GIG REVIEW: Avatar, The Brains & Hellzapoppin Live at Opera House, Toronto
Swedish metal band, Avatar, brought the Avatar Country Tour to a stop at the Opera House in Toronto this Sunday night. Joining them were Hellzapoppin’, a travelling side show, and The Brains, out of Montreal, and not even sub zero temperatures deterred fans from making the trek to see Avatar perform their first headlining gig in the area.
Starting things off, the members of Hellzapoppin’ entertained the crowd with a variety of sideshow acts. Whether eating razor blades, or inserting drills, screwdrivers , or swords into a variety of places they were never intended to go, these performers all put their bodies and lives on the line to entertain the near capacity crowd. It was somewhat intriguing to be up so close in the photo pit and seeing these acts performed so close, instead of on TV as is usually the case. Definitely not for the faint of heart!!
The Brains, a psycho billy outfit out of Montreal, hit the stage running, performing an energetic fast paced set. From their machine-gun paced drumming, to the finger numbing, breakneck strumming on the double bass, these guys delivered a set that was all go, and no filler, rarely even stopping between songs to talk to the audience.
Avatar, under the watchful eye of the king on his throne, are touring in support of their brand new album ‘Avatar Country’, due for release on January 12th. They opened their set with “Glory To Our King” and “Legend Of The King”, off of the new album, which also included the king, guitarist Jonas Jarlsby, seated on his throne above the drum riser. Fans were treated to a selection of previous favourites as well, including “Let it Burn”, “The Eagle Has Landed”, “Smells Like A Freakshow”, and closing with “Hail The Apocalypse”.
The only downside for me was poor lighting, which included red and blue wash, blinding backlights, and zero in the way of front lighting, making it difficult to see what was going on onstage. An intricate stage set up including ramps and a throne loses it’s effect if the audience can’t see it properly. Overall though, the sound was fantastic and the band themselves put on a stellar show! Be sure to check out Avatar when they come to your area.