Last night I got to see a band with a few friends play for the first time. They’ve been together a few years now… and playing a few shows. That coincides with the shitty reno time-frame and is why it’s my first time seeing them.
Derek, Mondo, and Minesh have played together on and off for 20 years.. starting in the 90s with Parts Unknown, then Minesh and Derek in the Creeping Nobodies, now all of them together again in Secret Wars. This is pre-Torontopia music history. Minesh (now only) and Derek have been involved together in No Beat Radio for a long time, and Derek was involved in the early years of Wavelength. Together they’ve had a greater impact than many in building a groundwork for indie musicians in Toronto over the years.
All that context is just a way of saying that some things feel right. The way Mondo plays a simple repetitive bass-line and Derek chants lyrics about mathematical equations and who knows what – while he and Minesh lay down as many contrasting spacey and post-punk riffs as they can just works for me. It’s not self-conscious. It’s one of those things that’s hard to explain, but getting to see friends performing together and it being so natural, just made me happy. Of course, it could also have been the booze.
There were other bands on the bill: First Base – who were a bit more boring than they sounded on bandcamp, and Catl – who I hadn’t seen since the early 3-piece days. Their touring has seriously changed their performance for the better. We didn’t stay for Danny Laj & the Looks.
I also ran into another friend from way back – Andrew, former guitarist of More Plastic (and other bands I never saw). We hadn’t really seen each other for a few years, because he (and his family) went to Vietnam to teach English. A lot of nostalgia, but genuine happiness at seeing someone you know. It’s weird to think about how isolated I’ve been for the past few years.