tour dates

Gabriel & Dresden Take It To The Streets @ Lovefest 07, Announce Toolroom Knights Tour Dates

Gabriel & Dresden is a musical partnership responsible for 17 #1 hits on the Billboard charts, remixes of The Killers, Shiny Toy Guns, Annie Lennox, Dido, Jewel, and were also tapped to remix Gustavo Santaolalla’s Academy Award winning theme track from Brokeback Mountain “The Wings”. With the success of their just completed year-long tour in support of their critically acclaimed artist album released just last year, Gabriel & Dresden have proved that both in the studio and behind the decks at venues around the globe, they have become known as a genre defying and dance floor mastering duo. They are set to do it all over again – with Toolroom Knights Vol 2, releasing on Oct 23rd backed with a long list of tour dates – all kicking off at Lovefest.

At this year’s Lovefest, Gabriel & Dresden will be performing both in the Parade and at the much anticipated after event with Sasha, with quite a bit to celebrate. Toolroom Records tapped the famed team to mix their second edition in the Toolroom Knights series. Toolroom Records is responsible for some of the most forward thinking house music releases in the last 4 years, and has received numerous nods in recognition for the feat. Recent Toolroom releases include Mark Knight’s chart topping “Insatiable”, Artificial Funk “Your Never Alone” Noirs “My MTV” and recent club anthems from Robbie Rivera “Your Mistake”, Paul Harris “Find Yourself A Friend, Dave Spoon “Outside EP” & Fedde le Grand “Just Trippin’

Toolroom Knights Volume 2 is a dual disc that again refutes any attempt to pigeonhole the sound that Gabriel & Dresden encompass. This mix takes the listener on a more organic and textural musical landscape, adeptly blending sounds from indie rock band Junior Boys to Claude Von Stroke, Apparat, and The Knife. This collection brings the debut of Gabriel & Dresden’s popular remix of the Killers “Read My Mind,” and includes exclusive tracks such as Gabriel & Dresden’s re-interpretation of label boss Mark Knight’s (with D. Ramirez) “Columbian Soul”, their remix of Monochrome “Pearl”, and Shlomi Aber & Itamar Sagi’s “Blonda”. Unreleased Josh Gabriel tracks “Summit” and “Crosstalk” add a peek into the solo record he’s quietly making.

music videos

Vintage English songster, Stephen Coates a.k.a. The Real Tuesday Weld, shines on WNYCs Soundcheck, YouTube takes notice and features the inventive Elliot Kew directed Cloud Cuckoo video.

Vintage English songster, Stephen Coates a.k.a. The Real Tuesday Weld, shines on WNYC’s Soundcheck, YouTube takes notice and features the inventive Elliot Kew directed “Cloud Cuckoo” video.

“The London Book of The Dead gives yesterday’s music its due, and in the process brings an elegance and refinement to the sounds of today.” – Miami New Times

“The London Book of The Dead reverberates with echoes of everything from Tin Pan Alley to Tom Waits.” – Metromix

The Real Tuesday Weld a.k.a. Stephen Coates recently appeared on WNYC’s Soundcheck with John Schaefer. Coates discussed his album The London Book of The Dead, his inspirations, and life growing up in England. Schaefer described The Real Tuesday Weld as “Serge Gainsbourg and Cole Porter on Absinthe creating an old-fashioned radio play.” YouTube has also taken notice of Coates and is currently featuring The Real Tuesday Weld’s new video for the The London Book of The Dead track “Cloud Cuckoo.”

The first thing that strikes you about any album by The Real Tuesday Weld is the fact that every element in Coates’ compositions seems to be drawn from sources many decades old. The second thing that strikes you is that his music sounds completely new.

For Coates, the breakthrough in his professional journey came in the form of a pair of surreal dreams in which he was visited by the legendary English music hall singer Al Bowlly and the late actress Tuesday Weld. These experiences convinced him to focus on a career in music and eventually led to the recording of The Valentine EP, which would be followed shortly by the full-length When Cupid Meets Psyche.

