11 October 2018

Three Days Grace @ The O2 Institute Birmingham

If you’re reading this then you’re not doubt interested in what I have to say about Three Days Grace and Bad Wolves.

You’re in luck because that’s exactly what I’m going to do!

Starting the night off was the band Bad Wolves, well most of Bad Wolves. Tommy Vext, the lead vocalist was absent from the line up as he was hospitalised.

“…imagine my disappointment when a few days ago I began feeling ill to the point I knew something was wrong enough that I had to seek medical treatment – and to accept the doctors’ advice that I not play the show in Birmingham.”

However, vocalists from the bands As Lions and Bang Bang Romeo were here to help. Austin, from As Lions, was up first and he had plenty of energy as he jumped and ran about on stage. He really appeared to be enjoying his time on stage and his vocal range was impressive, as an almighty low growl turned into a high fry scream at the end of the second song whilst behind him centre stage the guitarists were leaning into each other. Truly looked rock and roll.

Once Austin’s time was up Stars, from Bang Bang Romeo, was next. Stars only sang the final two songs of the set but they were some of the bigger tracks from the band, “Hear Me Now” and the crowd favourite and the one that really perpetuated Bad Wolves into the limelight “Zombie”. Compared to Austin, Stars tended to stay planted in the same spot and stomping her feet and enticed the crowd to sing along to “Zombie” a little more than I’d have personally liked. However, the crowd lit up the venue and hearing such a cover live was electric and was a great, if not obvious, way to end the set.



After a 30 minute layover Three Days Grace entered the stage with the crowd readily pumped from hearing “Livin’ on a Prayer” pre-set. “The Mountain” opened up the set, the lead single from the latest album, however it was apparent that Barry wasn’t happy with something as not only did he signal to the audio tech to turn his guitar up he also left for a few moments during the second song.

The first time the crowd really got involved with the music was when “The Good Life” and with “Infra-Red” was played resulting in jumping, moshing and other such crowd foolery. Matt then went into a bit of an anecdote to introduce the next song “We were real bored and heard this the radio so we decided to go in to the studio and record  it” which led nicely in to their cover “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore” and ending with a nice classic “Oggy Oggy Oggy, Oi Oi Oi” chant.



Overall the stage was well lit which was nice as it meant we could clearly see the band for a change, however, it did seem a bit weird as the band looked awfully exposed even if they didn’t seem to mind it. It definitely did not stop Matt from jumping off the drum rigging and belting out high screams.

About two thirds into the set the mood and tempo changed as the electric guitars and drums were swapped out for a keyboard and an acoustic guitar. “Love Me or Leave Me” was one of the key tracks that lead this moment of rest and helped calm the atmosphere but it wasn’t long before the energy was back and Neil chugged the rest of his beer.

One thing that did seem out of the ordinary was the way in which Matt incited the crowd to chant the band’s name. No other band that I’ve seen live has ever done that as usually the crowd chants for the band during the obligatory “goodnight but here’s an encore” part of the show.

Before that obligatory encore performance Matt got some simple crowd participation in the form of splitting the room into two halves. One which chanted “I” and the other which chanted “Hate” before it crescendoed into the opening of “I Hate Everything About You”, arguably the bands biggest song. A interesting treat was how during the song “Animal I Have Become was intercut with a tuned down version of “Seven Nation Army” just before the band eventually did leave the stage. The night ended with the final performances of the encore which featured the tracks “The Abyss” and “Riot”.

A final note and maybe “Jacks Tip of The Day” would be: If you’re going to clap along to a song please make sure you know how to keep a simple beat”. As the crowd really let themselves down as they couldn’t keep a consistent beat which was quite frankly embarrassing.

The gig was a good one to attended if you’re a fan of both Three Days Grace and Bad Wolves, hence: