Dillinger Escape Plan with the Locust , Your Enemies' Friends and the Oath at the Opera House (735 Queen East), January 23. Tickets: $15. Attendance :750 Rating: NNN Rating: NNN
A packed house greeted superhero tech specialists the Dillinger Escape Plan , who headlined a stacked bill at the Opera House . The crowd ate up every note played during the band's encoreless set, which encompassed older songs from their Irony Is A Dead Scene EP, recorded when the band was fronted by Mike Patton, as well as new ones from their upcoming record, specifically designed around muscle-bound, relatively recent vocal acquisition Greg Puciato .
The band was accompanied by a strobe light show and distracting smoke machine. When coupled with the numerous teen skids and nu-metal dreadheads, it brought to mind an especially aggro Darkrave.
The sound mix was adequate, and the band's heaviness shone through. Even when they travelled into the realm of jazzy, atmospheric breakdowns, their nerdiness was accepted as heaviness.
Puciato got a good response and played off the crowd by clasping hands, tossing bottles of water to thirsty audience members and throwing himself into the pit.
The band members pushed themselves hard, and guitarist Ben Weinman injured his hand early on from overthrashing. That didn't keep him from playing the absurdly difficult parts nonetheless.
It was easy to avoid an encore. There were three other bands on the bill, and openers the Oath and the Locust had been detained out of town, delaying the start time.
The Oath began the night with high-pitched screaming vocals from former Charles Bronson singer Mark McCoy and a 15-minute burst of energetic spaz punk.
Then on came Your Enemies' Friends , who did nothing for me, even if it was nice to see a couple of ladies rocking onstage in the testosterone-laden Opera House. They seemed the oddest fit on the bill.
San Diego's Locust came out in white body stocking and face masks and proceeded to play their stop-start post-hardcore stuff well and with energy. Unless you have an amazing ear for music, you may think each tune is exactly the same burst of abrasive, super-fast noise. I guess that's part of why people like them. The music might strike some as odd, repetitive or even monotonous, but on a technical level it's airtight.