The Shaw Conference Centre was rocked by Halestorm and Stone Sour’s co-headline tour on January 31. I can honestly say it was the best concert I have seen in 2018. It was also the first concert I’ve seen this year. They were joined by the Dead Deads to bring blasting modern rock to a half sold-out crowd.
Shaw has never had the best sound quality. The design of the building’s hall causes tons of echo leaving much to be desired if you are not standing in the first half of the hall directly in front of the stage. If you are at the back of the hall grabbing drinks, good luck hearing the music, it’s just noise. Despite that, the sound in the front of the stage was fantastic (we were in front of the sound booth). The sound techs for In This Moment fixed the sound issues by placing two small speakers in the middle of the hall hanging from the ceiling. More concerts need to realize that all it takes to fix the echo is two speakers.
The Dead Deads
The opener was mediocre at best. They sounded like every other rock band that came out in the last two years. There was little that stood out about them and their last song was all over the place; they couldn’t decide what it was supposed to sound like. They have potential to become much better in the future; but right now they are lacking.
I still maintain that Halestorm is one of the best acts in modern rock. They came out on stage full of energy. They always play their best no matter the situation. Lzzy always pushes her voice to limit for every show. Her voice was starting to suffer by the end of the show, but it was not detrimental to the concert in any way. Arejay looked a little bored on the older songs, but when he was free to do his thing his energy was through the roof. Not to mention the flair he was adding into his drumming throughout the set.
Everyone who enjoys rock needs to see this band at least once.
Stone Sour came out on stage with all guns blazing. Almost quite literally. Okay, it was confetti cannons. Their level of energy is infectious and even if you aren’t fan of them, you would still have a good time. Finally, the crowd seemed to have woken up.
The crowd throughout the night was lacking in energy, but not in loudness. Its likely because the crowd was older. There was little jumping but plenty of cheering for Halestorm and Stone Sour. It wasn’t until Stone Sour came out with confetti canons and fireworks movement started in the crowd.
Stone Sour had a replacement rhythm guitarist as Josh Rand checked himself into a treatment centre. The band even played a song in tribute to Rand. Hopefully, his recovery goes well. The replacement guitarist was not lacking in skill or equipment. He was constantly switching guitars (some beautifully paint Ibanez Jems included!).
This is not a band that should be missed. Even if you don’t care for their music that much. Their energy is infectious and are just a fun band to watch.