Big Wreck Bring their Energetic Performance to Vancouver
written by Rea Raven
The audience impatiently and enthusiastically waits for the clock to hit 11pm and for Canada’s own Big Wreck to take the stage. Lights dim, blue spotlights, and the five band members walk onto the stage with smiles as they head towards their instruments. Behind them, a large black banner with BIG WRECK is illuminated in the smoke clouds now visible. The energy level of the crowd rises and the band waves to the audience as the drum beat penetrates the Commodore Ballroom’s huge side speakers, until the rest of the instruments join the groove.
Straight into the music, Big Wreck bring us back to their earlier days with Man Overboard, My Life, and most well known radio hit, That Song, inviting the audience to come together for the performance. The guys are happy to be on stage, as evidenced by the flow of energy from band to audience. Frontman Ian Thornley takes a moment to thank Vancouver and say how awesome it is to be back at the Commodore, as the girl next to me screams ‘I love you Ian’.
Watching the band play was a joy – Big Wreck are known for their tight playing and virtuosic guitar solos, and you can sense they’re feeling the music as much as the crowd, playing with closed eyes and rocking out, or doing a little dance while getting into the vibe. A double neck guitar and even a banjo made an appearance at one point. The crowd too was right into the music; a loud but not rowdy crowd who know the words well enough to sing to nearly every song with enthusiasm.
Thornley at one point asks the audience what day of the week it is. The interaction of the band is nicely tempered by the tunes – not a lot to say but what they did share was with earnest intent. The show lasted about an hour and 30, with Big Wreck leaving the stage briefly before a powerful cover of Highway to Hell as their encore. This drastically picked up the energy level, and got everyone excited again, with the band performing a few more songs before ending the show. All in all as an enjoyable experience as seeing them at Edgefest in 1998 (four years after the band’s formation). I bet that the band will still be giving it their all for many years to come.
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Photos courtesy of Rea Raven -click for larger view