Photograph courtesy of Amy Buck.
Making the most of a day off from a tour across America supporting Coheed & Cambria, New York’s Glassjaw crossed the border giving a chance for Toronto fans to catch the progressive metal band since their reactivation. The four piece packed the Opera House eager to relive memories from the past while anxiously awaiting the (apparently) forthcoming follow up to 2002’s Worship and Tribute.
I’ve always been familiar with the name in the early naughts but never did investigate them although I did have many friends who were fans. Having lost someone this week that was near and dear to me although I hadn’t seen in ages, I wasn’t in the mood but then thought a night of music amongst some passionate fans will turn me around and get me thinking.
Opening with “Tip Your Bartender”, the band made their flock deliriously happy immediately. In front of a greened out Puerto Rican flag and a basic light show, the four looked at home and ease over the course of roughly a dozen tracks. The sound was mixed perfectly and the Opera House held up nicely through the onslaught that wasn’t as heavy as I had expected. Technically they sounded proficient, managing to stretch out comfortably in the headlining slot.
Thinking I had to do as time signatures changed which kept me focused and preventing that spaced out drone I like to get caught up in and keeping my mind busy. Focusing on Worship and Tribute, they also offered up a healthy dose of potential new songs to appear on this long awaited third album. The crowd, completely on board, sang along to everything really squeezing to the front of the venue to catch a glimpse. Singer Daryl Palumbo easily could have let the crowd do all the singing. I liked his stage presence, part Iggy Pop, part Jim Reid, and never threatened to overwhelm his cohorts and not super chatty either.
Opening the night was Los Angeles’ Silver Snakes, another band I’m not familiar with but quite enjoyed. Despite guitars being mixed far too low in the mix and vocals mixed a bit too high, they recalled a hardcore Spacemen 3 with their droney riffs. They made the most of their half hour on stage although the response was a bit muted. Their final song of the night seemed to shake some of the cobwebs out but their entire set was a highlight for me.