Volbeat: 18 June 2012 - Toronto

Dave MacIntyre

In a little under two years, Volbeat have managed to headline bigger venues and grow their fan-base too.

City: Toronto, ON
Venue: Kool Haus
Date: 2012-06-18

For the fifth time in a little under two years, the Danish rockabilly-metal outfit, better known as Volbeat, stopped by Toronto, and in this short time, the band have managed to headline bigger venues and grow their fan-base too. Volbeat’s Monday June 18th performance was testament to this accomplishment, playing their largest headlining show at Kool Haus, and the first stop of their “Route 666” North American tour.

Volbeat stormed the stage red-hot launching into “A Warrior’s Call” followed quickly by “Guitar, Gangsters and Cadillac Blood”. If the number of return visits to Toronto weren’t convincing enough, the smile on front-man Michael Poulsen’s face, made it perfectly clear he enjoys playing here. Seeing Hank Shermann on lead guitar was also a welcome sight as I recall his performance as the fill-in for former guitarist Thomas Bredahl during Gigantour was incredible. Shermann’s fret work adds a fresh twist on Volbeat’s earlier songs, giving them new life and uniqueness. The always animated Anders Kjølholm was solid on bass and Jon Larsen tight on drums.

Volbeat performed a great selection of songs from their catalogue that included fan-favourites such as “Sad Man’s Tongue”, “Mary Ann’s Place”, “Fallen” and “Radio Girl”, but the personal highlight of the evening was the 2-minute snippet of “Sweet Unicorns” (introduced by Poulsen as “Mama can I have a shotgun? No you can have a sweet unicorn”) a hard, thrashy, and instantly infectious metal riff that hinted at great things to come from the new album. The song led into “The Mirror & The Ripper” before the main set ended.

After a brief pause, Volbeat returned to the stage for the encore. In a very gracious gesture, Poulsen brought three kids garbed in Volbeat shirts, on to the stage. Introducing them as “the new generation”, he had them sit on the edge of the drum kit to rock out with him and the band. Volbeat finished off the night with “The Human Instrument”, “I Only Wanna Be With You”, “Pool Of Booze, Booze, Booza” and arguably their best known song, “Still Counting” before ripping into the signature Slayer opening of “Raining Blood” to end the show.

Set List:

A Warrior's Call

Guitar Gangsters & Cadillac Blood

Another Day, Another Way

Sad Man's Tongue

A Moment Forever / Hallelujah Goat

Mary Ann's Place

Who They Are


Caroline Leaving

Heaven Nor Hell

16 Dollars

River Queen

Radio Girl

Sweet Unicorns

The Mirror & The Ripper


The Human Instrument

I Only Wanna Be With You

Pool of Booze, Booze, Booza

Still Counting

Visit PopMatters' Facebook page to see a larger gallery of high res images!

Cover down, pray through: Bob Dylan's underrated, misunderstood "gospel years" are meticulously examined in this welcome new installment of his Bootleg series.

"How long can I listen to the lies of prejudice?
How long can I stay drunk on fear out in the wilderness?"
-- Bob Dylan, "When He Returns," 1979

Bob Dylan's career has been full of unpredictable left turns that have left fans confused, enthralled, enraged – sometimes all at once. At the 1965 Newport Folk Festival – accompanied by a pickup band featuring Mike Bloomfield and Al Kooper – he performed his first electric set, upsetting his folk base. His 1970 album Self Portrait is full of jazzy crooning and head-scratching covers. In 1978, his self-directed, four-hour film Renaldo and Clara was released, combining concert footage with surreal, often tedious dramatic scenes. Dylan seemed to thrive on testing the patience of his fans.

Keep reading... Show less

Inane Political Discourse, or, Alan Partridge's Parody Politics

Publicity photo of Steve Coogan courtesy of Sky Consumer Comms

That the political class now finds itself relegated to accidental Alan Partridge territory along the with rest of the twits and twats that comprise English popular culture is meaningful, to say the least.

"I evolve, I don't…revolve."
-- Alan Partridge

Alan Partridge began as a gleeful media parody in the early '90s but thanks to Brexit he has evolved into a political one. In print and online, the hopelessly awkward radio DJ from Norwich, England, is used as an emblem for incompetent leadership and code word for inane political discourse.

Keep reading... Show less

The show is called Crazy Ex-Girlfriend largely because it spends time dismantling the structure that finds it easier to write women off as "crazy" than to offer them help or understanding.

In the latest episode of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, the CW networks' highly acclaimed musical drama, the shows protagonist, Rebecca Bunch (Rachel Bloom), is at an all time low. Within the course of five episodes she has been left at the altar, cruelly lashed out at her friends, abandoned a promising new relationship, walked out of her job, had her murky mental health history exposed, slept with her ex boyfriend's ill father, and been forced to retreat to her notoriously prickly mother's (Tovah Feldshuh) uncaring guardianship. It's to the show's credit that none of this feels remotely ridiculous or emotionally manipulative.

Keep reading... Show less

Winner of the 2017 Ameripolitan Music Award for Best Rockabilly Female stakes her claim with her band on accomplished new set.

Lara Hope & The Ark-Tones

Love You To Life

Label: Self-released
Release Date: 2017-08-11

Lara Hope and her band of roots rockin' country and rockabilly rabble rousers in the Ark-Tones have been the not so best kept secret of the Hudson Valley, New York music scene for awhile now.

Keep reading... Show less

To be a migrant worker in America is to relearn the basic skills of living. Imagine doing that in your 60s and 70s, when you thought you'd be retired.

Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century

Publisher: W. W. Norton
Author: Jessica Bruder
Publication date: 2017-09

There's been much hand-wringing over the state of the American economy in recent years. After the 2008 financial crisis upended middle-class families, we now live with regular media reports of recovery and growth -- as well as rising inequality and decreased social mobility. We ponder what kind of future we're creating for our children, while generally failing to consider who has already fallen between the gaps.

Keep reading... Show less
Pop Ten
Mixed Media
PM Picks

© 1999-2017 All rights reserved.
Popmatters is wholly independently owned and operated.