Grey blankets on the ground
Sandwiched under by navy
Sit and watch the silence
Watch it, till it’s pierced
By a single long beep,
As the grey turns to white
And the navy to bright,
And as the soft white underneath
Is tiled by a tarmac sheet
With a beep beep bleep,
The day has begun.
Canadian alt-rock band Goodbye Honolulu live at the Mansion, Kingston. Supports: Figure-8 and Fade Awaays.
Rock music lives in its clubs, bars and taverns. Anyone who has been to an “underground” gig can attest to that. There’s something about having a few hundred people tapping their feet to gravelling distorted sounds originating from an amplifier helped by a microphone, sounds that a little bar couldn’t possibly contain for any longer than an album or two; something about the dim, neon lights and black ceilings and dark walls; something about being so close to the ones trying to explain the inner workings of their minds on a little raised platform we call the stage, as they belt their hearts out, vocally, instrumentally; expressively. To anyone decrying the death and decline of rock music, a peek into its true dwellings would prove educational.
On Thursday, 24th October, Toronto-based alt rock band Goodbye Honolulu decided to give a demonstration worthy of representing the 2019 rock music scene as they opened their Fall 2019 tour at the Mansion in Kingston, ON.
They were joined in their endeavour by Gananoque punk rockers Figure-8, who opened the gig with a burst of energy, rocking out to a sum total of ten people as the sparse crowd got moving to fast paced, upbeat songs about growing up, tinged with a hint of Green Day’s 1994 hit Dookie.
Following them were fellow Toronto indie rockers Fade Awaays, a band with a sound bigger than the venue they filled tonight, with a tight, layered wall of sound emanating from the two guitars on-stage, occasionally doubling the rhythm section to form a formidable wall of sound. (For a band that only released their first EP this January, they have some surprisingly heavy weight behind them, having opened for alt rockstars Wolf Alice and up-and-coming Canadian rockers the Beaches.)
Goodbye Honolulu, who had been in the crowd for most of their supports’ sets, came on stage to a well warmed and receptive audience. This band packs fully formed chord progressions and rock riffs into a neat, loud singable pop package that makes their songs so memorable. Their on-stage personality is dynamic, and guitars and basses are frequently swapped onstage as they rip through their long setlist.
Tonight, the band gave the crowd many songs off their yet-unreleased album, a little dose of their own political opinions, in light of Canada’s just concluded federal election (“fuck Andrew Scheer! Fuck Andrew Scheer!”), many little exchanges with the audience, and on popular demand, crowd favourite single “Typical”.
I saw Goodbye Honolulu live at the Phoenix Concert Theatre in Toronto six months ago supporting Californian punk rockers SWMRS, and had thought them to be a very well organised act. This time around, in, if possible, an even more intimate setting than Toronto’s iconic club venue, the band let loose the raw energy of a band rearing to take on the notions of what it means to be a rock band as they embark on their latest tour.
Find all three bands on their respective websites (or better yet, at a North American live venue near you!)
It’s been raining all day. After a pretty uncharacteristically and suspiciously sunny Tuesday, the skies have shown their true colours today: grey.
I don’t know if we should be worried about incoming alien attacks in the near future, because that right there is the clouds having basically eaten the CN tower.
I don’t know of an attack on anything more Canadian than that.
Except maybe the winter and poutine. (But you’re expected to eat that, aren’t you? Yes, well, you’re right, not me, but other people in general.)
I don’t know really. Maybe I’ll be that person who teams up with the aliens just because they seem cool. At any rate, I’m not particularly worried about an alien attack. (No, it’s not true that I’ve been preparing for one for years, what gives you that impression?)
I’m just honestly kind of pleased with the picture. The tree provides a nice frame in a contrasting colour that would make design rule purists real happy. That frame is also the only way you’d know what actually the subject of my photograph is!
If you do really want to see a jaded, cloudy CN tower though, I may have a little something for you.
There. Now can we get a smile on this gloomy day already?
Still can’t wait for this week to end, because I’m going home!