His sophomore album and debut on Six Degrees is a deeply complex and lovely full-length CD titled I, Lucifer. The album is a conceived soundtrack to Glen Duncan’s (Coates’ friend and former flatmate) book of the same name about the Devil’s take on humanity.

Coates’s follow-up release on Six Degrees, The Return of The Clerkenwell Kid, continued to develop what Coates has come to call his “antique beat” sound, putting modern technology to the task of creating new music out of a kaleidoscopic array of old sound sources. The sound of The Return of The Clerkenwell Kid was somewhat different from that of its predecessor, but the modus operandi remained basically the same and no one would ever mistake it for anything other than an album by The Real Tuesday Weld.

This brings us back to his latest, and anxiously awaited, album for the Six Degrees label. The London Book of The Dead may sound at first like a startlingly morose title, but in fact it’s more whimsically humorous than morbid. It refers to the Bardo Thodol (or “Tibetan Book of The Dead”), which describes the passage of the soul from the end of one life to the beginning of another.

“I thought it would be funny if there were a book like that for the English,” says Coates. “The album felt like that to me – a way of moving from one state to another, and all set against the backdrop of this city.”

Amongst the whimsy and humor are lyrical concerns drifting between such weighty topics as death, religious faith, honesty, drugs, and disease. The songs are informed in part by Coates’s own recent passage through several significant events: “Last year I became a father, and then two weeks later my own father died,” he says. “So I was in this kind of psychic spin between birth and death, and this album came out of that in some way.”

“The Real Tuesday Weld is a pop magician breathing new life into a world of vintage, dust-scratched music, inspired by old-time heroes like Cole Porter and raunchy baroque popster Serge Gainsbourg. Waving his wand over everything from dusty country and western to doo-wop, Coates gives this ancient warehouse of sounds a twenty-first century makeover, resplendent with the finest beats, breaks and samples.” – Time Out London

“By mixing flapper jazz with oddball computer instrumentation, Coates has… headed into uncharted territory… Where most down-tempo electronic music aims lazily at dinner parties or weed-addled folk lazing on sofas, The Real Tuesday Weld conjures an era when the chaise lounge was king and the smoking jacket mandatory.” – The London Telegraph

“The superbly arranged, wickedly clever textures and beats will set your toes to tapping, but its bittersweet melodies will linger for days and weeks.” – LA Weekly

“Imagine an English-speaking Serge Gainsbourg rolling around Tin Pan Alley with synthesizer in hand.” – The New Yorker

“Pairing Portishead’s dark theatrics with Serge Gainsbourg’s dirty-old-man mirth, Coates’ melancholic take on love is devilishly good!” – Wired

The London Book of The Dead Tracklisting:

Stream The Album HERE

01. Blood Sugar Love
02. The Decline and Fall of The Clerkenwell Kid
03. It’s A Wonderful Li(f)e
04. Cloud Cuckooland
05. Kix
06. Love Sugar Blood
07. I Loved London
08. I Believe
09. Song For William
10. Waltz For One
11. Ruth Roses and Revolvers
12. Dorothy Parker Blue
13. Last Words (MP3)
14. Into The Trees
15. Bringing The Body Back Home
16. Aparte

Greg Summerlin — All Done In Good Time — (Superphonic Recordings)

Greg Summerlin — All Done In Good Time — (Superphonic Recordings)

tour dates

Citizen Cope Three Full Band Dates – End of December

Citizen Cope Three Full Band Dates – End of December

Cope and the band will be hitting DC, Baltimore and Philly at the end
of December. Tickets are on presale now through Cope’s ticketing site /calendar.aspx
. To purchase tickets you will need the password “cope” (case

Thursday, December 27 – 9:30 Club – Washington, DC
Friday, December 28 – Ram’s Head Live – Baltimore, MD
Saturday, December 29 – The Electric Factory – Philadelphia, PA

Scroll through the tour dates section for a more complete listing of
these shows.

