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Monster Truck and Alice in Chains – Montreal, Metropolis, August 24th 2014

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Monster Truck and Alice in Chains – Montreal, Metropolis, August 24th 2014

Alice in Chains - August 24th 2014 - Metropolis- Photo by Andrej Ivanov

Alice in Chains – August 24th 2014 – Metropolis- Photo by Andrej Ivanov

When one thinks of pairing two bands together that bring the new and the old together, it’s hard to imagine two bands better suited than the new wave of old school rock n’ roll sound of Monster Truck, and the old school grunge vibes of Alice in Chains (except maybe for Steppenwolf, but that might be a touch overkill, in respect to some similarities).

Monster Truck:

Having, thus far, seen Monster Truck four times, I can safely say that I am sold that these guys are a lot of fun to see and to listen to. Sadly, this weekend’s performance was their weakest one, due to factors out of their control. The stage set-up that they brought with them broke down in transit, leaving the band forced to use the house lights at the metropolis. Did it deter from the show? Well, yes in some ways, because it meant not having the full monster truck experience, IE feeling like you’re being blasted from every sensory inlet and slammed into by just that — a monster truck. Did that stop the band from delivering a killer show? Quite on the contrary; it was as though it gave them the boost to push their stage presence a bit further. Jon Harvey, lead vocalist and guitarist, seemed to sing just a bit more soulfully; guitarist Jeremy Widerman jumped around a lot more; Brandon Bliss, keyboardist played with a huge smile on his face; and drummer Steven Kiely beat the beat that much better. In the wake of small tragedies, these guys showed that they will still perform, despite set-backs and malfunctioning stage equipment. My only question is: why not use Alice in Chains’ setup? That’s one question that we will never be sure of.

EDITOR’S NOTE: We had a chance to talk to Monster Truck directly and they wanted to clear up the lighting situation and had this to say about it: “It wasn’t our truck that broke down. It was AIC’s. We always have to use whatever lights we can. We don’t have a lighting guy (cannot afford). Being an opening band and having a shortened set means we have to cut corners. Thanks for the kind words regardless!” (Monster Truck)

Setlist:

  1. Old Train 
  2. Sweet Mountain River 
  3. Runnin’ 
  4. My Love Is True 
  5. Call It a Spade 
  6. The Lion 
  7. Seven Seas Blues 
  8. Righteous Smoke 
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Alice in Chains:

The main act hit the stage full force, when Alice in Chains opened up with Dirt, the track off the 1992 album by the same name. This was quickly followed by Them Bones, the opening track off the same album, with singer William DuVall smashing through the vocals. Alice in Chains had not had the original line-up since the departure of their bassist in 1993 — replaced by Mike Inez in 1993, and who played with them until their hiatus, in 2002, when Layne Staley, former vocalist, overdosed. In 2005, the band reformed; with DuVall replacing Staley in 2006. For many a diehard fan, it is hard to accept that Staley is no longer with the band, and I have even heard some dreading what the new vocalist will sound like, but those hearts were quickly changed once they heard the force of DuVall’s vocals. To say that this man was made to play in this band is putting it lightly. DuVall’s vocals almost perfectly match Staley’s and in some ways, even surpass his. It’s true, it will never be the original, but it’s a damn good replacement. Suffice it to say that, despite their age, despite the lack of the original line-up, and despite changes, these guys are still kicking ass and taking names, and their fanbase is more than happy to oblige them. The fact that the entire crowd erupted in song when Would? And The Rooster came on as closing songs is proof enough that even Laney Staley is watching down on his former band mates with a smile as if to say: “You guys did good”.

Setlist:

  1. Dirt 
  2. Them Bones 
  3. Dam That River 
  4. Hollow 
  5. Again 
  6. Check My Brain 
  7. Your Decision 
  8. Man in the Box 
  9. Grind 
  10. Nutshell 
  11. Phantom Limb 
  12. We Die Young 
  13. Stone 
  14. Sludge Factory
    Encore:
  1. Got Me Wrong 
  2. Would? 
  3. Rooster 
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Written and Photographed by Andrej Ivanov

THE SCENe

The Scene