Photography / Words By: Jeanette LeBlanc
It was a perfect summer evening on Tuesday, July 25th, 2017, KoRn and Stone Sour’s The Serenity of Summer Tour made it’s way to the Budweiser Stage in Toronto with support from Skillet & Ded. This tour brought out people of all ages who busted out their finest metal tee’s and Canadian reefer.
The first band to hit the stage was Arizona’s Nu-est Ded. The only downfall of this band’s set was that majority of the ticket holders hadn’t made their way into the venue yet. These guys slayed!
Ded performed songs in support of their brand new album Misanthrope that came out a few days prior to the show. Standout tracks included “Anti-Everything”, “FMFY” and “Rope”.
Ded made for a perfect opener for this tour, their energy was high and their sound hit hard. We’d love to catch them headlining a smaller venue and we will make sure to keep their album on repeat for the next little while.
With Yelawolf being a no-show without explanation, Skillet were the next band to hit the stage. They kept the early 2000’s nu-stalgic vibe flowing. Opening with the first track “Feel Invincible” on their latest release Unleashed, it became apparent that they had already gained a steady following from the crowd.
Vocalist John Cooper paid tribute to the late Chester Bennington by dedicating their song “Sick Of It” all to him. Saying that he is sick of his idols losing their lives to suicide.
The standout feature of Skillet’s set came when they broke out the cello’s for a mesmerizing performance of “Awake & Alive” that brought drummer Jen Ledger off her kit and behind the mic to show off her pipes.
Finally, after another few hundred Slipknot shirts filled the venue and more cold beers were consumed, the time came for the pit to step it up a notch, and for Stone Sour to take over.
The band were greeted on stage by fans chanting “Fuck Nickelback” in light of Nickelback vocalist Chad Kroeger referring to Stone Sour as “Nickelback Lite” recently. Needless to say, SS fans didn’t agree with that comment…
The hype from the crowd was instantly matched as the opening track “YSIF” off of their brand new album Hydrograd lead the band on stage. This track was followed by the second song off the album “Taipei Person / Allah Tea”. It was clear that SS fans had prepped themselves and memorized the lyrics from the recent release as everyone sang along with vocalist Corey Taylor.
The band brought it all, and made Toronto feel like home as we watched bassist Johny Chow propose to his girlfriend on stage. Proposal goals, am I right?!
To top that off, the crowd also couldn’t help but catch their eyes constantly roaming to the side of the stage where Corey Taylor’s 14 year old son Griffin Parker Taylor managed to upstage his dad by rocking out harder than everyone at the show. The kid knew every. single. word. We’re sitting patiently waiting for his album to come out…
Fans were stricken by the monstrosity of Corey Taylor and Stone Sour, they truly made it a night for all to remember, all that was missing was an encore!
Finally as the sun set and the smoke clouds bloomed, the white wall of Mesa cabs and custom metal-worked accessories were revealed. Fans were ready, it was time for KoRn.
They opened their set with “Rotting in Vain” off of their latest release The Serenity of Suffering, then they immediately jumped into fan favorites “Falling Away From Me” and “Did My Time”.
Just when you thought fans gave it their all during Stone Sour, the pit became even heavier. Crowd favorites included “Y’all Want a Single”, “Shoots and Ladders”, “Got The Life”, “Coming Undone (feat. We Will Rock You)”, “A Different World (feat. Corey Taylor), “Blind”, and “Freak On a Leash”.
The stage lighting was perfect and the crowd could not get enough. Having briefly caught up with members of the band before the show, guitar player Brian “Head” Welch told me that he feels they are “getting old” and it get’s harder to bring it every night.
After watching their set, it definitely seemed like the opposite of his statement. These guys have now become the masters of their class. They have perfected what they do and headlining this tour is exactly where they are supposed to be.
Stone Sour Setlist:
Taipei Person / Allah Tea
Made of Scars
Say You’ll Haunt Me
Do Me a Favor
Rotting in Vain
Falling Away From Me
Did My Time
Here to Stay
Y’All Want a Single
Black Is the Soul
Shoots and Ladders
Got the Life
Make Me Bad
A Different World (with Corey Taylor)
Freak on a Leash