Tour Dates – November and December

Wednesday, November 7 – Solo Acoustic Show
Lincoln Theatre
200 Bloomfield Avenue
West Hartford, CT
7:30pm Doors
All Ages
Purchase tickets starting tomorrow at: /calendar.aspx
You will need the password “cope” (case sensitive).
For more information: /about-facilities-lincoln.htm

Thursday, November 8 – Solo Acoustic Show
Paramount Center For The Arts
1008 Brown Street
Peekskill, NY 10566
6:30pm Doors
All Ages
Purchase tickets starting tomorrow at: /calendar.aspx
You will need the password “cope” (case sensitive).
For more information: /

Wednesday, November 14 – Two Solo Acoustic Shows are SOLD OUT!
Tin Angel
20 South Second Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

Saturday, November 17 – Solo Acoustic Show
Bearsville Theatre
291 Ticker Street
Woodstock, NY
All Ages
8:00pm (Doors)
Stay tuned to for ticket info.
For more information: http://www.bearsvilletheater .com/

Thursday, December 27 – Full Band Show
9:30 Club
815 ‘V’ Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
All Ages
7:30pm Doors
Purchase tickets at: .
You will need the password “cope” (case sensitive).
For more information: =1024&ba=IE&bv=6.0&bp=Win

Friday, December 28 – Full Band Show
Ram’s Head Live
20 Market Place
Baltimore, MD 21202
All Ages
8pm Doors
Purchase tickets at: .
You will need the password “cope” (case sensitive).
For more information:

Saturday, December 29 – Full Band Show
The Electric Factory
421 North 7th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107
All Ages
7:30pm Doors
Purchase tickets at: .
You will need the password “cope” (case sensitive).
For more information:

Clipd Beaks announces extensive North American tour in support of upcoming debut full-length, Hoarse Lords. Band that began playing together as kids, now plenty old enough to drive cross country

Clipd Beaks announces extensive North American tour in support of upcoming debut full-length, Hoarse Lords. Band that began playing together as kids, now plenty old enough to drive cross country.

“Highly recommended if you like to slap yourself in the face while you boogie.” – The Fader

“The whole ’90s noise-punk sound is pretty tired, but Clipd Beaks is one of the few bands around that gives the wavering genre hope.” – XLR8R

“Supermax-tight monolith monsters of psychedelia.” – L.A. Weekly

“Dark and noisy and messy.” – Vice

Los Angeles-based fans of West coast psychedelic thrash prog-rockers Clipd Beaks will have the opportunity to see the band off as it launches an extensive North American tour on October 28th at the LA club, The Echo. The band will be kicking up dust all over the country following the November 6th release of its debut full-length Hoarse Lords on the New York-based Lovepump United label, home of the much blogged about band HEALTH, Genghis Tron and others. Clipd Beaks will be on the road through December in support of the album.

The creation of Hoarse Lords began in the summer of 2005 when Clipd Beaks relocated from Minnesota to Oakland, California. Influenced by hobo culture, the drugged-up hyphy sounds currently dominating Bay Area airwaves, and underground “Neu San Francisco” warehouse parties where techno bangers fade into tribal noise jams, everything on Hoarse Lords is turned up to 11. Harsh and distorted, it’s a fitting new sound for a band that references “clipping” in their name, and feels every bit as sick and violent as a severed, bleeding beak.

Even the album’s artwork has been organically birthed. The rather interesting visuals feature the work of Erik Luken, who recently created the album art for the Young Machetes LP by Blood Brothers. Luken doesn’t touch computers — all of his work is black and white and hand drawn — a style which recently prompted Nik Mercer of the website to exclaim, “The packaging is stellar… entirely hand-written in some bizarre sort of hybrid between hieroglyphics and English…”

Formed in 2003, Clipd Beaks started off with little more than a battered Arp Axxe synthesizer and a microphone but quickly set about marking off its own turf at the intersection of psychedelic post-punk and futuristic noise. Bassist Scott Ecklein and drummer Ray Benjamin met at age seven and have played music together ever since. The nascent Beaks rhythm section met guitarist/synthesist Greg Pritchard inadvertently when, during his “reactionary prepubescent punk” phase, he violently beat on one of Benjamin’s drums while calling them wankers due to their pre-teen band’s sonic similarities to Smashing Pumpkins.

