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Nevermore: Live in Edmonton

November 6, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

For me, this month will be known as Nevermore November. Why? On November 5, an excellent band came to Edmonton’s Pawn Shop (the bar, not a place of sleazy business) for the first time in about five years. I had only started listening to the band in the past few months, after I even bought the tickets. At the time it did not seem like much, but that purchase turned out to be one of the most pleasant surprises of my year.

Nevermore

The show started at 9 pm with three opening bands: Hatesphere, Black Guard, and Warbringer. Each were given about half an hour to play. I decided to pass on these bands; they are “too metal” for me. And based on the rambunctiousness of the crowd for Nevermore, I was right to do so. I certainly gave 100% of my energy, the whole crowd did, but I just don’t have any metal-mosh energy to give. However, that was much of what I saw when I arrived at the venue just as they began with “The Termination Proclamation”.

Nevermore (rating: A-)

The setlist is a combination of my memory and other setlists online. Please help me in correcting any errors.

Nevermore Setlist (November 5, 2010):

  1. The Termination Proclamation
  2. Narcosynthesis
  3. I, Voyager
  4. Your Poison Throne
  5. Moonrise (Through Mirrors of Death)
  6. The River Dragon Had Come
  7. Emptiness Unobstructed
  8. Born
  9. This Godless Endeavor
  10. The Heart Collector
  11. Beyond Within
  12. Taste Revenge (Sanctuary cover)
  13. Inside Four Walls

Encore

  1. The Obsidian Conspiracy
  2. Enemies of Reality

As you can see, there is a decent spread of songs with the setlist. There is a lot from their latest release, The Obsidian Conspiracy, as well as Dead Heart in a Dead World. The rest of the albums get somewhat under-represented unfortunately, but the setlist is very strong. Not only did they choose my favorites from their newest album, but also from their discography as a whole. There were one or two songs that I had not heard prior to the concert. But with this list, I give almost every song regular listens. The only issue that arose was with the encore selection, which I thought was not only biased towards speedy thrash metal, but also weaker than the majority of the setlist. Still, the song selection was basically fantastic.

The overall sound was great too. The tone was clear for most instruments and the volume was very well-balanced. Sometimes the vocals were hard to hear, and it would be hard to pick out each note in a guitar solo on occasion. But that is usually a frequent happening in concerts, and it was a much lesser issue with this one. On the upside, the bass guitar, which is usually underhanded, was fairly audible but not overpowering. The same goes for the drums, though it is hardly ever an issue during concerts. In the grand scheme of things, the sound was crisp and enjoyable, to say the least.

Regarding the visual aspect of the performance, there was not much going on. This is to be expected for such a small venue, and it did not detract from the performance. However, it did not necessarily add much either. The background was plain and the lights were mostly constant. At times, there would be the expected light-flashing segment during fast, thrashing sections. And there were even moments where the lights were extremely dimmed or turned off, but I found this to detract a bit from the experience. All in all, it was nothing special, but was not expected to be.

The visuals were more than compensated for with the energy of the show. Both the crowd and the band were giving it their all. There was a constant mosh pit two persons in front of me which started and ended alongside the show. The audience participation was plentiful and boisterous, and the numerous spontaneous “Nevermore” chants were compelling to join. Whether it be shouting “Rise! Rise! Rise!” while moshing to “Your Poison Throne,” or singing along with the beautiful “The Heart Collector,” the crowd gave their fair share of this wonderful concert experience. But by no means was the band was not outdone by the ecstatic audience. The frontman displayed excellent attentiveness to the crowd while consistently conveying appropriate emotions. The rest of the band seemed to have fewer breaks or physical freedom to interact with the crowd, but their presence and attitude could not have gone unnoticed. A major reason for the crowd’s energy was that the band gave so much for them to feed off of. From the casual quirky jokes to the shaking of crowds hands, the band did a wonderful job of giving an energetic, interactive experience.

Aside from that, they also were spectacular on the instrumental front. The guitarist, one which I hold in high regards, was specifically stellar. That is not to dismiss the other band members; they were excellent as well. But the guitar parts seem the most challenging and technical, which in turn led me to be most impressed by Loomis’ performance on lead guitar. Dane was also terrific on vocals,  but at times he appeared to struggle a bit. I’m unsure of whether I was imagining things or not, but there would be some instances when his voice would be inaudible, or when his face would cringe and he would go for a drink of water. But Nevermore vocals are sometimes quite demanding, and Dane definitely fulfilled his role in the concert. The bass, drums, and rhythm guitars are less standout, in my opinion, than the aforementioned. Still, their flawless performance should be recognized, for they also were key contributions to this amazing concert.

 

Nevermore

I’d like to wrap things up by firstly thanking Nevermore for a great night. Some bands are meant for live performances, others are not. Believe me when I say a Nevermore concert is not one to be passed up. I cannot say if it was because of the small venue size that the visuals were merely average. But the audio was amazing, and the band has a handful of loyal followers that are sure to add a great deal of liveliness to the concert. Whereas some bands may be inconsistent with their instrumental performance, Nevermore is more or less spot-on. Given what is required to be spot-on with their music, it is a truly impressive feat to experience. Also, there aren’t really any rotten sores in their discography, so it is safe to expect a good choice of songs. Whether they are in the studio or in a live venue, Nevermore is a band whose talent can only be appreciated and amazed by. They have proven this statement true on November 5, 2010.

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