Canadian prog metal band Voivod came onstage to a fully packed out Tsutaya O-West in Tokyo on Friday night. This intimate venue is located in Shibuya area and a well known local one with a capacity of 600 people. So many good venues are concentrated in this area. If you are a music fan and have a chance to come to Tokyo, I recommend to visit Shibuya area, you can find cool shows every night.
Voivod was formed in 1982 in Quebec, Canada. They are known as a progressive metal pioneer. The last time they came to Japan was as at the festival ‘Thrash Domination’ in 2014. You might not believe it, but this ‘The Wake Japan Tour 2019 35th Anniversary’ is their first headline concert here in these 35 years! We had been eagerly waiting for this show.
Their unique and powerful sound transcends genres. So it’s hard to classify their music into categories like metal, thrash, prog rock, and punk. But I’d say there is a kind of atmosphere of progressive metal in their latest album ‘The Wake’, released as their 14th studio album in September 2018.
They started the show with ‘Post Society’, the title track of their latest EP and the crowd went crazy! The mosh pit happened in the center of them lasted till the end. Their set was a perfect mix of old and new songs. The diehard Japanese audience kept on screaming the band name, ‘Voivod! Voivod!’ throughout the show. I was just blown away by their energy and enthusiasm.
Before playing Pink Floyd’s ‘Astronomy Domine’ in an encore, Singer Snake said ‘We will never forget Piggy!’ and the audience repeated his name. Piggy (Denis D’Amour), passed away in 2005, was a former guitarist of the band and main writer of their early albums. It is clear that he is still in their heart, but at the same time, the successor Chewy is a perfect guitarist for them. In addition to his incredible technique, he looked like he was performing in a very relaxed way on stage. It’s obvious he is welcomed by the other members. I could see that they are going well with each other, and they looked like a family through my lens.
Voivod will play in Australia for 4 days and go on tour The United States and Canada until May.
Get your ticket for their shows!
Denis “Snake” Bélanger - Vocals
Daniel “Chewy” Mongrain - Guitar
Michel “Away” Langevin - Drums
Dominic “Rocky” Laroche - Bass
Into My Hypercube
Order of the Blackguards
The Lost Machine
The Unknown Knows
Astronomy Domine (Pink Floyd cover)
Words and photos by Aki Fujita Taguchi
Proofreading by Yosuke Taguchi