The Beaches made their yearly return to Montreal Thursday night at Theatre Corona on the heels of their latest EP The Professional. Deemed “The Professional Tour” – a tongue in cheek play off of the Beaches incessant care free anything can happen rock and roll attitude; safe to say professionalism was the last thing the Beaches had in mind.
Last tour the Beaches came to town with Goodbye Honolulu (back again you’ll hear about them later) a band that went to the same high school as them near Toronto, Ontario. I’m not sure what they feed the kids in that school cafeteria but they did it again this tour, bringing another band from the exact same high school called Fade Awaays. The latest product of this rock and roll spawning is just rounding into form but have all the tension and swagger of a classic rock ensemble. Their angular punk rock turned to alt riffs, carry the same weight as the Strokes or Arctic Monkeys. Just listen to their lead single “She Don’t Know Why.” Singer/guitarist Reid MacMaster sort of hangs back and lets his lyrics do most of the talking, nothing wrong with that when the music’s so in your face and the vocals sting like a punch from Muhhamed Ali.
Goodbye Honolulu know how to have a good time, you can tell just by the way they take the stage. Jacob, Fox and Emmett (who all share vocals and guitar playing duties) present themselves as if to say, were here to have a good time and we don’t give two fucks if you do or don’t. As far as sound, Goodbye Honolulu have taken things more towards an 80’s vibe since their last visit, introducing some more synths and substituting some of the power rock for some pop quirkiness as evident on their latest release “U Got It.” Sippin’ drinks and singing happy birthday to friends in the crowd, Goodbye Honolulu were vibing, not shying away from their aggressive side either leaning into “Lorry Can’t Love” from 2018’s More Honey. Would love to see these guys come back to Montreal soon, hopefully outside the shadow of the Beaches.
The Beaches (Toronto, ON) took the stage to the tune of Avril Lavigne’s “Sk8er Boi,” a song they had covered last time in Montreal, now hung up in the rafters like a retired jersey. Always about busting out an interesting cover, this tour the Beaches did “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” by Kylie Minogue and it seemed effortless and so in line with what the Beaches are all about. Guitarist/keyboardist Leandra Earl ripped off some high leg kicks as per usual as singer/bassist Jordan Miller twirled around stage in a blissful state of rock and roll exuberance.
The Beaches hit every song from The Professional EP, but striking the hardest on the set opener “Snake Tongue,” lead single “Fascination” and a song I had somehow slept on “Desdemona,” which absolutely rips with its disco floor drum beat, astringent power riffs and cool and collected lyrics about a femme fatale classic rock character, “High voltage rock and roller, Nobody can control her, And when you start to bore her, She gets lost.” The Beaches did a commendable, dare I say professional job mixing in the new jams with staples from 2017’s Late Show “Gold,” “Money” and “T-Shirt” during the encore, which all has me feeling that this band can legit do no wrong. They’ll be back so fucking soon too! Playing CHOM’s International Women’s Day on March 8th at CHOM, you best make yourself present.
Written by Lee Ferguson
Photography by Nicolas Racine
*Edited by Dominic Abate