The Truth About Billy

And Barc Project horror stories

You haven’t lived until you’ve heard “The Immigrant Song” played by a bunch of kids. Last Friday I watched tiny school children from a band called The Penguins cover songs ranging from Pink Floyd to The Darkness, and it was awesome. Sure they are cute and all, but these kids know how to play their instruments. It’s not easy to follow the Penguins, but The Cinch nevertheless performed an energetic and entertaining set of songs from their latest disc. And The Evaporators put on a crazy spectacle as usual. Luckily, not a single Penguin was harmed during Nardwuar’s crowd dive.
The next day I was at Julie Doiron. I am fortunate enough to have gotten to know Julie over the years, and talking to her is always a big thrill. Both Ken from Radiogram and I noticed that our coolness factor increased exponentially after hanging out with her. “Oh wow, you know Julie Doiron?” people will question. As expected, Julie’s performance was stellar and the crowd couldn’t be more attentive. She was swarmed by adorers after the set and sold all her merch in what seemed like seconds. Funny ‘cause before the show she was worried that no one would buy anything.

I’m pretty clueless. For the longest time I thought Billy Talent was the name of a real person, but as it turns out it’s a name stolen from Hard Core Logo, and no one in the band is actually named Billy, or arguably, has talent. They are in town with Metric and Death From Above 1979, two bands more worthy of your attention, at the Commodore on Friday. If you can’t get into that, you can try your luck with The WPP/Foster Kare/Cabin Fever at the Asbalt. But didn’t WPP break up after losing their bassist you ask? Well, the rest of the band has decided to continue on after much deliberation. For this show, Tom from Attack Machine will pinch-hit on bass. This is going to be WPP’s album release party, and the band promised that the CDs will be dirt cheap. Those are not the only options however, there’s The End/Savannah/ Goatsblood at the Brickyard if you want it loud, Automatic Fancy/ Feminists/Philharmonic at the Lamplighter if you want it catchy, and Rheostatics/Buttless Chaps at the Media Club if you want it distinctly Canadian.

Saturday night, the Rheostatics will still be at the Media Club, and of course there’s Interpol, though that’s been sold out for weeks—no worries since there’s a lot else you can do. Fireball Productions is bringing metal acts Soulscar/Omega Crom to the Brickyard and Toronto’s Staggered Crossing to the Pic (and thank god Steve is back booking the Pic, as I’ve heard nothing but horror stories from bands dealing with the BARC Project, i.e. some were unknowingly paying for dancers and being charged for flyers that obviously weren’t being distributed). Frank Rumbletone has Groovie Ghoulies/Jackass/Ladies Night at the Waldorf, while Bullbucker/Bacon are at the Marine Club, and at Pat’s there’s Portland’s no wave heros Glass Candy and the Shattered Theatre with Channels 2 & 3, and Zeus.

The Media Club has been getting a lot of higher profile shows recently, and that trend continues with Ben Lee on Sunday—the guy was dumped by Claire Danes a while back, so I wonder if his songs will still be as sunny and campy. On the same night you can also see The Cinch/Gangbang/ Explaining Colours to the Blind at an all-ages Video-In Studios show. And Spearhead has two shows at the Commodore on Wednesday and Thursday, if that’s your kind of thing.

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