Black Wizard Malkin Bowl, Vancouver BC, June 7
Published Jun 08, 2015Vancouver's Black Wizard have experienced their fair share of turmoil in their years together, between their brief hiatus in 2011 after guitarist Johnny de Courcy quit the band, switching bassists in 2013, and swapping replacement lead guitarist Kenneth Cook (Anciients) for Danny Stokes after their last European tour. Yet, they showed up to Levitation Fest with a survivor attitude. Guitarist and lead vocalist Adam Grant beckoned the crowd closer as soon as they hit the stage, noting that everyone had partied quite hard yesterday, and they wanted to sweat it out together with the crowd.
You could hear some of that hangover on Grant's vocals, tearing at the seams when he hit his top register, but the band was tight in their exploration of '70s-indebted metal and stoner doom riffs. Though much of their set was pulled from their upcoming record New Waste, they already have them down pat. They fully committed to the show, with frontman Grant's wild vocal histrionics, drummer Eugene Parkomenko's pounding pulses, Evan Joel's bone-rattling bass, and the nimble soloing and general guitar wizardry of Stokes.
They looked the part too, with "The Wiz" written in electrical tape on a brown suitcase in front of Parkomenko's kit, Grant's shirt off to reveal a revolver tattoo tucked into his belt, all four with matted locks flowing down to their chests, flipping their manes back sporadically as they rocked. Dethklok would definitely give them the metal seal of approval.