"Am I evil?"
That's the question everyone had to ask themselves as metal legends Diamond Head hit the stage in Calgary during their first ever Canadian tour. The faithful packed the Distortion Live Music Venue on a Monday night to see one of the legends at the forefront of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal in the early 1980s. The crowd gave the metal gods the hero's welcome they deserved... and bathed in Hell's fiery glow, the lads gave back in spades, playing anthems from their seminal first album, Lightning To The Nations (1980), to 1987’s infamous Am I Evil?, and all the way through to their newest self-titled release from 2016.
The permanent grin on founding band member and guitarist Brian Tatler’s face was a pleasure to behold, and made it clear that Diamond Head were touring for the genuine love of live performance. Tatler’s virtuoso musicianship, the tight rhythm section formed by longtime drummer Karl Wilcox and newcomer bassist Dean Ashton, and vocalist Rasmus Bom Andersen’s soaring voice showed a band at the top of their game, something that can’t always be said for acts nearing their fourth decade in existence (even with younger blood filling the ranks).
A trio of local bands warmed the stage for Diamond Head. First up were Hrom, who served up a plate of fast, fist pumping metal à la classic Priest, Helloween and Warning-era Queensrÿche, with vocalist Jan Loncik giving Halford, Kiske and Tate a serious run for their money in the high octave department.
Next up, In/Vertigo cranked the attitude to 11 and delivered melodic, blues-tinged rock set with monster hooks and guitar solos. Hips they were a-swayin’.
Third on the bill, Riot City. Picture, if you will, a sound kind of like “aMegadeth rapes Mötley Crüe while Iron Maiden tries to intervene” (their own words). I’m pretty sure I heard some Overkill mixed in there, too. By the time Riot City were done, the stage had indeed become hellishly warm for the headliners. Mission
Cale Savvy - Lead/Rhythm Guitar/ Lead Vocals
Roldan Reimer - Lead/Rhythm Guitar/ Backing Vocals
Dustin Smith - Bass/ Backing Vocals
Chad Vallier - Drums/Backing Vocals
Written and photographed by Xavier Cattarinich
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@ Distortion Live Music Venue
Calgary, AB Canada
August 28, 2017
Voxx Promos in alliance with The Paramour Group, & Apocalypse-Metal
Brian Tatler - Guitars
Rasmus Bom Andersen - Vocals
Karl Wilcox - Drums
Dean Ashton - Bass
Abbz - Guitars
Label: MCA Records, Cargo Records, Dissonance Productions
Jan Loncik - Vocals
Matt Ries - Guitars
Alex Langill - Guitars
Label: Steel Legacy Records / Independent
Reed - Vocals
Duncan Mccartney - Bass guitar
Keaton Byfield - Drums
Shaddy Elsaghir - Guitar