It was a beautiful autumn evening in Montreal. It is hard to believe the weather has cooled down already considering it is still August. After a long day’s work, I met up with Varv and we headed to Casa Del Popolo, a venue I haven’t been to since seeing Holograms two years ago. We arrived fairly early, to an empty venue. I was told by Forgotten Fix’s vocalist, Rob, that the show would start in about an hour.
First band up was Ottawa’s The Heavy Medicine Band. The crowd was at a reasonable amount. I was blinded by the beauty of vocalist Keturah. The first comparisons that came to mind were Mazzy Star and Fiona Apple. Yeah, maybe I am stuck in the 90s, but her voice was absolutely beautiful. Just to throw it out there, I also found she looked a little like Juliette Lewis. Anyway, back to the music. This is a band I would have preferred to watch in a lounge or divey bar. I was uncomfortable standing the whole time. Their tracks were relaxing, “chanty” and folky – a band I’d prefer listening to while kicked back on a couch with a whiskey, fully able to absorb the music. The Heavy Medicine Band mentioned they have only been together for a year and it was their first time playing Montreal. It was hard to believe because they had fantastic chemistry on stage. Keturah was a great front-woman. She gracefully introduced the whole band to us, as well as the tracks. She had great chemistry with the crowd, though, unfortunately, the crowd seemed sort of statuesque with staring eyes, giving off not much reaction in return. Perhaps they were blinded by her beauty? Who knows. Track of choice performance for me was “Jesus Juice”. It was a fast-paced rock n’ roll track, more upbeat compared to the others. Unfortunately this band does not seem to have any music online to sample, but keep an eye out on their Facebook page.
Between bands, we headed outside for a breather. Heartcopy were on ten minutes later. We ran inside to a high energy band on stage. We were completely blown away. They had synths, keys, bass, guitar and two vocalists, male and female. Being a huge synth/keys lover, I totally dug this interesting performance. Wynn was astonishing on stage; she felt the music and danced her heart out, all while singing and jamming on her synths. Her voice was soft and feminine. She held her notes beautifully and her overall presence on stage was mesmerizing. “The Way We Crave” and “No Signal” are by far my favourite tracks, both recorded and live. When “No Signal” gets heavier, the energy these guys gave out made my heart stop. All the tracks were performed perfectly. I probably could have watched this band for another hour. I was happy a high energy band took the stage, though, again, the crowd had no reaction apart from this one chick standing on the back side who was cheering and clapping during the performance. The reaction between songs, however, proved how much this band was kicking ass; there were lots of cheers and claps. They had killer synths and beats, and they were dancing all over the tiny stage. It was mentioned how the band began as a duo with Wynn and her back up vocalist – the muscular tanned tattooed man dancing his heart out on the right of the stage. He worked well as a back-up, but when he sang solo he was off key quite a bit. When Wynn joined in, their voices balanced out perfectly. Listen to the self titled album here. In addition, they were giving away free pins and a song, which was a cute gesture.
The last band of the night was Forgotten Fix, who were celebrating the release of their new EP Sans Bateau. Rob seemed a little nervous on stage, but he covered it up by making hilarious jokes while fixing some technical guitar pedal issues. I had listened to the EP beforehand and felt it had a Talking Heads feel to it. I was looking forward to seeing the music live for this one. Rob’s vocals were hardly heard at first during “Self Entitled”, but I could hear him better as he sang more of the deeper vocals. Maybe it was because we had just seen Heartcopy, but I felt the band did not give as much energy on stage. They stood in the same spots without much movement. During this track especially I would have liked to see more. While the music is decent, I feel Rob needs a bit of work on his vocals. He sounds great when he hits the higher pitched notes, but as he goes a little deeper, there were moments where he sounded slightly off key. I couldn’t tell if it was done on purpose. I was impressed by Karl’s swappage of bass to keys. The music was played well. I think I would enjoy these guys more if their music was only instrumental, and if they were able to give off slightly more energy on stage.