My Top Ten shows in 2010. Honourable mentions.
Over the next few days I'm going to lay out my Top Ten favourite shows that I attended over 2010. It's going to hurt to rack my brain as far back as January and February of this year, and some might get forgotten, but it's still worth a try. I'm going to write it across six blogs, two shows per blog, and I'll also try to find some media for the show, as in a youtube video, or some pictures or something.
One thing that I should mention is that I spent 2010 a lot more focused on my own band because Real Problems hit full stride this year, so this definitely prevented me from attending every show I would have liked to be at. I also tried not to put shows that my bands were apart of into the Top Ten, but it couldn't be avoided in one case. And that's also what I'm going to use this first blog for, the honourable mentions, or as I see it, the best shows that my bands were lucky enough to be on.
I hit the road on two different occasions this year with my two different bands. It is always exciting getting to attend shows in other cities, and probably the main reason why these two shows left lasting impressions on my brain.
Sunday July 18th 2010, Blacked Out & Jones Bones @ The Devils Gap in Banff.
The atmosphere for this show was electric. Cheap tall cans of Pilsner and tons of attractive girls made this not only a fun show to be apart of on the playing side, but I'm guessing also a fun show to be in the crowd as well.
Jones Bones played, blah blah blah, who cares. It was late in the night and many beers later when Blacked Out started up, because that's how Banff does it. Out late and partying hard on a Sunday night. Blacked Out is originally from Banff, but they have since relocated to Vancouver, so you know it's always going to be a big party when they come back to their old stomping grounds. This time would be no different and the crowd rocked the fuck out.
Blacked Out was killing it in front of the hometown crowd. A little sloppy because of all the drinks that were flowing so freely, but that's what punk rock is all about, right? People were dragging me to the bar left and right, I'm guessing because I was in the opening band, or maybe because that's just what happens in Banff. Chicks buying me shooters and dudes buying me beers. This one guy bought me a beer based on my wardrobe. He complimented me on my Jawbreaker back patch (just an old t-shirt converted into a back patch) and told me to follow him the bar. It was all pretty hilarious until the next day when I had to sit in a car for 8 hours feeling like I wanted to die. Well only the first couple of hours did I feel like I wanted to die, and after all was said and done it was worth it.
Friday September 3rd 2010, Black Wizard, Nu Sensae & Real Problems @ DV8 in Edmonton.
3 Vancouver bands in an Edmonton bar didn't make much sense, unless you were at the show, then it made all kinds of sense. Real Problems played, blah blah blah, who cares. Nu Sensae was up next, and sometimes you wonder if a 2 person band is going to actually be able to fill the stage, but they had no problems. Nu Sensae is female fronted, and she plays bass and sings. That thick distorted bass that I'm stoked on. Rather than have stage banter between songs it was mainly feedback. Not awful feedback that made you want to plug your ears, well not for the most part at least.
Usually I don't go for hipster indie rock, and thankfully that wasn't what this was. It may still be music for cool people, but this was punk. Stripped down (no guitars) with crafty song arrangements, a drummer that hits hard and gives his neck a workout, and a somewhat shy girl until it's singing time. She could belt it out. I enjoyed the performance a lot, and with them being a band from Vancouver it'll make it a lot easier for me to take in another one of their shows. Definitely worth checking out again!
After a quick turnover Black Wizard hit the stage and blew my mind. Literally. The top of my head blown clean off. Jonny 2 Sticks (drummer of Real Problems) and me kept looking at one another and going, 'Holy shit!' This was stoner metal at its finest and grooviest, it was lucky I had smoked a fatty with a local Edmontonian before their set, but it wouldn't have even mattered if I hadn't. It was easy to see that these dudes were killing regardless of me being under the influence of marijuana or not.
And did I mention the booze was flowing like crazy? What is it with Alberta? Well, I also think that Jonny Two Sticks had a lot to do with that on this night. Don't get me wrong, Rod from DV8 hooked us up large and in charge on the booze front, and he was a great party leader, in a rad little dive bar in Edmonton taking care of all the bands. If you're ever in Edmonton you need to check this place out, preferably to take in a show, but if not, hit them up at happy hour! Anyway, as I was saying, after the show was over it seemed to me that Jonny Two Sticks had shots lined up on the bar for anyone who wanted them. Black Wizard did some damage with him, and then Real Problems and our Edmonton friends hit it with him. Usually on the first show of a tour I try not to bender it too hard, pace myself if you will, but that did not happen this night. We were a mess the next morning.
And now the last and final show of the honourable mentions...
Friday October 1st 2010, DOA, Little Guitar Army, Real Problems & Child's Play @ The Biltmore Cabaret.
OK, straight to the goods cause I'd be amazed if you were still reading. But if you are I'll reward you with some VIDEO! Little Guitar Army is an 11 person band brandishing tiny instruments and giant punk rock prowess. Even though I was a little sour at them because one of their singers acted like a total cow towards Jonny Two Sticks, I could not deny the performance they put on. It was a complete spectacle, see for yourself!
And you can also not deny that DOA is a punk rock powerhouse in this city, and if you try to, well you were obviously not in attendance of this show. How old is Joey Shithead now? The thought never crossed my mind when watching him bounce around as if in his teens. He's a true performer, and DOA stirred the crowd at The Biltmore Cabaret into a whirlwind. If I wasn't busy checking up on the merch booth and selling swag every now again I'm sure I would have been in there getting sweaty with all the mosh pitters, as it looked like a great and not so violent rock out session. My fav. And not to mention the sound there was amazing, a definite shout out needed to go to the sound girl who did a spectacular job, and was a big reason why this show rocked so hard.
Alright, that's it for now. Stayed tuned as I'll begin the Top Ten in the next day or two.