After graduating from high school, where they experimented with mind-altering substances such as British rock and San Diego art-core, the three boys played in an epic instrumental post-rock/prog band. Singer Nic Barbeln was in a different band, whose delayed vocal loops and jam band tendencies they secretly admired from afar. When Barbeln’s band’s drummer ran off to Woodstock to become a Buddhist monk, he was invited to join the other boys for an impromptu jam sesh, and on a sub-zero January night in a loft above a metal bar in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Clipd Beaks was born!

Its first record — which the band recorded and released itself — came out that July. It was called Gang Caves and it was about caves near the Mississippi River that gangs used to hang out in. Incorporating lo-fi orchestral samples, liberal use of the aforementioned analog synth, and effected vocals á la Vincent Price’s cameo on “Thriller”, the record still stands as a bizarre testament to the young Beaks’ insatiable appetite for experimentation.

In March of 2006, Tigerbeat6 released the Preyers EP featuring the song “Messed up Desert” which will appear on the soundtrack (alongside Broken Social Scene and Madlib among others) to the upcoming film Gardens of The Night (LINK) starring John Malkovich. Recorded while the band was packing its bags in preparation for an epic cross-country move to California, Preyers documented the anxiety of five boys growing into men in the strange last days of American Empire, leaving their placid Midwest homes behind to venture into the unknown.

Now happily settled in Oakland, the members of Clipd Beaks sound like they’re pushing themselves further and further into some unknown and terrifying black hole. On Hoarse Lords, song titles like “Melter” (MP3), “Wrathscapes”, and “We Will Bomb You” set the scene: these are the end times, and Clipd Beaks is right there with you, banging their drums in a tornado. As the record builds to a ferocious conclusion, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, a feeling of peace beyond the point of pain. We can’t escape, so we submit, and are consumed.

Clipd Beaks Live:
10/28 Los Angeles, CA The Echo
10/31 San Francisco, CA Hemlock Tavern
11/01 Oakland, CA 21 Grand
11/02 Portland, OR Ground Kontrol
11/03 Seattle, WA Comet Tavern
11/04 Missoula, MT The Palace
11/06 Fargo, ND The Aquarium
11/08 Minneapolis, MN Triple Rock
11/09 East Moline, IL Mixtapes
11/10 Chicago, IL Ronny’s Bar
11/11 Lafayette, IN TBA
11/12 Cincinatti, OH Skull Lab
11/13 Columbus, OH Bourbon St.
11/15 Toronto, ONT Sneaky Dee’s
11/16 Montreal, PQ Casa del Popolo
11/17 Quebec City, QC Le Bal du Lezard
11/18 Jamaica Plains, MA The Milky Way
11/19 Annadale-on-Hudson, NY Bard College
11/21 Providence, Rhode Island AS220
11/23 New York, NY Cake Shop
11/24 Brooklyn, NY Todd P Show (Venue TBA)
11/25 Philadelphia, PA Queen Sheba II
11/27 Purchase, NY SUNY Purchase
11/28 Washington DC The Bobby Fisher Memorial
11/29 Columbia, SC New Brookland Tavern
11/30 Atlanta, GA Lenny’s Bar
12/01 Birmingham, AL Bottletree
12/02 Hot Springs, AR The Exchange
12/04 Houston, TX Proletariat
12/05 San Antonio, TX Rock Bottom Tattoo Bar
12/06 Denton, TX Secret Headquarters
12/07 Austin, TX Emo’s
12/10 Phoenix, AZ Modified Arts

Hoarse Lords Tracklisting:

Release Date: November 6th, 2007

01. Melter (MP3)
02. Wrathscapes
03. Manipulator
04. High on Charms
05. Hoarse Lords
06. We Will Bomb You (We Will)
07. Woo Melodies
08. Black Glass
09. Let It Win


News In Rock – Serj Tankians Elect the Dead

Serj has released two great pieces of media for you. The first is a video of Serj interviewing himself with some great personality parodies. It is truly funny and he even gives you a tour of his home studio. The second bit of media is the audio stream for the single off of his new record “Elect The Dead” which is released 10/23. This record is going to be big, don’t let this pass you by.

