FUNKING AT THE COMMODORE BALLROOM
Entering the Commodore on Saturday night, it was if the late arrival of summer had been transported indoors. There was a happy party vibe, as if everyone wanted to bring some of the of that long-awaited sunshine indoors with them. With both acts on the bill hailing from BC, it was clear that they picked up on this, and were ready to deliver.
Victoria BC’s Astrocolor were first up, and managed to get the audience to their feet even before they started playing. Whilst the band’s techs dealt with electrical issues with DJ Desk, front man Neil Cooke-Dallin entertained the crowd with his energetic dance moves, and some dubious use of Maracas.
This was their first time playing the Commodore, and based on the audience reaction it will not be the last. The infectious enthusiasm of Cooke-Dallin, combined with the tight back line, and some superb sax playing kept the audience engaged through the whole set.
The band have a few dates lined up for the summer including the Tall Tree Music Festival in Port Renfrew on June 24th, and the Atmosphere Gathering in the Comox Valley on August 20th. If you fancy a road trip or two get your tickets now
In the meantime, you can check out their latest EP here.
The main act of the night, Five Alarm Funk, needed no introduction. The dancefloor was packed before they took to the stage on what was the opening night off their latest tour. The Vancouver eight-piece were promoting their latest album “Sweat”. This is the sixth studio album from the band, and builds on the success of the previous outings, with epic deep sounds, and the bands usual sense of fun.
This sense of fun is what sets Five Alarm Funk apart from other acts. They really are the ultimate party band, if you have room to fit all eight of these crazy performers, along with all their props, into the party, J
The band’s immense sound is rivaled only by their stage theatrics. I don’t think there is another band that opens in quite the same way as the ‘Funk. A gorilla, a manic rhinestone cowboy, a kilted trombone player, a sax player that would have been at home in the band Madness (showing my age ), two perpetually grinning axemen, the world’s biggest afro, topped off with the worlds most enthusiastic drummer, who could double as a lead in Braveheart.
The entire set was a blaze of colour and excitement and the audience lapped it up. Tayo Branston thanked everyone for being party of the launch party, and clearly was appreciative of the opportunity to launch the tour in front of a local crowd.
The band will now take the funk to the people south of the border for the next month or so, before heading back to BC for several dates in July and August, so it wont be too long before you can get out and see them again. Latest dates can be found here
Check out some images below