Roadrunner Records - Slipknot's hard-hitting, aggressive metal anthems are getting…
- Posted on Aug 6th 2012 11:00AM by Melody Lau
The afternoon saw a chunk of sunshine come through just in time for Passion Pit's set -- their third show since cancelling a number of dates due to lead singer Michael Angelakos' mental health. The band appeared to be in good spirits, reviving the crowd's enthusiasm with its synth-laden electro-pop. Tunes from Passion Pit's latest album, Gossamer, went over really well with audiences, and they featured more relaxed vocals from Angelakos, who looked tortured trying to hit his signature falsetto on older tracks like their hit single "Sleepyhead."
On the other end of the festival grounds, electro-dance outfit Austra proved that their dark and morose tracks are just as captivating in broad daylight as they are in bars and clubs. The Toronto band almost has their set down to a science. From the synchronized dance moves by back-up singers Sari and Romy Lightman to leader Katie Stelmanis' theatrical demeanor as she belts out each operatic note, their show might be a bit by-the-numbers if you've seen them more than once, but they still never fail to impress each time. Austra performed one new song, which is still very much in line with their minimalistic structure of drum machines and synths, but the beat on this untitled track proved to be a bit more upbeat and lighter than most of their repertoire.
Half a song into the Shins' set, the rain returned and lightning flashed in the sky, but that didn't stop James Mercer and co. from marching on with their set, which was filled with classic hits as well as cuts from their latest album, Port of Morrows. "Are you doing okay? I'm just as wet as you are," Mercer told the audience, showing some solidarity with the masses. City and Colour followed, playing through the rain for the entire hour, to the delights of many fans. Both City and Colour and the Shins provided more laidback sets that were by no means festival rockers, but with their acoustic guitar-driven ballads and saccharine indie-pop melodies, respectively, they were welcome breathers.
Toronto four-piece Metric are festival veterans, having gradually climbed the ranks in the circuit from mid-afternoon act to second-to-last headliner on one of the main stages at Osheaga. The band didn't disappoint as lead singer Emily Haines' crazed looks and wildly infectious stage persona is immediately captivating. Even from the back of the festival grounds, you'd be able to see Haines' wide-eyed stares as she grins and sings. The band drew heavily from their latest album, Synthetica, but also knew just the hits to pull out for some crowd-pleasing highlights, including "Empty", "Dead Disco" -- which, almost 10 years later, still holds up to be one of the band's best songs -- and an acoustic rendition of "Gimme Sympathy." Don't be surprised if, in a few years, Metric finally reach the top of festival bills.
Topping the night off at the main stage were headliners the Black Keys. Whether it's a rock stadium or a vast festival ground, this two-piece (expanded to a trio in concert) is packing venues everywhere -- and with good reason. The Black Keys are essentially the band that caters to everyone, from Top 40 lovers to pickier indie-rock enthusiasts, but they never lose a shred of musical quality. Watching them perform songs from their latest record, El Camino, it's clear that Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney are still penning hugely successful rock songs that have a definite voice of their own and are, let's face it, equal parts sexy and rockin' -- just the way one would like to end a weekend festival.
As an added bonus, creative multimedia company Memory Factory put together a grand finale where colourful pixel bracelets fell from the sky (via a huge crane that was looming over the stage the entire set), and one lucky bracelet contained a winning ticket for a free trip to Europe. It was a bit commercialized, but so are the Black Keys, and no one in attendance seemed to mind one bit because. Gosh darn it, we were just having a good time, listening to some good music. Rain or shine, that was Osheaga's motto.