HeavyTO Takes on Toronto With Mighty Sets From Slayer, Anvil and More
This past weekend's HeavyTO was the inaugural Toronto counterpart to the aptly named Montreal metal fest Heavy MTL. Situated in Downsview Park (ironically, also the location for the 2002 Pope-squat, the controversial two-week long Catholic convention that hosted Pope John Paul II and brought shame to the park due to massive septic flooding), the two-day fest boasted a who's who of the metal world.
Mighty acts like Anvil, Testament, Death Angel, Mastodon, Rob Zombie and the jewel of the holy thrash trinity, Slayer, headed up the final day of the mega-concert (July 24), with fans shifting between two massive side-by-side sound stages, making it near impossible to miss a moment of the eardrum-throttling action.
As Anvil pounded through their catalogue, frontman Steve 'Lips' Kudlow made it clear that the unsung stalwarts have more to offer than just nostalgic numbers. The Canadian metal pioneers may have been dubbed as underdogs on the festival website but this was clearly not the case Sunday in Toronto.
Then there were the acts that seemed to come slightly out of left field. Melissa Auf Der Maur rocking out during an early afternoon set clearly didn't sit well with most. Nor did having Canadian rockers Billy Talent oddly slotted between Slayer and Rob Zombie. And thanks to a guerrilla Jägermeister ad campaign gone awry, many fans objected with crude orange signs displaying insults like "Billy Talentless" and "Top 10 Ways to Kill Billy Talent." Chirpy lead singer Ben Kowalewicz was brave enough, however, to read the signs out from the stage, attempting to see the humor in the situation.
Earlier in the day, Billy Talent guitarist Ian D'sa told Noisecreep he was aware there