January 28, 2016 Three Days Grace Start A Riot At Batschkapp Frankfurt, Germany 1-22-16
It has been a very busy last couple of years for Canadian Hard Rock outfit Three Days Grace. As if being in a Rock-n-Roll band is not enough of a whirlwind, the machine was put in spin cycle for Three Days Grace just a few months prior to the release of their 2012 Transit of Venus album when, in January of 2013, Lead Vocalist Adam Gontier departed from the band he fronted for over fifteen years. Quickly resolving the matter, they called on Bassist Brad Walst’s brother Matt of My Darkest Day fame to come in as the band’s vocalist. Not officially announced as Three Days Grace’s permanent, new vocalist immediately, it soon became evident that Matt was the right fit, knowing the band many years and having the experience as a frontman. Touring about and giving their fans a good dose of the new look of Three Days Grace through 2013- 2014, finally, on March 31st of 2015, the new album Human dropped. A pleasant surprise, the album is perhaps their heaviest and most aggressive music in some time. Spending time touring around North America in support of Human through most of last year, in 2016, the Human World Tour continues.
While Human is almost a year old now, a world tour takes time, and finally, this January, the tour visits the European continent. Beginning on January 13th in Manchester, England, just a little over a week later, on Friday, January 22nd, Three Days Grace stopped by in Frankfurt, Germany to play one of the country’s most iconic Rock venues, Batschkapp. Excited for Three Days Grace’s return to Germany, Batschkapp was sold out as fans arrived well before the doors opened at 6 PM, ready to have a good time.
As direct support for the evening, England’s Rock band We Are the Ocean took the stage at 7 PM sharp. Formed back in 2007, We Are the Ocean has seen a series of changes in their sound over the course of their career. Debuting with their self-titled EP in 2008, they possessed a much more Post Hardcore/Alternative Metal style. This style carried over into their 2010 debut full-length, Cutting Our Teeth, but by their third album, Maybe Today, Maybe Tomorrow, in 2013, Vocalist Dan Brown had departed and Liam Cromby had now taken over singing full-time. With the idea changes coming, the metamorphosis continued to greater extents with 2015 album Ark; a much more textured, Alternative Rock body of work.
With that in mind, the team of Vocalist/Guitarist Cromby, Lead Guitarist/Backing Vocalist Alfie Scully, Bassist/Backing Vocalist Jack Spence, and Drummer Tom Whittaker came out ready to warm up this Frankfurt crowd as they kicked off with heavy “Do It Together.” Sounding tight and energetic, they played on with other songs such as 2012 tracks “Young Heart” and “The Road.” With powerful guitars and emotional Rock-n-Roll vocals of Cromby, the band grabbed the attention of those who may have not been too familiar with their music. Receiving a warm reception, We Are the Ocean graciously responded with their cover of London Grammar’s “Hey Now.” A excellent rendition of the song, while Grammar is a tough act to follow, We Are the Ocean do so in grand fashion. Moving along in their set, they played on with a mix of songs from their new album, including “Ark” and “Holy Fire.” During their forty minute set, We Are The Ocean convinced the audience with their British charm and catchy music. Fans of bands like Editors, Muse, and Civil Twilight need to catch this band out, immediately.
Following a set change, at about 8.30 PM Three Days Grace was ready to take over Batschkapp. Approaching the stage with the lineup of Neil Sanderson (drums), Barry Stock (guitar), touring member Dani Rosenoer (keyboards/backing vocals), along with Brad (bass) and Matt (vocals), this sold out Frankfurt crowd was buzzing with anticipation. With the lights down, everyone waited for the explosive beginning, upping the tension as Rage Against the Machine’s “Killing in the Name” played over the PA.
Then, just like that, the band opened with single “I Am Machine” as each band member came on stage after each other during the intro, and then the guys began rocking. As the audience sang along and danced, the band enjoyed the response of playing off the good vibes, pointing at fans, or posing for the videos and pictures. A grand opening, they wasted no time to go into old school Three Days Grace as they played “Just Like You” off their 2003 self titled debut album. Even while the track is over a decade old now, fans sang along with just as much enthusiasm, shouting the lyrics out loud. Judging by the looks on each band member’s face, Frankfurt was impressing them quite a bit. Matt even demanded a circle pit, and he got it.
The fans highly appreciated each song by singing and moving along as they played other tracks like “Pain” and “Break.” Starting circle pits and screaming their hearts out for the louder songs, the band enticed everyone to scream even louder. Going into other favorites like “Home” and “Human Race,” the band had complete control of the room with the energy flowing through, on top of their song selection. In fact, they challenged the audience to see who can get louder, the men or women. There were quite some women in the audience, but the men shouted just as loud. As a result, the battle stayed undecided, even though Sanderson voted for the women and received quite some extra cheering from the female part of the audience.
Entertained and feeling included all night long, the fans were very energetic as the set moved along. With a cool instrumental interlude and drum solo by Sanderson midway through, “Painkiller” and “The Good Life” followed shortly thereafter. Amidst the two tracks, they also offered the cut “Fallen Angel,” which had everyone waving their hands side to side. Matt, inspired by the adrenaline pumping, kept enticing the audience to dance and rage more in the circle pits to get some motion into the masses. Gladly following these instructions, moving around and never standing still for a moment, Three Days Grace pumped out other killer tunes like “I Hate Everything About You” and “Animal I’ve Become.”
After a little over ninety minutes, the show seemed all but over, although, the audience demanded more. Shouting “One More Song” and “Three Days Grace,” the band returned once more to a roar of cheers. Kicking off the encore with “High Road,” the very last song they played was the loud and rough “Riot.” At this point, everyone in the venue used their last bits of voice to shout along to the lyrics for one last time. After the last note ended, the band bowed for the fans, thanking them for an amazing night, and promised to be back. At around 10 pm, the show was over as everyone left the venue with a smile on their face and a story to tell.
While the Human World Tour wrapped up in Poland on January 26th, hopes are Three Days Grace keep to their promise and return to the European region sooner rather than later. Their set was a good mix of songs from all five of their albums, and their ability to keep the emotional energy high was second to none. Now, Three Days Grace bring the Human World Tour on to rocking Russia right through February 14th.