reviewed by Michael
Last Friday (October 22) at the Piston in Toronto, three local bands played a pretty great show. The occasion was the release of Dora Alexander’s Travelers EP which was reviewed well not only on our site, but also on other bigger sources like NOW Magazine.
I was very much looking forward to the show as opening for Dora Alexander was Volcano Playground, who I’ve seen once before, and Bravestation, who put out their insanely awesome 2010 EP a few months ago.
The big difference between my last visit to the Krupke and this one was the amount of people present. While the last show was pretty sparse (I blame the Arcade Fire concert happening on the same day), this one was packed to the brim, no doubt due to the great lineup.
Opening the show was Volcano Playground. As I described in my review of the Krupke show a few months ago, Volcano Playground are a band that obviously takes a great amount of care with their music. It always sounds like the result of an intense labour of love, and the band didn’t disappoint.
Once again, the drummer and electronics programmer got super into this music, and the guitarists and bassists complemented each other well. However, I found the guitarist who didn’t contribute vocals turned his back to the audience a few times, either out of nervousness or something else, I don’t know.
Besides the few instances of mic feedback, the band played a really great opening set. At the end of the set, the two vocalists on the forefront sang together, and their voices in harmony actually gave me chills. The only complaint I could make here was that a crowd of obviously the band’s friends were up in front dancing ridiculously. They tended to distract from the great music happening on stage.
Next up was Bravestation, a band mentioned several times on this blog already, so I don’t think I need to talk about why they’re a great band. It took a little while for them to get started, and for the first few songs I could sense that they were a little unsteady due to their worries about their instruments. But that didn’t seem to matter as Bravestation’s diehard fan appeared to be in full force.
Through every song Bravestation played you could hear the audience singing along to every word. The most magical moment was when, during one of their older songs, lead vocalist Devin Wilson turned the mic over to the crowd, and they sang correctly the vocals right back.
Bravestation (as far as I remember) sang every song from their 2010 EP and even I found myself singing along with their really catchy songs.
Finally, Dora Alexander took the stage, beginning fittingly with the first song of their EP, “Beginning to End.” The quieter vocals fell through a little, but the band seemed like they were having fun and were playing their multiple parts quite well.
Due to time contstraints, I had to leave a little early. But when the band finished “Marlboro Friday,” they were totally in their element, and the crowd was cheering and clapping a lot more. It was also in that very song when I finally understood the reason they were compared to Radiohead.
It’s obvious that all three bands have really bright futures in store for them, as cheesy as that sounds. I haven’t seen such enthusiasm for bands since I went to see a concert at the Molson Amphitheatre.