Won't Go Home!
Our regular DMX watch continues. This weekend, the bald, gruff MC, who arrived for Caribana and hasn't left yet, was spotted on Dupont filming a movie with beefy "actor" Steven Seagal.
The usual extended crew of "dogs" and hangers-on that tends to follow DMX was nowhere to be seen, but there was a big Hummer conspicuously waiting across the street. Perhaps a summer home in the 416 is in the works.
Packing It In
Fans of dreamy Toronto space rock unit South Pacific are advised to make it by the group's Lee's Palace gig Saturday. It's your last chance.
The band is calling it quits following the show, citing the ever-popular reason of "wanting to do something different." Fair enough, but it's a shame, considering that over the past few months South Pacific have added some much-needed ballast to their set, creating a dense sound that is both slow and heavy. Here's hoping that a triple-threat effort from the three departing members will build on that.
In the meantime, Saturday's last blast should be an epic affair. Expect an extravaganza -- lights, strobes and plenty of droning sounds.
TEEN CRUD COMBO
El Mocambo, Fri, August 18
The large El Mocambo turnout for the release of Teen Crud Combo's self-titled debut single probably had something to do with the advance notice that this could be their last stand in Toronto.
Judging by the way people stayed well clear of the stage during performances by the openers, few were there to enjoy the Blues Explosion-inspired battering of Shikasta or the Chickens' ratcheted riffing. There was no question that this was Teen Crud's night and the kick-ass Combo were going out in style -- new romantic style.
Frontman Nick Flanagan had gotten himself gussied up for the occasion in a puffy-sleeved pirate shirt and fancy pantaloons topped off with a rakish little hairpiece hanging over his brow a la Spandau Ballet's Tony Hadley. Then, reaching into his shoulder bag, he flung handfuls of flower petals over the crowd while crooning the words to True. But before Flanagan reached the chorus, the Combo's former drummer, Mark J., crept forward and smacked him with a cream pie facial worthy of a prime minister.
Dazed and dripping but ready for action, the frosted-faced Flanagan continued into the evening's program of Motörhead-modelled thrash workouts, including the four burners from their fab new EP. A couple of wiseacres up front had plans of their own that involved the dropping of Flanagan's drawers.
Though unsuccessful, their diligent efforts left Flanagan trying to finish the last number while stumbling sideways with his pants around his ankles, defiantly clutching his "Take Me To Your Leader" boxer shorts. By the time the group left their feedbacking instruments in a heap onstage, all the vinyl they'd brought was completely sold out. Mission accomplished.
Rivoli, Sat, August 19
The Rivoli had the vibe of a high-energy house party Saturday, with Mambo Urbano Orchestra playing the very entertaining hosts. The four-piece group -- whose set was bookended by DJ sets thrown down by band member Boris -- kicked off with a six-minute percussion jam, one of many that showcased their drumming talents as they charged through latin grooves, Brazilian house and Afro-Cuban beats.
You gotta love a group that can't help but dance to their own mix, and despite all the percussion pieces crowding the stage, guest singer Divine Earth Essence -- slated for a feature role on Mambo's forthcoming album -- and the boys made sure they had enough room to bust out a couple of moves.
Similarly, the packed house filled the dance floor with some saucy salsa shimmying and emphatic cat- calls. At one point, Mambo member Alvaro directed the horde into an interactive hand-clapping beat to launch a piece. "The party continues," he promised. And so it does -- Mambo Urbano Orchestra play monthly at the Riv.