Today Is The Day / Vilipend Blue Moon, Toronto ON November 8

Today was not their day. Every band have it: the show where nothing goes right and it becomes difficult to plug on when all odds are against you. Generally speaking, these frustrations tend to be of a technical nature — those glitches beyond anyone’s control.

Such was the case with Nashville’s experimental noise metallers Today Is The Day on this occasion. Despite being renowned for pushing the boundaries of aggressive music, TITD relied far too greatly on mixed media: a computer, video screen backdrop and sound samples. Things were already growing tiresome during the almost-ten-minute opening segment of clips and two-minute shorts between songs.

They had barely made it through three tunes in the first 20 minutes, and a portion of that was spent struggling to address a malfunction instead of forging ahead. When foregoing the sensory overload though, the trio were spot-on, loud, abrasive and commanding, nailing a set heavy on latest effort Axis Of Eden.

If they had dropped the art school shenanigans and just delivered their vicious, uncompromising metal, they’d have been stellar instead of passable, and would have lived up to the energy level set by openers Vilipend. Letting the music speak for itself, but enhancing the atmosphere with two flood lights casting a foreboding shadow from behind, the Toronto-based quartet exploded with dark, brooding and menacing metal uniting the ferocity of Black Flag (the embittered, desperate screams of "What I See” kept coming to mind) with the technicality and ravenous attack of Converge.

Factor in that blood was shed as bodies collided with instruments and the evening seemed on the edge of greatness... was it not for TITD’s digital dependency putting a severe damper on things.