STYROFOAM ONES with the Carps as part of the NXNE Xtra Series at the Mod Club (722 College), Saturday (June 14), 7 pm. $10, free for first 50 NXNE wristband holders (see page 62). 416-870-8000; Drake Underground (1150 Queen West, 416-531-5042), Saturday (June 14), midnight. $5, free w/ NXNE wristband (see page 62). Rating: NNNNN
They don’t have an actual release out yet, and there’s only a small handful of raw demo recordings online, but over the past year Styrofoam Ones have been quietly building a strong reputation through their fiery live shows and maddeningly catchy pop hooks.
They fit best within the legions of dance rock bands that have popped up over the past decade, but they’re no cookie-?cutter electro band. They’re more like your classic power pop trio, but replace the guitar with some dirty synths and slap some distortion all over the bass guitar to fill in the missing dirt. The occasional drum machine in the background is something of a red herring – residue of the times we’re living in rather than an indication of the band’s disco fantasies.
On first listen, their punk energy is what you notice, but once they get to their first chorus, the pure pop potential shines through loud and clear. If there’s any justice in the world, someone will capture this raw, unrefined magic before they clean it up too much. They’ve likely got a great new-?wave pop record in them, but we’d like to enjoy this loose and dirty phase of their evolution a bit longer first.