Ground Control to Major Metal Acts

Firewind

Written by Joe Taylor

May 08, 2024

I have recently heard about this new club in Parkdale called Ground Control. It is new and shiny and if you are a David Bowie fan, you may never leave. This is a breath of fresh air that is adding a contemporary twist to this underappreciated neighbourhood.  This is a place were great music stems from and Ground Control may give it a new lift off as new people come to see this fantastic club.

A couple of amazing Heavy metal acts blew into to town and filled the air with a rare Monday night excitement. First up is a band from the states called Edge of Paradise. They hail from LA and are promoting their 5th album- Hologram.

Toronto was very excited because this club was packed on a Monday night and out walks Edge of Paradise fronted by a Heavy Metal Diva whose serpentine charm grabbed every male in the audience. Margarita Monet walked out in a very detailed oriented Metal uniform with her long braided blue hair and moved like an animal looking for prey. I have never seen so many men whip out their device, and I do mean phones, you dirty little creatures, and grab footage of her as she snaked her way around the tight little stage. It was tight because they brought some backdrops that added a modern flair to the show.

This is the Nu Metal of today. Great uniforms, slick production, very polished stage moves. This band had all the key ingredients to keep a fickle audience engaged. Margarita did bring something special: her voice. When she was fully warmed up she would wail on you like a hungry banshee searching out for some fresh blood. The rest of the guys in the band added to the liturgy by showing their sign of strength by flailing about like bodyguards as Margarita kept everyone under her spell.

Here are some images of Edge of Paradise:

Firewind, is a Greek Power Metal Band that have been street warriors since about 2002. They are here promoting their 11th studio album, Stand United. They hit the stage and displayed their power immediately. When they got to “Set the World on Fire”, they pumped up the crowd and proved they were a worthy Power metal band. The crowd began to chant which just gave this band more strength to turn up their potential even higher.

I know I am going to show my age, but if I had to describe them to my friends, I would compare them to the great 1980’s band Saxon. They brought their own sense of street metal, but their vehicle was a little shinier and faster with more muscle. They went into another song called Destiny is calling that became a fist pumper. I loved watching the lead guitarist because not only was his precision intact, his virtuosity was refreshing. It felt both majestic and effortless. They slowed things down with a poignant song called “Longing to know you”. It was a beautiful song as well because it was about a Father knowing he is away from home a lot and the longing for his child, that goes along with that lifestyle.

Well if you are a Power Metal band, at one point you will have to write a song called, “Fallen Angel”. They did and it is yet another cool song to know. Another classic title would be “Rising Fire” which solidified them as an act that will be back for more. The sweet surprise for me was when they let the horde know it that we sang together, we clapped together and now it was time we danced together now. They geared up and pulled out that classic 80’s soundtrack hit- “Maniac” from the movie Flashdance.  Now that was a way to finish the evening off. What a solid evening of Metal from abroad.

Here are some images of Firewind:

After a solid evening like that, I hope Ground Control keeps pulling in some outside talent to add to the essence of Parkdale. This could be quite the game changer for the neighbourhood.

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