Wednesday, 21 January 2009

memorializing... (a few reflections)

As planned, I attended the Adrian Bromley memorial concert on Saturday night. What surprised me though was the fact that things weren't as sad as I'd expected. Don't get me wrong - it was a struggle to hold back the tears now and then, but Adrian's energy and enthusiasm seemed to infuse the entire crowd. It was definitely more celebration of his spirit and accomplishments than melancholy, and brought together so many people Adrian had linked up in the first place.

The event drew a really impressive turnout, including many people up from the U.S., and produced an incredible atmosphere of camaraderie and commiseration. The bands, except for Woods of Ypres at the end, played short sets to leave time for people to connect and for a few (Adrian's brother, fiancee, friends and colleagues) to get up on stage, share some reflections on his life - and, in the case of his twin, to lead us in a silent moment of raised metal horns.

It was a fairly diverse but mostly metal line-up, ranging from an impressive Black Sabbath cover band, to extreme metal, comedy, and an acoustic set by Musk Ox (a band Adrian had been fervently promoting before his death). A photo and video presentation set to Green Carnation's Light of Day, Day of Darkness gave us all a brief look back on Adrian's numerous antics and remarkable capacity to act as social glue. (I was proud to be included in several shots.) Some of us managed to snag a commemorative t-shirt or back issues of Unrestrained! (I completed my own set). And I gather the silent auction and fundraising at the door were pretty successful but it was also successful in an emotional sense, a fitting tribute to someone who meant so much to so many.

It was a tricky event for me to review, and I'm not convinced I should have, but I wanted to see something about it in Exclaim!... You can read my 'official' review here if you're interested.
Woods of Ypres / Musk Ox / Eclipse Eternal / Piledriver / Detsorgsekalf / Endorphins / Into The Void, Opera House, Toronto ON January 17

(Looks like my Rotting Christ review is up too.)

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