum with its pro-marijuana lyrics and catchy tunes reminiscent of megapopular ska/punk band Sublime.

Next up was Protest the Hero, whose profound lyrics and exhilarating stage antics alone were worth the price of admission. Screamo band Silverstein finished off the set with the weakest performance of the night.

The Devil Wears Prada was an unexpected highlight, maintaining a completely insane energy throughout the set. The six-member band, including two guitarists and a keyboard player, gave a strong performance, and the bassist jumped from the stage. DWP gave a refreshingly sharp start to what would turn out to be a night of unbelievable performances â€" except for the headlining band.

Next up was illScarlett, who changed the pace with its amusing anthems and live performance characterized by happy lyrics and memorable ballads. The band combines ska and reggae, entrancing the audience enough for them to believe they were at a best friend’s keg party instead of a cramped moshpit. Crowd favourites included “Who’s Got It” and “Life of a Soldier.”

Next onstage was Whitby’s own Protest the Hero, that is on a cross-North America tour promoting its second studio album Fortress. With the hardcore riffs of its new single “Bloodmeat” and the punk rock anthem “Blindfolds Aside,” the pit during Protest’s performance turned into the most raucous all night.

Throughout the set, which saw “Palms Read” outro into “Limb for Limb,” Protest’s stage presence maintained the night’s energy.

The final performance came from headliners Silverstein. For the people who hadn’t left after being satisfied by the three previous bands, Silverstein made for a dull ending to an otherwise stellar night.

Silverstein’s piercing cries and comparatively nominal guitar work made lead singer Told’s the band’s generic guitar stylings a disappointing finale. The band opened with “Your Sword Versus My Dagger,” eliciting excited shouts from the crowd of teenagers in the mosh pit.

In its relatively short set, playing a mix of new and old tracks, Silverstein ended with the stomach-turning tune “My Heroine” and capped off its lacklustre performance with an encore of “Sound of the Sun.”

Concertgoers were still satisfied though, not because of Silverstein’s average performance, but from the stellar supporting acts.

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