Black Mountain and Ladyhawk, Commodore Ballroom, April 6


Vancouver, who says The New Pornographers are the only good band to come out of the west coast? After attending last nights show Vancouver proved itself as not only an incubator of prime bud, but some kick ass rock and roll as well.

I arrived at the venue at 10:00 just in time to catch Ladyhawk’s opening song. I was disappointed when I found out that I had missed the first opener Nordic Nomadic from Toronto, featuring ex-Deadly Snakes (R.I.P.) member Chad Ross. I gave a few of their tracks a listen on their Myspace page and they seemed like an appropriate enough band to kick things off.

Now I must confess that I’m not familiar with Ladyhawk’s entire album so you must forgive me for the absence of track names, so if any of you fine folks happen to have the setlist, please do post it in the comments section. I made my way to the back of the floor and managed to find a nice comfy pole to lean against, this actually became a prime location to not only watch the entire show but also observe the sold out crowd. The first thing I noticed was the dancefloor was 75% full, which I found pleasantly surprising. It seems like the Ladyhawk has quite a following in Vancouver and the fans were well into the performance from the get go. They rocked the entire set and proved to be the perfect primer for Black Mountain not only by banging out some great tracks, but also because Amber Webber and Josh Wells of BM contribute vox, percussion and organ on their album Shots, although they unfortunately did not make an appearance during the ‘Hawk’s set.

11:00 pm, Black Mountain quietly saunters on to the stage to the roar of the sold out crowd. The lights dim, Amber takes center stage, tambourine and maraca in hand while Josh plucked a few strings. Amongst the haze of artificial fog and plenty of smoke a deep rumble and a haunting chant billowed through that reverberated through the entire venue. ‘Stormy High’ was our introduction to this adventure that would take us from the icy plateaus of Valhalla and into deep space. One can’t be deceived by listening to only BM’s popular tracks. This band isn’t just about rock and roll. I found myself grooving to more than a few tracks at the concert that I would have never expected to after listening to the album. ‘Evil Ways’ was a perfect example. It has a dash of funk to it. ‘Stay Free’ kept my foot slowly tapping – a perfect song to listen to while hanging out on the porch in the Bayou. The set came to a perfect ending when we heard the familiar head banger intro of ‘Don’t Run Our Hearts Around’. There were goat horns a plenty. The Gods of Rock, Funk and Hillbilly music were pleased.

Special thanks to Ken.


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Posted on by Vik in Concerts, Everything

About Vik

Father and pop culture geek, Vik is Panic Manual's designer and contributor

4 Responses to Black Mountain and Ladyhawk, Commodore Ballroom, April 6

  1. Wade

    No Satisfaction is a pretty good toe tapper. Nice review

  2. dale

    Josh and Amber were on the first record not Shots and Josh played keys on two of Layhawk’s songs during the set.

  3. Vik

    Thanks for the corrections Dale. I completely missed Josh on stage then!

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