SEPTEMBER 22nd 2015
Review by Anka Anpostu
Photos by Peter Ruttan


This was one of the most anticipated shows of the fall for me: Revocation headlining, back in Vancouver after only a few months, and bringing with them some remarkable support bands like Black Fast, Archspire, and Cannabis Corpse. Add to that one of the best local acts Expain and a Tuesday night at the Red Room just gets more interesting.

Expain kicked things off shortly after 7:30 and did a proper warm up, thankfully in front of more than a bunch of people, which is great considering the time and the other events happening in town the same night. Having just returned from a lengthy Canadian tour, the guys were still in touring mood and even more boisterous than ever. Their trademark thrash, equally jolly and heavy, playfully intricate and melodic is just never boring and very headbangable.

Speaking of headbanging… Black Fast was a surprise for me and for many others alike, a band only a few have heard of, but many have talked about after the show. It was one of those moments when heads were turning towards the stage and a weird, mindful stillness took over the crowd for a few minutes until everyone eventually reacted to the riffy slaughter. This was good, punchy thrash-death with just the right dose of heavy hooks to get the crowd super pumped.

The night’s menu included a generous portion of shreddy tech as well, from Vancouver’s own Archspire – who were part of this amazing tour package. Sincerely I miss Archspire with live bass, but on the other hand I have gotten used to seeing them as a 4-pack and it’s as crushing as ever. I couldn’t tell if they felt some sort of hometown advantage, every time I see them they put on a flawless performance with their jaw-dropping guitar wizardry and too-fast-for-moshing, technical drumming.

Cannabis Corpse totally broke the tech-y seriousness with a reprise of death metal satire and pot-inspired tracks. Their brutal death metal tone contrasts the lyrical theme and the chatter between songs. “This next one is about pot!” - oh, no sh*t!  Funny but appropriately brutal, they rapidly got the crowd moshing and pumping their fists HIGH in the air.

Revo, Revo, Revo! After seeing them so often lately, and claiming that I just can’t get enough of them (see my last review from Heavy Montreal), you can imagine my stoke levels were higher than some people in the room. And I am happy to have seen so many other Revocation fanatics in there - at the time the band took the stage, the place was pretty packed for a Tuesday night in Vancouver. For some people it was fresh news that the band’s connection to Vancouver is now even stronger, having added drummer Ash Pearson (3 Inches of Blood) to their lineup just a few months ago. And this was a very inspired move I might add. It was great to hear some killer tracks off their new album ‘Deathless’ as well as ‘Chaos of Forms’,’ Revocation’ and even the awesome instrumental ‘Alliance and Tyranny’ from their first release. I have seen everything from enthusiastic air guitars to air drumming in the crowd, and surely my spot right in front gave me a whole new perspective on their playing.  Great musicianship, and elaborate but catchy metal tunes with the best from thrash, death and prog brought together in a perfect symbiosis.

Every show they put on seems better and better and consequently damn shorter. After all, Tuesday night didn’t properly quench my addictive need for another Revocation show, but it only made it worse. Maybe it’s because of the fact that I know I won’t be seeing them for a while now, or maybe it’s just that they are THAT good.