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L.A. Beat

Rocktoberfest a big success

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It was a “mammoth” week for rock and roll and garage punk at Henotic  this week thanks to Paul Lawton, who brought in bands from all over the country as well as  a lot of local bands for four days of loud,  rambunctious and in many cases synth- powered rock and roll.Toronto  punk band DCT got a little crazy. Photo By Richard Amery
Rocktoberfest started off Oct. 14 with  approximately 40 people having a blast.
 Local blues duo the Smoke Stack Jacks had the GCBC Lounge hopping with frenetic blues influenced rock which had an enthusiastic audience bouncing. They will be back with the Pack AD, Amelia Earhart (who also had an excellent Rocktoberfest set, Oct. 16) and Austria, Nov. 10.
 After that a unique Vancouver trio called Fox Opera performed some wild jazz influenced original music featuring some intricate bass lines and some weird guitar sounds which appealed to the audience.
 I also caught a couple songs from a new musical collective called  Skull Train to Hell Town which included members of the Creationists and the New Danger Kids, who, dressed in gold lamée tights and disco era polyester, had an array of computerized sounds powering strong dance and R and B influenced music.
On Oct. 16, Rocktoberfest featured some wild  punk  bands. Namely Calgary’s The Ex-Boyfriends who brought back the crazed spirit of Iggy and the Stooges, they played with reckless abandon.

You Say Party, We Say Die bassist/ keyboardist Stephen O'Shea. Photo By Richard AmeryThe singer Djewel Davidson, sounded a little like the Who’s Roger Daltrey was a sight as he prowled around the stage, his pants slipping down, slunk though the crowd and rolled down Henotic’s spiral staircase, all the while backed by a muscular punk sound  full of big riffs, screeching solos and heaps of energy. The vocals were cut off  for the band’s last song which was  probably their coolest one thanks to some big riffs. Drummer Dean Martin finished the set by doing his best Keith Moon impression and knocking over his kit.Ex-Boyfriends’ drummer Dean Martin knocks down his kit during Rocktoberfest. Photo by Richard Amery
 You Say Party We Say Die were also impressive with a  more early 80’s Vancouver new wave sound featuring a lot of keyboards and some pretty melodies which had the crowd dancing in front of the stage. It was a little too much keyboards for me but they put on a solid set which had the 70-some strong crowd entertained.
Rocktoberfest rocked to a close, Oct. 17 beginning with a solid set by local trio Chief Mountain who did an excellent job. Another local trio, the Moby Dicks, stole the crowd’s hearts and dance moves not to mention the Ramones’  three chord punk template and weird sense of humour.
I was very impressed with Toronto punks DCT who dealt an aural bludgeoning and another flamboyant/ crazed lead singer who rolled and writhed all over the floor among the crowd, bellowing his head off.  A couple of their highlights were “White Gloves” and “Termination List.” They played as tight as can be and brought punk back to its Black Flag/Ramones roots.
One more highlight was a new “supergroup”  out of Calgary called the Dream Dates who played a solid set of inspired punk with a few keyboard sounds thrown in for variety.
Another cool band I enjoyed at Rocktoberfest were the Sub Linguals from Calgary who tore off a few ears, kicked  some butt and took some names with organ screeching powered garage punk. The band members writhed among the crowd surrounding the GCBC stage.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 21 October 2009 14:56 )  
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