Serj interviewing himself. Notice anything weird? “News In Rock – Serj Tankian’s Elect the Dead.”

tour dates

The Fall of Troy touring with Coheed and Cambria and Clutch

The Fall of Troy touring with Coheed and Cambria and Clutch
The Fall of Troy

Seattle’s progressive youth group, The Fall of Troy will be traveling the country with their Equal Vision labelmates Coheed and Cambria on a North American tour this fall. Sandwiched between the two prog-punk bands on the tour is Maryland’s blue-collar rock band, Clutch.

The summer of 2007 has been a whirlwind for The Fall of Troy who kicked it off by releasing their third album, Manipulator to astonishing praise. Alternative Press calls Manipulator, “an outstanding and remarkably diverse effort,” while the more aggressive publication Decibel singles out the album as being “hyper-caffeinated and wonderfully unusual.”

Immediately following the release of Manipulator in May, The Fall of Troy earned a spot opening for The Deftones on their 48-date national tour, which night after night grew The Fall of Troy’s loyal fanbase. The band continued their summer touring schedule with respected musicians RX Bandits and Maps & Atlases, before headlining with Horse The Band and Tera Melos in August.

The Fall of Troy’s incredible live energy will be brought to the forefront while supporting Coheed and Cambria, beginning in late October.
Tour Dates
10/29 – Toronto, ONT – Kool Haus – 06:30 PM
10/30 – Cleveland, OH – The House of Blues – 06:30 PM
10/31 – Cleveland, OH – The House of Blues – 06:30 PM
11/01 – Detroit, MI – The Fillmore of Detroit – 06:30 PM
11/02 – Chicago, IL – Riviera Theatre – 05:30 PM
11/06 – Denver, CO – Fillmore – 06:00 PM
11/07 – Magna, UT – The Great Salt Air – 06:00 PM
11/09 – San Francisco, CA – Warfield Theatre – 06:30 PM
11/10 – San Diego, CA – Soma – 07:00 PM
11/11 – Los Angeles, CA – Wiltern Theatre – 06:00 PM
11/13 – Tempe, AZ – Marquee Theatre – 06:30 PM
11/15 – Dallas, TX – House of Blues Dallas – 06:30 PM
11/16 – Houston, TX – Warehouse Live – 07:00 PM
11/17 – Austin, TX – Waterloo Park – 05:00 PM
11/19 – Lake Buena Vista, FL – House of Blues – 06:30 PM
11/20 – Atlanta, GA – Tabernacle – 07:00 PM
11/21 – North Myrtle Beach, SC – House of Blues – 07:00 PM
11/23 – Winston-Salem, NC – Millennium Center – 07:00 PM
11/24 – Norfolk, VA – Norva – 07:00 PM
11/25 – Washington, DC – 9:30 Club – 07:00 PM
11/27 – Worcester, MA – Palladium – 06:00 PM
11/28 – Philadelphia, PA – Electric Factory – 07:00 PM

Zombi keyboardist/bassist Steve Moore brings solo debut to life via Relapse Records. Fans of Goblin, Tangerine Dream, Popul Vuh, Phillip Glass and (of course) Zombi rejoice, ask for more brains.

Zombi keyboardist/bassist Steve Moore brings solo debut to life via Relapse Records. Fans of Goblin, Tangerine Dream, Popul Vuh, Phillip Glass and (of course) Zombi rejoice, ask for “more brains.”

