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Class of 2015 – First Show

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Class of 2015 – First Show

Silver Dollar Room was amped with the anticipation of a good show. I finished my smoke outside as the first band started. In an age where we dig deep into the collections of music over the last hundred years, Fever City might well come up on top of bands influenced by the turn of the 70s music. There were also funk and psych elements. Their sound is straight out of that time with the singer looking and sounding like a young Geddy Lee.

Young Geddy Lee

Young Geddy Lee


Some songs were more influenced by newer bands like Sloan. None of the songs sounded like their recordings which come off like eating too many Sour Patch Kids with the vocals being pure sugar and the crunchy guitars tart. Listening to a couple of the tracks is too much. Their live show is not at all like this and I am glad. I WANT BANDS TO SUCCEED. Their show was great. Good stage presence
by all members. You could tell they really felt their music. They were very good musicians and they were very tight, not a note out of place. The songs were diverse, staying within the vast classic rock genre. The bar was lined with people watching the band. If you know The Silver Dollar Room you know that the bar is the opposite wall to the stage in the long and narrow establishment. There could have been 2 or 3 times as many people but it was bad weather and an early slot.

 

Fever City - by Jim Chadillon

Fever City – by Jim Chadillon

waxatlanticWax Atlantic took the stage to play some classic rock this time in the vein of the Beatles, Queen, and a less comical Supertramp with hints of modern bands The Killers and Mika (but more organic than soda pop). The band has members of Zeus, The Golden Dogs and Major Grange but they don’t sound like them. The singer sat at his keyboard stage centre. He made wise cracks about being thankful he could sit down because he had a rough hangover. The band didn’t move, they remained stationary and let the music flow in, around and between them. I come from a punk rock background where the bands go nuts on stage, but there was an awesome power in the band unmoving where no one moved more than the hungover seated lead singer. Along with the singer on keys there was a synth player, two guitars, a bass and drums. The songs never got boring and they were tight and well arranged. There was a great a capella part in the last song before the final flourish. The place was packed.

I took the time between bands to take in my surroundings. My tallboy was under $7. There were murals on the wall of cabaret dancers and vaudeville performers which were a throwback already when the Silver Dollar opened fifty or so years ago. The stage is lit with the blue and red hues of a blues club. The dollar has stayed true to its origins.

Only Yours (Lowell Sostomi of Great Bloomers) got up to play some synth rock. They sound like if The Editors and Angels and Airwaves got together and became the new backing band for Bruce Springsteen. The band had a guitar, drums, a synth and an electric organ which was housed in a homemade wooden box. I felt like there was too many effects on the vocals, though it almost worked with the synth rock sound. The songs would have these great build ups then just finish. I’m still waiting for the third act! The songs had an area rock quality to them. Some of the songs could totally be played at a hockey game. The band was tight as hell. Their songs were good and there were GIRLS DANCING!!!

They did have one song that sounded like an enslaved orca whale being hit by a team of men with mallets to force it to make noise. It was a sad song full of emotional turmoil but instead of evoking my empathy it transferred its pain to me. Cool experiment, not a cool feeling. It also made me feel like I might be an angry drunk music reviewer.

 

Only Yours - by Andrew Wyatt

Only Yours – by Andrew Wyatt

The last and final band was Holy Gasp. They are a bongo-led conundrum of primordial rock. Sax, bongo, double bass, guitar and drums — yeah two people play drums.

The Holy Gasp

The Holy Gasp

The singer sang as kooky as bongo rock sounds. He sung with a guttural vibrato in a cartoony expression of deep emotion. He was balding with a fro and wore sunglasses. The sax, double bass and bongos all wore sunglasses. The songs were like a tribal craze of jazz infused fury. There were some improvised jazz bits where the band lost their tightness but it still sounded good. Jazz, right? I’m not sure if the drummer was really needed as the bongos keep the beat. The bongo player did get a little eccentric and reminded me of the monkeys from the Basement Jaxx – Where’s Your Head At music video. They had a song called Fucking that really killed my libido. I don’t know if it was named that ironically. The dancing girls were into it though. The song was sad emotionally. A sad fuck. Still better than a sad wank. They had amazing stage presence and great musicianship. It’s too bad the crowd from before couldn’t handle the quirkiness of the whole thing. The band had some great crowd participation. My favorite part was when the singer tickled the guitarist. The singer got in an ‘argument’ with the sax where he yelled and the sax player retorted with a blast from his sax. They were all engaged in the jam with each other. It was beautiful to watch and a crazy show in general. The singer made jokes about the crowd looking so young, like they were playing a bar mitzvah. The crowd found it hilarious. These guys know how to entertain. Next time don’t leave before they play. You know who you are.


By: Tyler Brown
THE SCENE

Darrell