Beer, an alley way and a makeshift stage, can you think of a better way to spend the afternoon? Maybe add in some of Toronto’s best talent and one of Canada’s staple bands, Hollerado. After headlining the Indie’s Wednesday, the band gave Toronto more by headlining a secret show.
Pony began the afternoon with a set that gave the audience an intimate look at the band’s quirky charm.
Up next, Little Junior brought forth a set full of energy and choreographed guitar gimmicks. They didn’t forget to dedicate every song to the haters.
The band of the hour took the stage at five and played a wildly intimate show. Not bothering with a set list, they played old and new and even took suggestions from the audience. Ending the day full of bubbles, candy and a personal hang with bands, the secret party wasn’t one to miss.
In the wake of 2017, Toronto band Little Junior get stripped down, spray painted and just the right amount of cheesy for their upcoming album, Hi. Currently on tour with July Talk, seeing the boys off stage is a rarity. Take an exclusive behind the scenes look at what went down at their photoshoot.
Bubbles rain down on the crowd, the stage. The floor is slippery from the residue. Red, white, and black balloons are tossed around in the crowd, settling on stage. The room is still buzzing from Little Juniors performance earlier on and their too perfect cover of Teenage Dirtbag. Even they’ve taken their places amid the crowd to watch the band of the evening.
Casper Skulls take their places a proud excitement on each of their faces, pausing only to throw some of the balloons back out at the crowd.
I’ve seen this band more times than I can remember, on every stage from Lee’s to The Danforth. No matter how many times you see them, they never fail to disappoint. Now finally, it’s their moment. At their sold-out Toronto EP release party Casper Skulls shine. The crowd at The Baby G is already jumping and screaming, the first note hasn’t been played.
They begin with Devotion, one of the strongest tracks on the EP, and the excitement in the room pulses. Bubbles still fall, it’s too packed to see who’s blowing them. Balloons are being thrown as a mosh pit breaks out. Someone goes up in the air, the first crowd surfer of the evening. Not before, two, three more people go up, riding the crowd’s excitement at the same time. Never pausing the band rolls into each track smoothly, precisely, never losing energy, and never producing anything but a perfect performance.
Check out more photos from the show below.
The Silver Dollar is all black, still hot and sweaty despite the modest crowd. The few scattered in the room all stare at the stage that is dressed in blue, green and that overpowering dingy red. Three stick out of the crowd as they watch each opening band with smiles. The different tones of each band don’t deflect their dancing or the vibe until the lights dim one last time before the headliner.Shopping, Rachel Aggs (guitar), Billy Easter (bass) and Andrew Milk (drums) abandon the stage front and take their turn in front of the room.
They strap on their instruments, the crowd gathers, the room fills and chants of “Let’s go Shopping” are called to the trio.
Quick, smart and a perfect melding of punk and politics, Shopping doesn’t disappoint live. Their fast tongue’s and clever lyrics translate as ‘lead’ of the band is passed among each member. Each song bleeds into another as the energy rises, the crowd breaks into dancing, the band laughs to one another on stage. Stopping rarely to take a breath, they gaze at the mesmerized crowd and pleasure of knowing that the audience is fully submerged in their sound.
If you haven’t yet heard the trio from the UK, do yourself a favour and download their latest release, Why Choose.
Check out more photos of the show below!
There something about a sticky floor, over-stuffed venue and a lack of air circulation that makes a show more thrilling. The blackened stage lacks fancy lighting,decor or anything personal about the band playing. Their name may not be known to anyone not inside the venue, but that’s not what matters. Tonight, they’re owning the stage and without the gimmicks, they make the audience dance, sweat, and gasp for breath. They play covered in sweat, losing themselves in the moment, and hoping to take as many as they can with them. Welcome to the Toronto Underground. Discover 416 is a series of shows throughout the city that showcases the best Underground music around. The latest show took place at The Garrison and showcased some must see bands and best new discoveries.
Dirty Frigs: You can’t live in the underground without knowing their name. From Toronto, the band is sin dipped in darkness.Their music is hypnotizing on it’s own, though, watching them live is an experience you shouldn’t miss. Known for their dark aura, gritty rock & roll and show stopping performances, Dirty Frigs are on the slow climb up.
Jaunt – Formed by a few members you may recognize from other projects in the city, Jaunt is a mellow sound of different genres and elements that shouldn’t go together, yet fit quite well.
Little Junior – A throwback to one of the first bands I’ve ever shot, Little Junior is quite an act to see. With a purple-hair lead, and whole lot of screaming, they’re a punk-pop band comparable to the greats like Fidlar. They don’t galavant on stage trying to be that hardcore band, instead they take you into one of their jam sessions where you can’t help but fall in love with them along with their sound.
Walrus– The hidden gem of the evening that demanded attention. Beginning their set like any true rock stars, by setting down beers and taking their places in front of the dwindling crowd. Standing on stage, the randomness of them was enticing enough to draw the crowd forward. Walrus, takes a step back in time to play psychedelic rock with a maturity and perfection you wouldn’t quite expect from them.
Shy Kids – A phenomenal dynamic between the two leads. They don’t fit into any category or genre. They make music with a meaning behind it, they don’t just play. They’re a band that truly connects with their music through and through.
All different, all up and coming, all can’t miss musicians that can turn the smallest shows into the most memorable.
* Photos by the lovely, Shahnoor Ijaz*