Steve Moore, best known for his work as one half of the sci-fi instrumental duo Zombi, has announced the forthcoming release of his first solo effort The Henge via extreme music label Relapse Records (Mastodon, Pig Destroyer, High On Fire.) In contrast to Zombi’s tightly structured nightmare epics, The Henge is a huge, sprawling, psychedelic symphonic affair. Over the course of its five tracks, the album treats listeners to a blissful dose of audio vertigo, by mixing vast ambient dronescapes and soaring beat driven melodies with Moore’s patented cinematic brand of keyboard virtuosity.

Relapse will issue The Henge in late October, a fitting choice for Moore’s horror-movie style songs. Moore describes his approach to the self-recorded album saying, “this album represents a turning point in my writing – a subtle shift in direction that is only apparent when considering the album as a whole. While no track is too far removed from the harmonic language I create through my work with Zombi, this album gives me a chance to expand my tonal palette by experimenting with different instrumentations.”

“The album is meant to be viewed as a small step in a new direction, exploring some of the more ambient, drone-oriented ideas I’ve written over the last couple years,” Moore explains. “Although I always enjoy collaborative writing, the challenge of single-handedly developing an idea from conception to completion can sometimes be an even more rewarding experience.”

In addition to his works with Zombi, Moore has also recorded material with Microwaves and Panthers, as well as been involved in a number of scores for independent horror movies including “The Redsin Tower” (a collaboration with Scott Hull of Pig Destroyer and Agoraphobic Nosebleed), “Horror Business”, “Murder-Set-Pieces” (as Zombi), “Home Sick” (as Zombi) and more.

That Moore (b. 1975) makes his home an hour north of NYC in the misty Hudson River Valley—just across from Washington Irving’s legendary Sleepy Hollow—seems maybe too coincidental. As one-half of Zombi, in which he plays synthesizer and bass guitar, the Pittsburgh native’s affinity for unsettling mood and motif is well-documented over the band’s two self-released EPs and three Relapse releases.

Zombi provided Moore with the chance to turn his blood-red obsession with U.S. and Italian horror films of the 1970s and 1980s into his own brand of cinema for the ears—preferably ones capped with headphones in a darkened room, black candles optional. Armed with a bank of analog equipment and with drummer A.E. Paterra aboard, Moore drew evenly from his years of university music study as well as cassette-tape pedagogy under horror-soundtrack composers John Carpenter, Fabio Frizzi and Goblin. Gradually, Moore’s infusion of Zombi’s music with progressive-rock elements reached an apex with the Cosmos album. Arrangements growing in scope and ambition, fusion-informed rhythmic complexity, and even the odd keyboard solo and anachronistic MIDI sequence recalled not only the mid-1980s AOR-prog of Rush, but also the works of Tangerine Dream and Jan Hammer.

More recently, Moore’s appreciation for 1970 and 80s AM gold—which runs far deeper than mere kitsch—has surfaced. To wit: the Italo-disco inflected “Sapphire,” named by Cybernetic Broadcasting System as one of the top 100 dance tracks, has been featured on the mix CDs Go Commando With James !@$%^ Friedman (on Defend Music, also featuring tracks by Annie, Bloc Party and The Knife), and Cosmo Galactic Prism, (Eskimo Recordings, also featuring Hawkwind, Bob James, Boards of Canada and Parliament.) As a sideman, Moore has played guitar with Red Sparowes on a recent US/Canada tour, and has contributed Hammond B-3 organ to the latest Panthers album.

Moore’s solo debut is a quantum leap toward Grand Unification among electronica fans, prog revivalists, post-metallers, and new-age audiophiles.

The Henge Tracklisting:

Release Date: October 30th, 2007

01. Introduction
02. Infinite Resignation
03. The Henge / Ascension
04. Dead Tide
05. Cepheid

Sweat and Metal

by Gena Perala

Nestled somewhere between a chicken slaughterhouse and the prostitution district, you will find “The Sweatshop”, a little indoor
skate park found in East Van. Maybe not the best neighborhood for a romantic stroll, or any kind of stroll really, but definitely a great neighborhood for live music, especially if that music is metal.

