After far too long, here's our first concert review of the year, but also check out this month's YouTube Channel Profiles in the post below this one! Last night saw The Elements and Late Shift rock The Rockstar Bar for their first live sets of the year, and there was a good crowd in attendance, though it didn't really start filling out until midway through Late Shift's first set. Now, here's our recap of the bands themselves!
Opening (and closing) last night were pageless local funk/hard rock quartet Late Shift, who played two sets that bookended The Elements on the bill. I could only stay for their first set, but the guys delivered an entertaining mix of covers of bands ranging from Pearl Jam, Led Zeppelin, and The Offspring to Modest Mouse, The Black Keys, and.... Sinead O'Connor?! Also unveiling an original song named "Free" late in that set, this talented quartet rocked steadily last night, with Matt Sibilo impressing on lead guitar, and Clint Wilson was solid on bass, though John Barber's vocals were slightly off, and he didn't sound quite right or with his usual range on songs like "Alive" or "Ramble On". Anthony Gagnon handled lead vocals fine on "Float On" though! Late Shift put a fun funk rock spin on their songs, and it was nice to see them again, hopefully with much more to come!
Second were the night's headlining band, fellow local funk hard rock quartet The Elements, who were up to their usual tricks in their first set with their full lineup since the fall! The longest chunk of their set featured the guys playing covers of bands from Weezer, Van Halen, Nirvana, and Green Day (among others) which they capped with a new original song, before they brought on Shane "DJ Seith" Erickson to join them on turntables for their last few songs! As previously teased on SooToday, Seith joined the guys on some rap/rock fusion tracks (including covers of Sublime and Primus) before being joined by local rapper Kyle Derasp for another original, tentatively named "Liar". The Elements sounded on form from past gigs, with Jesse Cook delivering some blistering guitar solos and James White dependably good on bass again, and Rob Speers delivering aggressive grit on vocals, but he did go out of his range a bit on songs like "Hash Pipe" and "Hot For Teacher.
The latter songs with DJ Seith were a neat change of pace too, with his turntable scratching melding well with The Elements' existing sound, and it'd be interesting to see something like this repeated in the future! Overall, this was a fun concert and it was great to finally get to a concert again after what felt like an eternity, and barring hard rock or punk bands at Rogers Hometown Hockey this weekend, our next attended concert will be night 1 of the VM Radio Battle of the Bands next week, so stay tuned for that! As for media, Local2 video cameras were on hand, and you can check out our photos at this link or at our Facebook page, plus our videos of Late Shift covering The Sheepdogs' "The Way It Is" and The Elements & special guests playing "Liar"
That's all for today, but stay tuned for our post highlighting each day's schedule of the VM Radio Battle TOMORROW, if all goes according to plan! Thanks everyone!