Typefighter - This is a local twin-guitar quartet that quickly jumps into the power pop realms. They have an awful lot of beard for this style, but fear not, the indie rock moves work their way in here, too. They have plenty of power, a touch of edge and are not going to blow you away with anything special. They do have some nifty guitar work underneath the vocals at time which is stands out. They heat up a stage well and have a good fun attitude, and you you do not need much more than that when you get rolling with a three-band bill.
Paws - This trio hails from Glasgow and hopefully is not mourning the Celtic loss this week. Of course it could be worse, they could be Rangers fans. And if I digress a bit much here, I do recall Mogwai coming out in Celtic jackets at a show here some years ago. But the music is what we are here to see and the band did a fantastic job on their first trip overseas on the beginning leg to their pilgrimage to SXSW. If you are there, they are at the Fatcat Records showcase, which should be excellent. Tonight's thirty minute set was tight and energetic. Their professionalism allowed them to survive a broken bass string and their musical creativity had my brain working overtime. I heard elements of Nirvana, Husker Du, and other punk-to-pop/rock bands in their music. But as I listened more, it was more of how those 80s and 90s bands dug into their own roots as well. So basically, Paws are continuing a fine tradition of rocking hard with loads of tempo, while finding the pop hooks underneath great music. They even add a touch of shoegaze blasts in instrumental sections, so they pull from everywhere yet still manage a personal cohesive sound. This was a crafty and highly enjoyable set that went over well with the crowd of about 50 or so.
Single Mothers - This punk band is from London, Ontario and added even more diversity tonight, both geographic and sonic. They have a melodic early LA punk sound with a bit of New Model Army depth and plenty of bratty singalong vocals. The guitar work is interesting and keeps things stimulating. But if you want to just cut loose with their energetic playing and movement, that was easy enough to do as well. And it was an energized crowd tonight for all of the bands, which obviously helped make everything fun. They did not do quite enough to get me out in front of the stage like the old days, but their 26 minute set did rekindle some fond memories of the mature punk scene of the early 1980s.
Quote of the Night: An actual lol exchange (rare for me) from Typefighter with some energetic dancers up front...
"You guys are awesome!"
"We're gonna start a band just like you guys! You'll see."
"You guys are gonna suck."