I walked into “The Sweatshop” (and indeed it is, dress lightly or bring a change of clothes) the first band already in full swing, boys
on skateboards already with their shirts off, and my friend handing me an ice cold beer, the night was off to a good start.

The bands were loud and entertaining. Playing their first show in over a year, Dove Hunter blessed us with some electrifying psychedelic rock. As good as they are instrumentally, they could use a singer, and of course some more live shows under their belt. The next band was Jakartah, named after a city in Indonesia with the most crime activity worldwide…however they are not criminals, they seem like pretty nice boys from nice homes who happen to play hardcore music. They didn’t rock my world but obviously they are rockin’ someone’s world…signed to Torque records after being together for only 10 months, set to release
their debut album in September and hit the road in October…they have been busy. Apparently they have quite the fan base as well, but you wouldn’t know it judging by the turn-out. I think Dove Hunter had the biggest draw and although the crowd was amped, it was meager. Promoting and drawing a crowd in Vancouver is a tricky thing, but that’s a whole other article. The last band was “A Thousand year Plan”, definitely the most hardcore of all the bands. The singer, donning a button up shirt and dirty blonde curls, looked more like a cherub than the lead singer of a metal band. That’s one thing I like best about this band. All three members are unassuming dudes but as soon as they hit the stage they rock-the-fuck-out! It was good to hear some serious heavy metal from a local group that is garnishing some serious respect from musicians and metal heads alike. If you’re into metal, keep an eye on “Dove Hunter” and definitely check out “A thousand year Plan”.

Come support your local bands & venues: Jakartah will be playing a few shows in Van, before they go on tour – check their myspace – A Thousand Year Plan – and Dove Hunter

For more info on “The Sweatshop”:

reviews tour dates

The Fucking Champs review

by Gena Perala

You have to have balls to call yourselves “The Fucking Champs”. I mean you better be able to bring the mother f***ing noise! This was my assumption stumbling down Granville Street to their Sep 7th show at the Plaza.

“They’re stoner metal… well, they’re not really metal”, “they’re rock…but not rock” were the vague, yet best descriptions my friends could give. I was already intrigued by the band name (you can’t beat it) so the fact that my “music head” friends couldn’t define this band had me sold.

Walking into the Plaza I ran into an old friend from Vancouver’s small punk scene, a local hipster, a few handlebar moustaches, some skaters, a western shirt, a “God is Great” shirt and thought…good crowd…this is going to be a good show (of course it had nothing to do with the shot of tequila a cute boy offered me…good crowd indeed).

“The Fucking Champs”, formerly “The Champs”, if you ask them why they changed their name their answer is “fuck you”…why question genius?!? came out riffs a’ blazing. Words that come to mind after seeing The Fucking Champs live are: Rock…not just rock, intelligent rock, often referred to as math rock, melodic patterns, burning riffs, tight as in together, and hard as in aggressive. This largely instrumental band, an occasional vocal was added for good measure, comprising of 2 lead guitars and a drummer create such a full sound, it’s nearly orchestral, (if that’s a word).

Their time changes are almost frustrating as you find yourself wanting to dance but not quite able to find the rhythm because once you’ve got it, they’ve seamlessly changed it again. I don’t know if that’s a plus or a negative, regardless The Fucking Champs are all about the music. There’s no stage show, no presence, no banter. They play hard, they play well and then everybody goes home. It’s unfortunate actually, because after reading their hate mail replies which can be found on their website (check it out) these are the kind of guys I would want to hang out with and get a little ummm…banter.

None the less, their complete lack of stage personality only adds to their charm. Confirms the fact that they are serious about music if nothing else. Did they bring the noise? Yes, in a much more mature way than I expected. The Fucking Champs latest album is VI their tour dates and hate mail can be found on their website