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Perms - Lyve on Whyte
Line up: Whitemud, The Perms, Flash Lightnin
Venue: Lyve on Whyte; Edmonton, Alberta
Date: October 13, 2010
Whitemud Line-up: (rock, grunge, hard rock) Edmonton
Todd Moffatt – Lead Singer
Shawn Michaud – Lead Guitar/Vocals
Tyler Wyatt – Bass
Gary Ohrn (G-Note) - Drums
The Perms Line-up: (alternative rock) Winnipeg
Shane Smith – Bass Guitar/ Vocals
Chad Smith – Lead Guitar/Vocals
John Huver - Drums
Flash Lightnin Line-up: (Rock) Toronto
Rich Knox – Drums / Backing Vocals
Darcy Yates – Bass Guitar/ Backing Vocals
Darren Glover – Lead Guitar/Vocals
I’ve been feeling a little low since moving all the way from Victoria, BC to an hour outside of Edmonton, AB, until I heard that the Perms were coming to play at “Lyve on Whyte” in Edmonton. That perked me up immensely. It’s been a couple of years since I saw them play at UVIC, and I loved the idea of seeing how much they’ve progressed and matured since then. Curiosity is a wonderful thing! So off I went…
I was pumped. Three Canadian bands, not well-known perhaps, but still – all homegrown! It had to be a great night.
First up was “Whitemud”, a local group. They opened with a very high powered number, but the levels of distortion were almost as high. I’ve got some seriously mixed feelings on these guys. The lead guitarist and the drummer have oodles of talent, that was visible. In fact the drummer almost looked bored with the whole thing. I can’t see this group ever progressing beyond the point it is at now, provided this is a standard performance. They provided some great background noise, but nothing to write home about. The vocals were powerful, but mostly unintelligible. The driving rhythm and volume rather made up for that. In all honesty, it’s hard to give these guys a fair review and I think they’ll need to be seen again.
Next up was the group I was waiting for, The Perms! A punk-laced power - pop band offering up a wonderfully edgy sound. They blasted their set wide open with all the energy of a kindergarten class on speed! These boys are out to have fun and ensure the audience does, too. I had to laugh to myself, Shane’s gum matched his shirt – a nice shade of green – and I marveled at how well he could sing with it in his mouth!
This trio has talent in abundance, and they always bring a good time to the table. The brothers Smith have an ability to switch up lead vocals which offers a versatility that most bands lack. It adds depth to their music and also allows one to rest up while the other belts out another tune.
The band’s sound has matured a little, and if anything become more cohesive than the last time I saw them (see previous review for details), but they’re having a lot of fun and still passing on their enjoyment of it to the audience with the gift of great music. The fun is contagious, leading the audience to toe-tapping, clapping and hollering.
Most of the songs played were from their latest release – “Keeps You Up When You’re Down”, however, one song fell with familiarity on my ears early in the set – “Lies”. It was delivered with a great deal of energy and felt like an old friend.
Even if they sucked, The Perms have so much contagious energy that nobody would even notice. BUT, they don’t, which only enhances the experience.
Chad’s vocals have become stronger since the last time I saw them, and matured a little as well. It was also a sign of their experience that they were pounding the water until their set was over, then it was okay to reach for the beer. It’s all about the music and not the party with this trio. Their hard work and dedication pays off with an unbeatable show.
Solid sound, memorable lyrics – these guys will go places in the course of their career. Oh, that’s right, they just returned from Eastern Europe a week ago. You’d never know that they’re suffering from jet lag, but they hide it well. Last time I saw them it was their second show in the day, and there was a long tiring ferry ride in between the gigs. It didn’t show.
The Perms have a high caliber of showmanship to go along with their memorable music. Catching this Winnipeg based group is a guarantee for an awesome night!
This next group knocked me on my ass – literally! I swear I sat there with my jaw hanging open for at least the first number. I didn’t expect the level of musicianship that I received, that’s for damned sure.
Flash Lightnin’ is a band out of Toronto. In my ears, a power-based trio that is destined for some very great things. According to the info that could be found, “they were born in 2007 at the Dakota Tavern.” However, they are already on their second drummer.
The music is sensual and beckoning. The lead singer, Darren Glover, sounds a wee bit like Scotland’s own Dan McCafferty – the lead singer of Nazareth – when he’s in raspy mode. Just a wee bit, though. Darren has a voice that’s one minute breathy and sexy, like a male equivalent to Marilyn Monroe, then the next sliding up the back of your neck like an icy cold hand. This guy is incredible and his voice alluring! He also pays attention to his audience, making eye contact and involving them in the gig.
The band all love what they are doing, and it shows in every single note. They put 150% of themselves into the show. This night was all about their latest release, a self-titled CD that will be reviewed in a future issue. The musical style varied from number to number and if you are paying attention you can hear numerous influences within the melodies and rhythms. There’s lighter gently pulsating beats and then grinding rhythms and riff heavy melodies – all within the same song!
The talent that goes into this is simply astounding from the very start. It’s a unique and ground-breaking sound… a little blues, a little rock, and a lot of fun! It’s an original and very unique blend of sound from consummate musicians. They were definitely a different style and level than the prior bands.
Darren gave it all he had on the lead for a time, and then drifted along on Darcy Yate’s bass current, taking a small break and showcasing his fellow musicians as they spawned what was almost a surreal experience. Rich Knox entered into the “zone” on his drums and stayed there for the entire performance – an incredible performance to watch, reminiscent of some of the masters.
This is a very misleading band to look at; you’ve got your clean-cut stylish member, a gruff biker type, and then the one in the middle, average everyday joe. I heard mention of them looking like the Bee Gees! However, they pack a punch on stage. They are mature, cohesive, talented, and full of energy. A sound worthy of the radio… they kick ass!
Flash Lightnin is a group you are going to want to check out! But beware, the new sound they’ve put together is addictive!
Article by: Naomi De Bruyn
posted:30 Nov 2010
Related Link: http://www.theperms.com
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