Galaxie Stage, Montreal QC, August 11

There wasn't much doom at Heavy MTL, so Pallbearer would have stood out simply through song length and stylistic divergence, even if they hadn't delivered a ground-shaking set (to way too few people). Their minimal crowd banter seemed endearingly uncontrived, even if the pauses between songs were an awkward touch too long. And for a band whose pace moves so heavily and slowly (by a half hour in they had finished just three tracks), their songs and performance emit shockwaves of vitality. The tortured wails of vocalist/guitarist Brett Campbell were spot on for all but a short break in "Foreigner," and he and fellow guitarist Devin Holt traded a couple of powerful solos. But Joseph D. Rowland, at centre stage, did the most rocking out, to the point of causing a minor cord mishap in the final song and throwing down his bass as the show ended, chasing the doom with a touch of amusing melodrama as Pallbearer's forty minutes wrapped up disappointingly soon.
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