Big Sugar gets Kelowna on its Feet!
If you read my review of last weekend’s Finger Eleven show, you’ll remember that its a nearly impossible feat for bands coming through the Okanagan to get ‘sit down theatre’ type audiences on their feet, due to venue staff, or the crowd itself. But tonight, that wasn’t allowed to happen!
Anyone unfamiliar with Triggerfinger needs to go look this band up RIGHT NOW. Hailing from Belgium, Big Sugar toured as openers for them a while back and loved their energies so much that when Triggerfinger came over to Canada, Big Sugar insisted on taking them on tour! Thank you guys!
Gold lame’ shoes, a massive gold lame’ back drop, an insane drummer who spent nearly as much time licking his drum sticks and trying to eat his cymbals, a bassist who was the epitome of cool, and a front man who sashays across the stage like the Thin White Duke all the while banging on his slender white and gold guitar making a hell of an awesome racket. It was like i was being transported back in time to the Punk era that was was too young to experience the first time out! Loved every single minute of the intense energetic LOUD goings ons on stage! Best. Damn. Drummer. I’ve ever seen!!
Short change over, brief intermission and time to go look at the merch table, World Vision table and grab a chocolate bar to keep my energies up.. this is Big Sugar don’t you know.
Starting with familiar songs, including one of my favourites ‘Digging a Hole’ was a great way to go – fired the audience up from the get-go. Interspersing the new tunes from ‘Calling All The Youth’ with the many massive radio hits, kept momentum all evening. A few brave souls behind us stood up to dance, seeing as how we were front row, we didn’t want to be ‘the first’ and block anyone’s view. The people behind stood up, we stood up! 3 rows behind yelled ‘sit down’ despite DJ Friendliness’ attempt from the stage to motion us up with his arms.. sigh.
A few more songs, and Mr Chill picks up a sax which adds an extra element to the mix, and bassist Garry Lowe grooves all night respondent in black suit jacket, and shocking white/grey dreads under a black felt hat. All the band is wearing black hats, each different and unique to its owner, and Gordie Johnson takes his off at one point to show off his new shorter (much shorter) hair. Looks great! Very slick.
Mid set DJ Friendliness, resplendent in waist long blond dreadlocks, smokey grey hat and itty bitty glasses, takes the mic, comes to the stage front and says, ‘if you all stand up, nobody can tell you to sit down.’ and launches into the next song — and all hell breaks loose! We stand up, people come down the stairs to the front, the space between stage and front row fills up with hot sweaty bodies and glowing faces, and a few brave souls spark up a joint and blow clouds of kush into the air to which frontman Gordie Johnson just smiles and keeps singing. The one hold out, a slothful youth beside us who has stated ‘I’m too lazy to stand up,” finally gets to his feet, and begins to dance.. hallelujah.. Big Sugar gets everyone into the groove!
A killer rendition of ‘Oh Canada’ with Gordie Johnson playing guitar behind his neck – hmm.. I’ve seen John-Angus MacDonald do that move before — oh! That’s where he got it from 😉 A short off stage-back on stage moment from the band, and they come back on with Triggerfinger‘s singer for a few last songs, a long group bow and waves, and an invitation to come see them at the merch table, and free swag for anyone that has sponsored a child that night.
Awesome band, high energy night, and maybe we will learn that the move we give the more we get back and dancing is much more fun than sitting. Thank you Big Sugar. Thank you DJ Friendliness!
Want to know what our guy Chris thought of the bands the night before in Vancouver? Read it HERE
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