Canadian hard rockers Three Days Grace rolled into Montreal, Canada on November 20 in support of their newly released Explosions album. With 20 top ten hits on Billboard charts spread out over 20 years, the term grizzled veterans can be applied to them. Led by lead singer Brad Waist (and younger brother of lead guitarist Matt) who joined the band in 2011, Three Days Grace performed a show similar to many of today’s modern rock bands, and that is what it was, a very produced and choreographed show performed by aged veterans.
Opening with So Called Life and following up Animal I Have Become, Three Days Grace had the crowd going from the start. Home and Pain had the early vibes of Three Days Grace but that is when the process became too rehearsed and choreographed.
The show progressed between Painkiller and I Am The Weapon from The Explosions album, but a long keyboard setup and Brad Waist chants for Three Days Grace kept breaking up the fluidity. Brad Waist’s banter to the crowd lacked sincerity before World So Cold. Following songs such as Good Life and I Hate Everything About You were played. Encore songs were Never Too Late and Riot but at that point, the crowd had noticeably diminished.
Opening up for Three Days Grace was The Warning, a trio of sisters from Mexico. Playing songs off their newly released Errors album, they stole the show with their high energy tempo, rhythms, stage performance and enthusiasm. Things that the Three Days Grace show lacked. And their cover of Metallica’s Enter Sandman had a crowd sing-a-long going. Setting up the whole evening was The Standstills, a Canadian duo from Oshawa, Ontario, playing standard rock radio fare from their two albums Shockwave and Badlands.
Punk music has changed a lot over the decades since bands like the Sex Pistols and The Ramones. Two different generations of punk bands played on November 4, 2022 in Montreal, Canada. 1990’s California punk rock band The Offspring rolled into town with their Let the Bad Times Roll tour, originally postponed from earlier in the year due to the pandemic, with 2000’s hometown boys pop punk band Simple Plan opening up for them. And a great show it was.
One thing about the change in punk music is how much more it is streamlined for public consumption. The audience itself knew the entire catalogue of songs by both bands and the evening itself was a large sing-a-long of the songs for both bands.
The veterans and headliners of the show, The Offspring opened up their set with Keep them Separated and closed with Self Esteem. The majority of their songs came from their albums Americana and Ixnay on the Hombre with the only noteworthy addition to the setlist being Slim Pickens Does the Right Thing and Rides the Bomb to Hell being added. A cover of Blitzkrieg Bop was played. Noodles played several guitar riffs midway through the set to give Dexter’s voice a rest. The show was smooth as the dialogue between Dexter and Noodles – who isn’t as funny as he thinks sometimes – kept the set going in between guitar changes and tuning. But as Noodles commented, the sing-a-long factor of the crowd was tremendous and made the whole show fun.
But the real fun of the evening went to Simple Plan. As they are from Montreal and spoke in French, they had a huge pop and crowd response the whole night. Right from the start of their show with I’d Do Anything, the crowd was immediately behind them. But the highlight was special invite Marie Mai, a successful French pop star, to sing the female parts of Jet Lag which was the third song on their setlist. From giant beach balls from the rafters during Summer Paradise to a sing a long mix of All Star/Sk8er Boi and Mr. Brightside, Simple Plan’s show had a headline vibe. I’m Just a Kid also had the crowd going and they closed with Perfect, their ballad which had the loudest sing-a-long of their evening. Simple Plan played with a high level of energy the whole evening and did not miss a beat with no dead time. A very well-done show.