Show Review: Futures Past, Rumsfield,& TN

At 7:30, heavy guitars and furious drumming could be heard from the corner of Queen and Bathurst outside The Kathedral. Inside, the intense sound is hard but surprisingly melodic, a welcome invitation to bang your head until the pain of a busy day subsides.

Transient Noise, a band that has opened for esteemed acts such as Finger Eleven, Theory of a Deadman and Three Days Grace, is unafraid to bare heart and soul to Toronto, as singer Arron Reed belts out strong melodies while plunking away at his keyboard or guitar. Yes, he's really that multi-talented! Some of their songs are slow and heartfelt, others loud and raw. They're surely the "softest" band of the evening, concentrating more on depth and textures than metal groove and emotional outburst, but nonetheless satisfy the need for concinnity. They invite fans to come check them out at Club 279 March 4th.

Next up, five year veterans Rumsfield irrefutably rock the roof off. Hunkered down over their guitars, Mike Lefort and Eric Turner crank out thick, rhythmic guitar riffs that definitely take the spotlight, but do not overshadow the intensity of singer Dean Scott's world. One moment Dean's looking you deeply in the eyes, the next minute he's lost in a deep-seeded growl errupting into a scream, and later still he's head-banging with the groove of the guitars. Drummer Luke, looking like a true rockstar donning his favourite black mesh shirt, keeps a fast-paced, busy beat to maintain momentum. Rumsfield plays hits off their latest album Terrible Times such as "Escape", "Soapscum" and crowd favourite "Blister", which now finds a happy home on MTV and Much Music. Their stage presence inspires mosh pit action at shows both big and small and their sound never gets stale.

Futures Past takes the stage next. Immediately, it's obvious their musical ability far surpasses their remarkably just-out-of-highschool age. Their onstage antics range from coordinated jumps to running offstage to bond with eager fans. "Everybody jump up!" lead singer and true showman Ricky Gupta shouts. He's feeling sick and slightly subpar today but that doesn't stop him from issuing out the most authentic screams and giving it his all. Thank God for throat-coating cranberry juice, eh Ricky? Lead guitarist Jason Hoeg plays an impressive range of riffs, 80's-metal leads and catchy rhythms, all the while managing to swing his guitar around his body without wacking anyone else in the eye or missing a beat! As a vocalist, he carries a range The Used would be proud of - a pleasant soft voice but also a gutteral screaming voice. With heads doused in thick braids, Rhythm Guitarist Arda Yilgoren attracted his own fanclub of screaming young blondes who clamored to the stage, drooling over his every metal-laced strum. Bassist Garth Julien blends in harmoniously with this multi-cultural band, smiling and rocking his heart out, unafraid to find his place centre-stage. Drummer Nathan Wallace rips his shirt off again as he pounds furiously, adding a new energy to the band's drive. They play older favourites like "Silent Scream" and "Defiance", while also testing out brand new tracks that will appear on their upcoming album. As a band that thrives off live performances and fan base creation, they've neglected studio time but are currently catching up at a rapid pace. They invite everyone back to The Vatikan March 12th.

It's a satisfying evening with some of Toronto's best hard rockers. One can't help but feel blessed to live in a city where such bona fide energy and emotion can be combined and experienced... all for $5.


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