Crowbar / Battlecross / Lord Dying The Pawn Shop, Edmonton AB, June 13

Crowbar / Battlecross / Lord Dying The Pawn Shop, Edmonton AB, June 13
Photo: Dana Zuk

On a dreary Saturday night (June 13) in Edmonton, Crowbar were in town for the first time on their "Summer of Doom" tour, accompanied by Portland doom metal extraordinaires Lord Dying and Detroit thrash metal masters, Battlecross.

Kicking off the night, Lord Dying were loud and muddy, displaying an overwhelming amount of talent and engaging the crowd with occasional solos that pierced the veil of static in the monitors. Despite the sludgy sound, Lord Dying kept spirits high with a mix of their spellbinding music and friendly crowd banter, encouraging fans to get closer to the stage. Despite this being their first show in Edmonton, they'd won the crowd over by the end of their set, as evinced by the many bobbing heads and fists in the air throughout the Pawn Shop.

Next, show-stealers of the night Battlecross stormed the stage to lay down a gritty and thrash-y ten song set. Opening up strong with their hit "Push, Pull, Destroy," Battlecross had the house pumping with adrenaline, making the younger people in the crowd stampede around in an aggressive mosh pit. The band hammered through other classics like "Force Fed Lies" and "Beast" before treating the crowd to a brand new track, to be included on their forthcoming album, Rise to Power. It was a high point among many in Battlecross's performance, which made every day of the two year wait since they last performed in Edmonton well worth it.

Last, Crowbar hit the stage with force to play a 14-song set. As fans battled their wait to the front, frontman and guitarist Kirk Windstein greeted Edmonton by saying, "Good news is, we're from New Orleans... Bad news is, we're gonna kick your ass!" With cheeky smiles, the band immediately slammed into "Burn Your World," sending their audience into a frenzy of headbanging and fist-pumping. Over the rolling rumbles of Jeff Golden's bass lines and Tommy Buckley's kick drums, Windstein's crunchy and gritty voice soared as guitarist Matt Brunson began to pluck his strings to the familiar opening melody of Led Zeppelin's "No Quarter," as they dished out the heaviest cover that the Zep classic has ever seen. 

Closing off their set in style, Crowbar took the audience on a trip down memory lane to their self-titled album of 1993, playing the fan favourite track "High Rate Extinction." With smiles and a look of gratitude on their faces, Crowbar left the stage in high spirits as fans cheered and chanted loudly for more.