Thursday, 8 August 2013

Continental Train Wreck July 2013

Continental Train Wreck + Mary  |  Casa Del Popolo


One thing I have noticed about shows at Casa Del Popolo is that their events always seem to start quite a bit later than most of the places I’ve been in the city of Montreal. In this case, I ended up coming to the venue around 9:30. I even took my time getting there, as I stopped by and window shopped at a few of the record stores along the way there from Station Mont-Royal. Nevertheless, I wound up getting there a good hour and a half before the show started. After some awkward conversation with the bartender while asking for a pint of Cheval Blanc (a truly great beer from this fine province - more places in the city, and the country as a whole, should carry it), I walked around the venue space for a while and read the wall’s show posters.  I eventually tired of that, and ended up sitting at the table and caught up with the news on an app on my phone. I’m sure the people at most of the places I go see shows at think I’m some weird Unabomber type due to me not really talking to anyone, but I don’t let that get to me too much. Mary opened the night.

Mary are a local group, and they have to have the most Google-unfriendly band name in existence. Nevertheless, that is their name, as I asked one of the members to clarify and even to spell it: he replied it was “Mary. M-A-R-Y.” I still can’t find their music online. They might as well have called their band “Facebook” or “Netflix” or something. At least their music is good, and they brought a crowd with them. They’re young, their fans are young, and they have reverby guitars. They’ve got some synthesizers, and they can really groove to the max. The vocals sound a bit shaky at times with the pitch but the young man can belt out a tune without any problems. The band is solid. They remind me of New Order at times, although they often use louder guitars than New Order ever did. I liked it. The rhythms they play are electronic inspired and suitable for dancing - which their fans did. A young, talented, and promising new band. 

Intercontinental Train Wreck are another group of locals, and they are a two piece. Just a bassist and a singing drummer. I was particularly taken by the bassist’s rig, as he sports one of the few Alesis Midiverbs I’ve seen around, and probably the only one thus far I have seen that’s been put to use in somebody’s live effects rack. I used to play with a guitarist that had one in his recording setup. Either way, it’s a powerful reverb effects unit that has not been manufactured in some time. There were quite a few effects on display on the bassist’s pedal board, although he told me that he was actually rebuilding his set-up as he had fairly recently had his entire pedal board stolen. That struck my heart with a great sadness. As far as the music goes, there is a large Tool influence in there (the bass often quite captures a similar feeling to a lot of Tool’s basslines). Lots of psychedelic delay effects. Their set was like fried peanut butter and banana sandwiches. They also utilized lighting in an interesting way, in that they brought some of their own, rather bright, lights and shined them on themselves from the front of the stage facing up. It created these large shadows of themselves on the ceiling of the venue, it’s a cool, sinister effect. 

All in all, it was a fine night. People were hitting the sauce, and they were having a good time. They danced if they wanted to, and they left their friends behind if the option was there. I was rather impressed with Mary. Despite the unsearchable name and some rough edges, this new band is well worth checking out. They’re new, they’re funky, and you should go see them if they’re playing anywhere. Perhaps you should let me or the rest of the Soupe Kitchen clan know if you have accomplished the impossible and have found their bandcamp or whatever.

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