hot yoga's EP Release Party w/ The Fantods and The Blackrats

Halifax’s Hot Yoga threw one hell of a hootenanny on Sunday night in celebration of their first E.P. ‘Quick Hot Grind’ and you’d better believe the Noisography team was there with cameras rolling. Because we never, ever, ever miss a hootenanny!

Blackrats opened the ceremonies. They performed a too-the-point set of old school horror punk inspired by bands like the Cramps, Misfits and Rocket From the Crypt. They played songs that referenced zombies (‘Zombie Walk’ and ‘Return of the Living Dead’), the Frankenstein legend (Creature Bride), and cannibals (Cannibal).

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The style the band chose to play is somewhat limiting; rockabilly bands usually stick to one style of song writing, which can grow tiresome. The group kept things fun with amusing spooky-core lyrics but had little variation in their sound making the songs bleed together after awhile.

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The thing that really kept Blackrats interesting was Tyler Crane, whose saxophone playing owned big time. He wailed on that sucker, unleashing solos that were tasty and played with passion. The killer sax added some much needed spice to the band’s sound. The rest of the band did their parts with skill and their set encouraged more than a few people to get in front of the stage and dance like it was the day before the zombie apocalypse (which is what I think they were after).

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Next, Hot Yoga entered the ring and came in swinging. Their set was off-the-hook awesome. Singer/guitarist Wyatt Carson handed out tambourines of all shapes and sizes to the audience before the set. The dance floor of Gus’ Pub rang out with the sounds of cheers and jingle bells as the band kicked into their first song.

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And so the party began.

Hot Yoga play a super infectious, quirky brand of new-wavy pop rock that is virtually impossible not to like. They were in fine form on Sunday and their set showcased some great melodies, sweetly strange ramblings, sexy beats and dirty guitars; think old school B52s covering Iggy pop.

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As great as Hot Yoga’s music and live performance is, what I liked best was their charisma. Hot yoga is a band full of a uniquely affable personality that is totally priceless. If you don’t have fun at their shows you should probably go see a doctor.


Just before lights out, the Fantods crept onstage and threatened to do us in. The Fantods have been a Halifax staple for years now. I’ve seen them countless times and own all their records. They never disappoint. Their live shows are crazy unpredictable and their songs are excellent.

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At the beginning of the set, things were halted momentarily with some technical problems. Guitarist Jay Methot’s amp had shorted out. The band kept things rolling with some funny banter and sweet bass groves until the technical problems were sorted out and then they carried on without losing a step.

The Fantods are a properly lubricated machine at this point and their set showed that in spades. They played fast and without mercy. They played all of their classics and threw in a few incendiary newer tracks.

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Vocalist “Bunny Dan Gallant is, aside from being one of my favorite lyricists, a fantastic showman. He is always entertaining, seemingly without effort and has one of the sickest screams in the city. Guitarist/vocalist Neil Peacock (or Professor F.) nicely juxtaposes Gallant’s Nick-Cave-on-amphetamines persona with a folky rasp that adds so much dimension to the band. When the two vocalists harmonize together in the choruses it reaffirms why the Fantods are an awesome band. The rhythm section of Tim Topping (bass) and the mysterious Bango (drums) keep the insanity danceable. Guitarist Jay Methot ventures between ethereal string bends and attacking his guitar with thunderous riffs.

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Here's some full disclosure: I am in a band with two of the Fantods (Jay Methot and Tim Topping) called The Search For Alexander (we haven’t played around town in a couple of years, but we’ve been jamming together when we can). The Fantods routinely cover 2 old TSFA songs in their live sets and were kind enough to allow me on stage to join them for their rendition of “Way, Way Down the Road”. It made my night to get to shout onstage with one of my favorite Halifax bands. Does it also make me biased? Probably.



Review by Isaac Thompson



Tim said...

So, we "never fail to disappoint", huh?


Isaac said...

hah, yeah I just noticed that.
Don't worry, it's not a weird, subtle dig at the band. Just a dumb-ass type o.
I clearly meant to write "never dissapoint" but it seems my fingers lost that in the translation. oops. It's fixed now though.

Fantods 4 Lyfe.