[EVENT REVIEW] Devin Townsend @ Fowler’s Live (Adelaide), 16 Mar 2010

The Devy tour was highly anticipated – and was, in fact, a sell-out, which is rare enough for this town. Happily, despite everybody’s high expectations, nobody was disappointed.

Well, not disappointed in the headlining act, anyway – but I’ll get to that.

I rocked up at Fowler’s fearing that I’d done my usual intend-to-get-there-on-time-and-fail trick, and that perhaps I would miss the support act, Contrive. Not that I particularly wanted to catch Contrive.

It was an interesting dilemma: having heard (negatively) about Contrive from tens of people, I didn’t particularly want to see them, and yet I didn’t want to be late. In the end, I got to the show with enough time to spare to get inside (yes, there was a line), have a yarn with Avalon at the door, catch up with two or three friends, and score beers, before Contrive hit the stage.

And, well, what can I say about these guys? Not anything good, that’s for sure. I had heard bad things about Contrive from every single person who has ever seen them and had cause to talk about them. When it’s one person, you go “well, grain of salt”. When it’s ten or more, you go “wow, there is something about this band that everybody hates”.

And I can tell you what it is. It is actually a combination of bad songwriting; a lack of originality; a sound that is very much of a high school band in a battle of the bands, in a venue where the sound desk is manned by the geriatric guy who does the lights and cleans the toilets; and capped off by performance values that are sub-standard.

Plus a set that went for half an hour longer than it should have.

Quite honestly…

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