RIOT FEST REVIEW: BRING ME THE HORIZON @ Downsview Park, September 610 September 2014 / by Luke Williams (author)
The first thing I noticed at Bring Me The Horizon’s set at Riot Fest was is that it attracted a very diverse audience. From the couple trying to smoke and hide a joint from the two security guards literally 10 feet away, to the very excited 14 year-old girl decked out in BMTH gear, to the stoic father of another 14 year-old who had clearly dragged him along. In short, the crowd was a mish mash of people.
The set started with the familiar, echoey background vocals from their single “Shadow Moses” off of the band’s most recent album, Sempiternal. This leads me to my biggest problem with Bring Me The Horizon’s set. I am generally alright with bands playing one of their albums in full; but, in my opinion, it had better be a classic album. Something seminal, something that has been out for at least a decade. As it turned out, every song of the band’s set was off of Sempiternal except for their old classic, “Chelsea Smile.” This album has been out for just over a year; which hardly warrants playing the album in its entirety.
The other negative of this show was lead singer Oliver Syke’s over-the-top interest in starting mosh pits. Surprisingly, the crowd didn’t seem interested in starting pits; even as the show progressed. Still, Oliver continued to ask for pits - to the point where he resorted to integrating his wishes into his lyrics; a tactic that smacked of desperation.
If there was a positive of the show, it is that both Oliver’s singing and screaming have vastly improved over the years. There was a time when seeing a Bring Me The Horizon show meant that you were in for a session of improper screams and clean vocals that were just too quiet to hear at all. So rest assured that there is now increased sound quality in a Bring Me the Horizon show… though perhaps less variety in tracks than you may be expecting. Oh - and by the time Sempiternal turns 10, the celebration show should be great.