It was with anxious excitement that I headed downtown Vancouver on public transit the other night for a free street show put on by the local radio station. It’s been over a year since Canadian Rockers, State of Shock have played live in their own city! Of course this is because they’ve been terribly busy writing and recording their next album, Rock and Roll Romance.
Opening bands, Louder than Love, Head of the Herd and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes are all part of the radio station’s ‘Seeds’ Competition, and are the top three contenders for a recording contract (the winner to be announced later in the week at another concert featuring The Trews). My arrival coincided with the last two songs from Louder than Love and by the sounds coming from the audience it had been a good night so far.I hoped it was about to get better!
As I watched the last song, I turned to see the various members of State of Shock walking up the street from a local club being used as the Green Room. Completely at ease in the crowd, they signed autographs, gave hugs and had their photos taken with fans of all ages as they walked to the stage. Seconds later, they were diving in to their first new song, F Word and had the audience eating out of their hands from the get-go – with lyrics like this is it any wonder?
“We all wanna be oh so famous, but we’re only the way that God made us
So in the limelight soak soak it up tonight, cause fifteen minutes fades faster than the moonlight
So from us to you, this is our salute,
everyone together now
THANK YOU! “
The band road tested about 4 new songs, which were received with the same enthusiasm as the recognizable hits like Money Honey, Too Pretty, and The Best I Ever Had, and the band were obviously pleased by the overwhelming reception, as well as the audience’s attempts to sing louder than front man Cam Melnyk! Backed by Jesse Wainright on guitar, Kadooh (Simon Clow) on guitar, Alison Toews on bass and Johnny Philippon on drums, State of Shock put everything they had into the set, and it showed in the shining eyes, glowing faces and smiles a mile wide! As I looked around at the audience singing, I noticed that this band really does have an amazing variety of fan – teenagers, 40-somethings, parents with children some as young as 5 or 6, even grandparents with grandkids – and it was amazing to see the youngsters singing along with the band. This ain’t no bar band – their popularity really does reach across the generation gap and the songs are family friendly but also have depth and the band’s music writing ability has shot up a notch (based on the new songs!).
I noticed too, that the band seemed different somehow… well dressed, in tune with the fans throughout the show (and after the show), able to roll with the punches and talk to the audience to keep them engaged between songs – they’ve kicked it up a notch and it shows!
State of Shock’s new album, Rock and Roll Romance, is available on iTunes NOW! Cd drops September 20th available at the band’s Website and cd outlets.
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