A Wilhelm Scream / Living With Lions

A Wilhelm Scream / Living With Lions: live in Vancouverlive in Vancouver (2008)
live show

Reviewer Rating: 4.5

Contributed by: DarrenMcLeodDarrenMcLeod
(others by this writer | submit your own)

It seems as though every show that I want to see is on a weeknight. Considering most of my friends' busy school- or work-weeks, and the fact that few (if any) listen to any of the same bands as I do, it becomes rather difficult to find a comrade to enjoy a punk show with. But occasionally, the stars.

It seems as though every show that I want to see is on a weeknight. Considering most of my friends' busy school- or work-weeks, and the fact that few (if any) listen to any of the same bands as I do, it becomes rather difficult to find a comrade to enjoy a punk show with. But occasionally, the stars align and a show turns out perfectly: a Friday show with A Wilhelm Scream headlining, and a strong supporting cast to boot.

First up were Winnipeg's The Paperbacks, a band I'd heard a few positive words about, but had never listened to. However, their live show instantly made me a fan, as their energy and all-around good vibrations were exceptional. The band's sound falls halfway between early Get Up Kids and the Weakerthans, the latter making sense considering their hometown (and in fact, John K. Samson produced their latest release). It was a shame that the people handling doors at the show were so slow to get people in, because the venue was mostly empty as The Paperbacks were playing, despite there being many people waiting in line outside.

Next up were locals Carpenter, who brought their John Cougar influenced farm-core to the stage. Though they were sorely lacking in fresh organic produce at their merch stand, the band's performance was top-notch, reminding me at times of the live show of a little Canadian band called Moneen. Yeah, their energy was huge. The band mostly played tracks from their recent Smallman Records effort, Law of the Land, but threw in a few tracks from their debut EP as well. Although I already enjoy the full-length, the live show added new perspective to the tracks. Though I usually find the gang vocals of "Six Shots" a bit much on the disc, shouting them out with the rest of the crowd made me see the track in a new light.

Brighter Stars
You Can't Keep a Good Man Down
Until the Sun's Up
A Different Life
Six Shots
You Might Be Right
Father's Land

The third act of the night were local pop-punk/hardcore up-and-comers, Living with Lions. The band is supporting their recently released full-length, Make Your Mark. They played a number of tracks from that, but also played almost every song from their debut EP, Dude Manor. The band was very lively, and had really stepped it up since my last encounter with them. They'd clearly developed quite the local fan base, with a lot of the crowd dancing or shouting along with them. The band's stage presence was great, and they even broke out some foam B.C. Lions' souvenir hats to show their Rain City pride.

By the time A Wilhelm Scream hit the stage, the venue had presumably reached capacity and had the temperature to show it: the place was sweltering. And from the first chords of "Get Mad, You Son of A Bitch," the crowd refused to let the heat dampen the mood. The band matched the crowd's intensity throughout the set, and appeared genuinely shocked and thankful for just how crazy the audience was going for the set. The band rarely broke for more than a quick breath before firing into another track, keeping the energy high throughout the set. About halfway through the set, however, the band showed their lighter side as they broke into an extremely recognizable tune. I was trying to place my finger on where I'd heard the melody before, at which point vocalist Nuno Pereira said "This is that new shit! No, no, waitâ?¦ this is thatâ?¦ Nintendo Wii shit!" That's when it dawned on me: the Wii Bowling theme. Yes. A breathtaking rendition, I must say.

The band then continued to play a great set, mixed of tracks from their entire catalogue, although clearly showing preference to their most recent effort, Career Suicide. Though they looked completely drained by the end of their performance, the crowd chanted for "just one more," and the band was more than happy to comply, throwing out a great rendition of "We Built This City! (On Debts and Booze)" to close out the night.

Get Mad, You Son of A Bitch
The Kids Can Eat a Bag of Dicks
Jaws 3, People 0
The Soft Sell
Famous Friends and Fashion Drunks
I Wipe My Ass With Showbiz
5 to 9
These Dead Streets
Mute Print
Me vs. Morrissey In The Pretentiousness Contest (The Ladder Match)
Anchor End
Killing It
The Horse
Die While We're Young
The King Is Dead
Encore: We Built This City! (On Debts and Booze)

Four great bands, each performing great sets. One could hardly ask for more.


