Photo & Words By: Adam R. Harrison
It was three headliners for the price of one on Wednesday night, July 25, as The Revolution3 Tour hit Toronto’s Budweiser Stage featuring Stone Temple Pilots, Bush, and The Cult.
Each band were given an hour to do their thing starting with the new Stone Temple Pilots. Currently touring for their latest and second self-titled album, and for the first time with new singer Jeff Gutt. However, if you didn’t know any better, you’d think you were watching the ghost of Scott Weiland, as Gutt not only sounded, but looked almost identical to the deceased vocalist. STP ripped through a set of mostly classic songs starting with “Wicked Garden.” The refreshed band radiated with pleasure to be back on the big stage again and the fans seemed open to the idea of a new STP. We had the opportunity to hear a couple new songs like “Meadow” and “Roll Me Under” before the band closed with the popular “Sex Type Thing.”
The middle set belonged to Gavin Rossdale and Bush, who exploded with energy from the get go, opening their set in typical Bush fashion with “Everything Zen.” Rossdale, sporting his usual ripped sleeves and arm band, charmed us with his unique and fast-paced fronting and guitar playing style. Everyone in the crowd was off their feet for 90s favourites like “Chemicals Between Us” and “Swallowed” but were also pleased with newer tunes like “The Sound of Winter” and an impressive cover of The Beatles’ “Come Together.” During “Little Things,” Rossdale took to the crowd to sing and jump around with the fans all around the arena. Upon return, they closed their hour with “Comedown” and left us all on a high.
Rounding out the memorable evening were 80s legends, The Cult. Who opened their hour of greatest hits with “Wild Flower” from 1987’s Electric. The Cult must have claimed top spot with their seniority. Admittedly, the energy levels had dropped after Bush’s charismatic set and some of the younger audience members decided to beat the traffic home. Front man and iconic rock star, Ian Astbury, still looked the part dressed in all black, equipped with man bun, leather jacket, and sunglasses. He doesn’t move quite as fast or hold the notes as long as he used to but he was just as enthused to be back headlining an amphitheatre show again. And we were just as enthused to be hearing all the classic tunes like “Sweet Soul Sister,” “She Sells Sanctuary,” and the set closing “Love Removal Machine” again.
In retrospect, Bush really should have been closing the night. They’re the tightest, best sounding, and most relevant of the three bands and the evening climaxed during their set. Even their stage production was the biggest and most vibrant. But other than the small miss-judgement to the order of events, this was a pretty perfect night for rock n’ roll fans old and young. Not often do you get to see three era-defining bands in one night!