OCTOBER 31st 2016

Review by Lana Muirhead
Photos by Peter Ruttan
Gallery: http://www.metaltitans.com/concertpics/buckcherry-the-wild/

What better way to spend your Halloween than to dress up and rock out to some live music?  Let’s be honest: there isn’t one.  The Venue on October 31st was as packed for local act The Wild! as it was for the headliner, Buckcherry.

Most were out in their All Saints’ Eve best and drinks flowed freely. The night jumpstarted with The Wild!, who in their ‘bad boy’ attire and with their debaucherous, ways led the charge into the darkness. Lead vocalist and guitarist Dylan Villain, bassist Boozus, guitarist The Kid, and drummer Reese Lightning embody all that is rock’n’roll, blues, and punk/psychobilly. From speedy, yet soulful to melodic yet gritty, The Wild! laid the soundtrack to a party unparalleled. They have a new record coming out in early 2017 and they played from this as well from their well-established backlist.

Plowing through “Slow Burn”, “Rattlesnake Shake”, “What About You?”, “Six Hundred Sixty Six”, “Ready To Roll”, and “Party Til You’re Dead”, to name a few, The Wild! delivered vocals reminiscent of Steven Tyler and Brian Johnson, grit known as far back as Muddy Waters, and spirit only seen in those who love what they do and do it well.  And the set came complete with a beer funneling contest between Boozus and The Kid. One guess who won that one.

Buckcherry came out with a hard act to follow.  They made the best attempt they could, breaking on stage with “Sunshine”, a rather soft opener to say the least.  But Josh Todd (lead vocals), Keith Nelson (lead guitar/rhythm guitar), Stevie D. (lead guitar/rhythm guitar), Xavier Muriel (drums/percussion), and Kelly LeMieux (bass) went balls to the wall honoring the just-over-ten year anniversary of “15”.  They played the entire album, albeit in a jumbled order.  For good measure “Gluttony” and “Lit-Up” were tossed in and an encore of “Say Fuck It” and “Too Drunk” closed the set.

“Crazy Bitch”, a typical crowd favourite, was 2/3 into the set and was split with mini solos from Nelson, D., and LeMieux.  They also had a little run with a mix of covers to placate the mostly enthusiastic crowd. I feel like an ass for saying I was not super excited by the set, and likely had the face of a girl who looked like she smelled a dirty wet fart for most of it.  Maybe I just balked at the casual cocaine conversation or the very undefineable state of lead Todd (was he drunk, was he high, is this his typical demeanor…?). Despite my sour approach to the night, everyone on stage did sound great and most of the crowd left seemed to be enjoying themselves (or were so drunk they were invested regardless).

I like to say I can split the good from the bad and the ugly, and though I was impressed by The Wild!, and not so much by Buckcherry, I tend to think Buckcherry has put on better shows. The Wild! carried the night for me, but let’s just hope that means Buckcherry can blow my skirt up sometime in the near future; from the stage, of course.