Punk Rock But Kinda Not Tour 2014
Down and Orange Goblin
w/ King Parrot
December 14, 2014
Review & Photos by Monika Deviat
The “Punk Rock But Kinda Not” tour featuring headliners Down stopped in Calgary Alta., to play at Flames Central on December 14, 2014. Main support for the tour was Orange Goblin from England. Bl’st was not able to make it so Australia’s King Parrot were the only other band on the bill this evening. The upper levels of the venue were closed off for a private function, but this tour probably could have sold a lot more tickets to pack the upper tiers. The party upstairs did come out to watch Orange Goblin and Down it didn’t look completely empty in the upper levels.
King Parrot was the first band up and leaned to the more punk and extreme side on the bill. Later in the evening Ben Ward of Orange Goblin would describe them as Australia’s craziest band, and after watching their set you could see why. Vocalist Matt Young strode out shirtless and in a pair of pants barely staying up on his hips and bassist Wayne Slattery also sported the shirtless look. Within the first few songs Young was up into the crowd singing into their faces and then running out into the pit and encouraging everyone to move. If you didn’t participate though, the singer would change tactics and harass and antagonize people. It was during King Parrot that bands started throwing water at the crowd – after taking a sip a few sips from a water bottle they’d fling the remaining water and then bottle out into the crowd. The intense music and the antics of Young did get the crowd engaged.
Orange Goblin’s second venture to Calgary had a much better turn out – the larger venue with a better stage and view and touring with a band that has a large draw already helped numbers. The floor was packed when ACDC started playing over the speakers and the band took the stage. The band didn’t have their own banner on this tour and were set up in front a classy red theater back drop. Orange Goblin kicked things off with an older tune, “Scorpionica” and then went right into the fist pumping tune “Devil’s Whip” off this year’s release Back From the Abyss [Candlelight Records, 2014]. Martyn Millard laid down the heavy southern influence basslines while Chris Turner seamlessly went from more punk beats to driving heavy metal rhythms behind his drum kit. Joe Hoare was entertaining to watch as he expressively delivered thunderous riffs and slick solos. Vocalist Ben Ward was interacting with the crowd and his bandmates during and between songs. After introducing the zombie themed tune, “They Come Back (Harvest of Skulls)”, Ward zombie walked over to Hoare and pretended to eat the guitarists brains. “Some You Win, Some You Lose” really had the crowd going as did closers, “Quincy the Pigboy” and “Red Tide Rising”.
Finally it was time for Down to come on stage. Orange cabinets lined the back of the stage and the ornate carpets were fully revealed with the other bands’ equipment taken off stage. Drummer Jimmy Bower took his place behind his kit and pointed his sticks up at the banner with the band’s logo. The band started jamming and Phil Anselmo strolled out on a stage with a bottle of wine in hand and went right to the front of the stage to greet fans. The band then jammed into “Eyes of the South” and when the “goddamn!” was shouted by Anselmo the band exploded on stage. It was a good indication that the rest of the set was going to be very high energy and full of older favorite tunes.
Every song Down delivered had the venue going crazy. Guitarists Pepper Keenan and Bobby Landgraf along with bassist Patrick Bruders were jumping on the stage, headbanging and running around all while playing the churning riffs and southern influenced grooves everyone knows and loves. Anselmo was telling stories and jokes to the crowd between songs. During songs the band members were going up to the front to give the people on the barrier high fives and to shake hands. Anselmo said a few words of tribute to Dimebag Darrel before launching into “Lifer” and the crowd loudly joined in on the choruses. Newer tunes “Witchtripper” and “Conjure” were also thrown in before moving back to the older favorites. The encore consisted of “Stone the Crow” and “Bury Me In Smoke”. On the latter song Orange Goblin and some of the tour crew came on stage to take over instruments and jam out the end of the night.
Check out more photos here.