TALES OF DAMO, DAVID AND DEREK
A few years ago, I saw David Byrne in Montreal, and told myself beforehand: "If you're expecting a Talking Heads gig, you'll be dissapointed, so have an open mind."
Similarly, tonight I took the same approach at Lee's Palace with Damo Suzuki and members of Broken Social Scene, Lenin I Shumov and Do Make Say Think. I couldn't go into it with the idea that I was seeing a Can show. I was born far too late to enjoy Can live, but hey, the best part about Damo Suzuki is that when he goes from town to town, he plays a completely improvised set with a cast of fantastic local musicians. Every night must therefore be something totally new, and while his supporting bands come into the show in a more Canny state of mind, they're bound to break the chains and work some magic for an hour or so.
Damo has played Toronto before, about two years ago, with Johnny Dovercourt, Rob Gordon and Steve Kado making up parts of his improv band. Tonight, he had a slightly older band behind him, but the energy was quite fierce throughout and the music thoroughy challenging. Justin Peroff took the lead on drums with blasts and clangs, while Eugene Slonimerov kronked away on an incomprehensibly detuned guitar and Charles Spearin got creative with his trumpet, using a pint glass as a stop. Damo sings as youthfully as he did on those Can records. He can go on forever it seems with his on the spot story telling. It was great salvia comedown music, perfect for a quiet Sunday night after a weekend of pan-city music fever.
But I must say, this show came nowhere near to trumping Saturday night's Trinport show featuring an EP release party for The Creeping Nobodies. No Dynamics opened the show to an already packed house, playing a short but killer set that allowed us to enjoy them not just viscerally, but musically.
Meanwhile, The Nobodies are growing tighter and more entertaining to watch. While Derek has always been a charismatic performer, only recently had his fellow Creeps come out of their shells live. Sarah Richardson, usually the shy one who keeps to herself on keys, had some prime moments on vocals that did not go to waste, despite the difficulty in hearing her voice over the speakers. The vocal arrangements amongst the four mouths of the band was shockingly good from song to song. Never have shouts and hollers been so well thought out in this city.
But the highlight of the show was earlier in the set, when Derek let go of his inhibitions and pogoed through the crowd, laughing across a chorus in a sinister moment of ghastliness that bode well with the band's shadowy intensity. I'm not sure if these guys and girls are aware of how intelligent and sexy they are in their black dress and entranced expressions, but some serious brain-boners were had by many in the basement known as Club Trinport.
Their new vinyl-only EP, Half Saboteur is out on Rob Gordon's Bloodworks label, and here is a track off their site, as well as a tune from a forthcoming album...
THE CREEPING NOBODIES - Your Likeness
THE CREEPING NOBODIES - Treachery
Tune in this Friday at noon ET on CIUT for an interview with Derek conducted by our good friend Gabe Knox.
Of course, we musn't forget Old Time Relijun's headlining spot. It's rare that band with a sax and double bass can be so punky and spastic. Uz Jsme Doma and Shellac come to mind, but comparing them to those bands only diminishes their originality.
OLD TIME RELIJUN - Wolves and Wolverines
OLD TIME RELIJUN - Your Mama Used to Dance
OLD TIME RELIJUN - Tigers in the Temple
What a fucking unbelievable show it was. It gave us a good shake-up and such a thing only inspires more unforgettable live music in the almost never-ending story of what they like to call Torontopia.
ESB PLAYLIST 10/14/05
WE ARE WOLVES - T.R.O.U.B.L.E.
LESBIANS ON ECSTACY - Pleasure Principle (One Speed Bike Remix)
NO DYNAMICS - I've Got You On My Mind
OLD TIME RELIGION - Tigers in the Temple
OLD TIME RELIGION - Your Mama Used to Dance
THE CREEPING NOBODIES - Second Occupation
THE CREEPING NOBODIES - Treachery
DEERHOOF - Rrrrrrright
DEERHOOF - Odyessey
DEERHOOF - You Can See
THE GO TEAM - Hold Yr. Terror Close
THE STROKES ft. REGINA SPEKTOR - Post-Modern Girls
THE OCTOPUS PROJECT - Music is Happiness
DUNGEN - Ta Det Lugnt