The Watchmen continue to impress

By Darren Friesen

Lining the MacHall Ballroom Wall of Fame is a picture of the Watchmen, who last Saturday returned to the familiar venue to prove their status as a favourite Calgary band still exists.

A mostly college-aged crowd was once again treated to this Winnipeg-based rock band’s extraordinary musical talents and artistic lyrical expressions.

In classic Watchmen fashion, they waited until 11 p.m. to wander on stage and begin their performance. Meanwhile, the almost sold-out crowd of 20-somethings sat around consuming the ambiance and listening to opening act, See Spot Run.

With recognizable jingles in their repertoire, See Spot Run did very little to ignite the crowd which was enthusiastically awaiting Canada’s prairie dogs. Once the opening act concluded, people prepared themselves for the long-awaited return of the Watchmen whose latest CD is Silent Radar.

With the stereo typical concert entrance, the lights dimmed and the band took the stage. Before long, fans were reminded why they chose to come to this event. Daniel Greaves’ lead vocals were propelled throughout the room right away and the musically-gifted band members accompanied his lead.

They started the night’s festivities with the title track from Silent Radar and moved flawlessly into a crowd favourite, "Boneyard Tree." As with most talented bands, the Watchmen treated the audience to some musical montages, which included a Police cover tune and extended, charismatic variations of their previously released material. Other distinguishable tracks included "All Uncovered" and "Run and Hide." Having played together for a decade certainly shows in the Watchmen’s live performances–their playing style hasn’t changed. Instead, the band has grown instrumentally.

There was a tightness that existed throughout last Saturday’s concert, which only added to the heightened expectations of the dedicated following this band has amassed.

Outfitted with a very simple stage and light background, the Watchmen played for almost two hours with one encore. They reappeared to delight fans, pushing their set to very inspiring levels. Everyone in the band performed exceptionally. Ken Tizzard (bass) and Joey Serlin (guitar) played their instruments with surprising accuracy. Both guitars sounded like powerful engines maintaining their rpms in the heat of the race. Sam Kohn’s drums added the fuel that was needed.

The Watchmen’s performance was perhaps their finest one to date. It is safe to say after Saturday’s performance, their status on the Wall of Fame is safe.