With the holidays in full swing, the only things spreading faster than Christmas cheer are the seasonal illnesses. Everyone has had their experience being sick over the holidays and Josh Gottlieb, the frontman of Newmarket punk outfit Letterbomb, was no different. He began the set by telling everyone he had thrown up and it wasn’t the good kind that came from imbibing in too many brown sodas. So, like the polite man that he is, he was donning a rather large bucket on stage just in case there was a resurgence.
Luckily, we were spared.
It was barely visible to the crowd that Josh was suffering, however. The way this hardcore band plays their set, they don’t allow much room to catch your breath. Every
song is a high speed punch to the face and they play back to back with hardly time to applaud between. Guitarist Mark Colangelo shreds riffs that border metal at times as drummer Capo keeps perfect time with that trademark smile on his face. Bassist Fraser Gottlieb keeps the energy up, always bobbing his head and exploring the space while yelling the backing vocals, and similar to his brother Josh, he uses every inch of stage space available to him.
The crowd was warmed up from an awesome performance by Newmarket’s Holy Mind Funk. Their groovy, rock ‘n’ roll, trippy riffs led the way for Toronto pop-punkers The Sole Pursuit, then followed by power-pop band Bare Claws of Newmarket.
Letterbomb opened the set with my personal favourite “Running” from their self-titled 2012 release. They ran through most of their recorded material and even played a couple of new ones, including a unique and goosebump-inducing rendition of “On the Outside” by No Use For A Name. Before playing “Still Breathing,” Josh chided that he hoped he’d still be breathing afterwards. They closed with “Of You” from their 2010 release Everything Changes. All of Letterbomb’s music is available on Bandcamp.
The hardcore punk quartet has been playing together since late 2009, but all four members have been well-known in the local music scene for almost a decade, having played in multiple different bands. Letterbomb has had the opportunity to play with bands like The Flatliners, Junior Battles, and Dig It Up, amongst more. The band continues to ‘wow the crowd’ during every performance, making them a staple to see at any show.
Written by Jarod Semple
Photography by Sarah Semple
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