Lullabye Arkestra with Lenin I Shumov , Sailboats are White and Guitarkestra at the Drake Hotel, April 9. Attendance: 130. Tickets: pwyc. Rating: NNNN Rating: NNNN
Prompt arrivals at this ciut 89.5 benefit were treated to a performance by the Guitarkestra , an outfit that consists solely of young semi-iconoclast Craig Dunsmuir . Dunsmuir employs a looping pedal to give his one guitar the layered sound of many. As he attractively and robotically rocked out in place, often referring to the piles of arcane notes lying at his feet, it seemed his percussionless, unvoxed sound was ripe for drowning out by idle chit-chat, but people stayed their tongues.
After each nicely crafted tune, the crowd applauded happily. Dunsmuir's precision made it seem as if the late scientist Richard Feynman were guiding him from the afterlife.
Hamilton's Sailboats Are White followed and definitely upped the adrenaline ante with an extreme frontman, Kevin Douglas , whose voice and stage presence made me think of punk music, as did their tunes. Douglas leapt on the drum kit at the end of the set, which created a fairly entertaining faux brawl that had pansies like me in the audience wishing we had the cojones to knock stuff around.
Up next were Lenin I Shumov , whose frontman, Eugene Slonimerov, sings in Russian over rock opuses, adeptly backed by a five-piece band. Anna Linda Siddall 's clarinet playing at the beginning of the show really added to the saxophonic sound provided by Scotch Camera , who also handled viola when not horning.
Slonimerov held the crowd's attention and kept the band's steady pace, even at the end, when he broke a guitar string and was forced to rely mostly on his quivering, bellowed vocals.
Lullabye Arkestra , the seven-piece love rock outfit drummed, bassed and founded by Do Make Say Think's Justin Small and Deep Dark United's Katia Taylor , ruled the day.
Their arrival prompted a visible commotion. Marco "Deadeye" Landini kept things interesting by looming ominously, sliding under benches and screaming, sometimes into a mike. Keyboards were added by Tangiers' Shelton Deverell .
The band alternated between heavy, bluesy tunes belted out by Taylor and more horn-driven rock and roll jams that brought a tighter, less iconic-looking Deadly Snakes to mind, perfectly shouted by Small.
Near the end, they convinced a sizable number to get on their knees for rock and roll, which leads me to believe they should adopt a Raelianesque doomsday theory and become some sort of cult.
They'd definitely have followers.