Photos and words by Codey Tanner
About an hour before Dean Brody's concert at theBudweiser Stage in Toronto, it was raining so much that streets of the city were flooding, and transit routes were being temporarily shut down. Getting anywhere within the downtown core of Toronto became extra difficult. Despite this, the venue was entirely packed. Seats filled to the brim and barely any spots were available in the standing section in front of the stage.
Alan Doyle (of Great Big Sea fame) was the chosen support act for the evening. Great Big Sea has been retired since 2013 after the band’s 20th Anniversary tour, but Alan is still going strong with continued solo touring. With a mix of Great Big Sea favourites and newer material from his 2017 solo album “A Week at the Warehouse”, Alan had the crowd absolutely roaring, singing along with every word.
There was a brief break between the end of Alan’s set and the start of Dean’s, however there was no break in the excitement for fans. It was hinted that Dean will have a big announcement coming sometime next week (Aug 20-24) and that fans should stay tuned to his social media for more details.
As expected, Dean took the stage with explosive energy - the only Canadian country artist to ever sell out the Budweiser Stage in Toronto. With fan favourites spanning his six studio album career, including “Canadian Girls” and his new single “Good Goodbye” from earlier this year, Dean followed up his sold out 2017 appearance at the Budweiser Stage with another fantastic show.
Photos and words by Anthony Smith.
Fresh into their Forever On Your Side tour, Needtobreathe reached one of the most scenic stages in Toronto, the RBC Echo Beach. Its easy to see why they have cemented a position as one of South Carolinas greatest rock exports. Bear with his snarly vocals and his brother Bo running around exploring the edges of the stage - the whole stage immediately screams confidence. Bear made sure everyone was having a Great Night by climbing into the audience and running a lap without losing his iconic hat.
The stage was set up with thin pillars of lights like a neon forest the band could run up and through for their more upbeat numbers – which was a generous chunk of the set! Covering the Elvis Presley hit Bossa Nova Baby the stage suddenly transformed into a psychedelic wonderland. Magically rising from the rear of the stage on a platform, Bear serenaded Toronto in a disco ball jacket with Difference Maker, while mimicking the CN Tower off in the distance behind him.
A short Sigur Ros interval and the forest stage became a campfire sitting under the stars for a few acoustic numbers. Joining them on stage for Forever On Your Side was the excellent tour support Johnnyswim who were greeted with a very warm welcome after winning over the crowd with their spectacular opening set.
Needtobreathe provided Toronto with a very memorable night and its clear they are always welcome to visit again.
Toronto's Music Blog
When music comes to Toronto, we show it!