Gig photography by Hollie Turner.

Forming, quite remarkably, way back in 1993  – this Canadian outfit from Mississauga, Ontario – have just released their fifth album ‘ Afraid of Heights. ‘ This year they played Download and are now out and about across the  UK throughout October, their first UK tour in 4 years. We sent our photographer Hollie Turner across to cover the fun with Billy Talent.

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Since the release of their self-titled debut in 2003, Billy Talent have cemented themselves as a one of the most important, influential rock bands in the past decade.  Boasting nearly one million albums sold in Canada alone and nearly 3 million albums sold internationally, the band hold one of the most stellar live reputations going, having played incredible shows at Reading & Leeds Festivals in the UK, and selling out London’s Brixton Academy multiple times in the past decade.

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Lead singer Ben Kowalewicz had this to say about their new album: “This record is about struggle, both within ourselves and within the society we live. It’s about asking questions. It’s about friendship and loyalty, and it’s about choosing not accept things that don’t apply to us, that don’t represent us. It’s about believing in the person that’s reflected in the mirror and taking responsibility. It’s about the pressures that society creates and how we’re all trying to figure out where we fit in. It’s about following your dreams and knowing that when you get knocked down you have to get back up. It’s about listening to our planet and learning to respect her. It’s about love and loss and life… but more importantly it’s about the power of ROCK ’N ROLL!” 

Billy Talent tonight are joined by Young Guns,  the English alternative rock band from High Wycombe – who released their fourth album ‘Echoes’ in September, and Say Yes – a Toronto-based rock trio comprised of former members of acts like Alexisonfire, Jersey, and Saint Alvia.

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Billy Talent are truly energetic live –  lead singer Kowalewicz  constantly jumping and dancing around like a maniac.  During their set the band played ‘Pins and Needles’ and ‘Surrender’ taken from their ‘Billy Talent II’ album –  the crowd really got into it shouting all the words.

A few songs into their set Kowalewicz stopped the set dead to help a girl down the front who had passed out. Literally – whilst he did this, the entire crowd were silent – and everybody clapped him out of respect when he said they’d begin the song again and continue the show.

Catch Billy Talent are now touring through Europe before Christmas and have announced a tour of Canada in the new year. They will be back – check them out when they return to the UK.

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