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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
thegreatestmanalive (August 1, 2008)

the ottawa show was incredible, ive never seen a band that looked like they were having so much fun, just a really great, fun show

treos (July 31, 2008)

i was at the london show too, was unreal.

Trauma16 (July 31, 2008)

Saw this tour in London with the fullblast.
Best show i have been to in a long time, in terms of pure fun, energy and just plain out asskicking.

Anthony84 (July 30, 2008)

For Teeto concerning Le Gymnase in Montreal
I think it will be perfect for AWS. I went there for The Loved Ones earlier this month and it was great. The stage is quite low and is made "sur le large" so the crowd can easily be close to the band and the sound was good. 4$ beer and 13$ pitcher if I remember correctly haha. It's kind of a big room though so I hope we have a big turnout.

teeto (July 30, 2008)

seein 'em friday night montreal, anyone know what le gymnase is like as a venue?

snorkie (July 30, 2008)

i love a wilhelm scream, but score is for Carpenter.

VictorIkpeba24 (July 30, 2008)

AWS is simply the best live band around.

thegreatestmanalive (July 30, 2008)

seeing these guys on thursday, cant wait career suicide never gets old

Hayman (July 29, 2008)

A Wilhelm Scream are probably the best live band going at the moment, Tore the place apart in Sydney!

DarrenMcLeod (July 29, 2008)

Jay3133 - they did play The Rip, actually. I made a mistake on the setlist.... should be The Rip, not Die While We're Young.

And yeah, Lithram, definitely one of the best shows I've ever been to, as well. Glad to see another BCer who enjoyed the show.

Lithran (July 29, 2008)

Was at this show and it was honestly one of the best concerts i had been to in awhile. All the bands but on amazing sets and it was a good time all around! I heard AWS put on a good live show but they still managed to blow me away!

IamMclovin (July 29, 2008)

"appeared genuinely shocked and thankful for just how crazy the audience was going for the set"
That's cool because the times that I have seen AWS live the crowd has been fucking dead.

powerhour (July 29, 2008)

seeing this show tonight but with The Fullblast!!!

mikexdude (July 29, 2008)

I can't always listen to them recorded, it's sometimes a little much, but A Wilhelm Scream live is unmatchable.

Jay3313 (July 29, 2008)

Replace "These Dead Streets" with "The Rip" and you got the set-list for Calgary and Medicine Hat.

Good stuff.

Lions was like karaoke in Medicine Hat. Singer had laryngitis, so random people came up and sang. Pretty good set considering.

MrStylson (July 29, 2008)

AWS are one of the most consistently outstanding live acts around.

They're always high energy, they always have a blast on stage, and they always get the crowd into that "high energy, having a blast" vibe. Then they will always be around after the show to shoot shit with anyone. It is blindingly clear that they absolutely love what they're doing.

If A Wilhelm Scream comes to your town, do not miss it.

spoon_of_grimbo (July 29, 2008)

score is for that set! they played a similar one when i saw them in birmingham (UK) back in january, it was fucking insane! i've never seen any band so visibly having so much fun playing live as these guys did, and the venue wasn't even half full!

BarleyPat (July 29, 2008)

Shit! I saw them twice in the early part of this tour and they were not yet playing either Get Mad or We Built This City (two of my favorites off Career Suicide). Also, am I the only one who thinks M vs. M (The Ladder Match) is completely overrated and one of their least interesting songs? They play it every time, and I could do w/out hearing it ever again.

_911 (July 29, 2008)

i went to the st catharines show last night. the small crowd for a wilhelm scream was soo into it. the band played amazing well.

andrewking (July 29, 2008)

Glad to hear Carpenter put on a good show. I've really been digging that full-length of late.

Just missed this show last night in St. Catharines, ON by mistake. I felt pretty dumb at 10 p.m.

Fear Before the March of Flames tonight - worth it?

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