08-09-099 August 2009 at RedxRed

I first heard Katastroyka the night before, when they opened for Adjective at the Rickshaw Theatre. While that evening didn’t go down as smooth as I’d like, this performance in a vodka bar on Granville was a redemption. The sound check was a little rough, but only because the “stage” is really just a nook in the wall. It may be a cranny, please correct me on this, but it was barely large enough to contain the band members, let alone their instruments. I’m not as familiar with Katastroyka’s tunes as I’d like to be, but my favourite songs were their second and last ones. Jason Allum’s bass playing on the second song reminded me a little of Death Cab For Cutie, but Katastroyka’s influences are centred around destruction. They make up for a lack of drummer with beat tracks on their laptop, and their dedication to music is seen in their belonging to multiple bands. Lead singer Ryan Riot is also the lead singer of Adjective, and guitarist Dave Cotton is in both The Ludvico Treatment and Seven Nines and Tens, two of my favourite local bands.

Seven Nines and TensMy intense love for post- and prog rock is what fuels my love of local band Seven Nines and Tens. Despite broadcasting an SOS on Twitter (drummer Earl Heath tends to wear shorts on stage), I don’t need saving from a Seven Nines and Tens performance. Despite playing a rather short set list of only six songs, the guys made them count. Their set list includes “A Concept Record,” “Castles on St. Clare Beach,” and “Spike Island” (soon to be added to their MySpace). My favourite listening can be found in the interludes of Seven Nines and Tens songs. In particular, the interlude towards the end of “Spike Island” features a solo by guitarist Dave Cotton, later joined by Aylon Cohen on bass, and accompanied by electronic fairy dust from drummer Earl Heath. Another song actually contains lyrics, a direction Seven Nines and Tens intend to explore despite the fact that prog rock is typically instrumental. Part of the atypical nature of the band, the lyrics of this particular number are actually a poem by ee cummings, brought to life by Aylon’s loud recitation over the music.

Girlfriends and BoyfriendsGirlfriends and Boyfriends are a new favourite of mine, matching the rather quirky vibe I’ve only found in Lengthy List of Lovers. Their songs are mainly about the tragic, often inevitable end of many relationships: being dumped. Grant plays the bass and keys (but not at the same time), Pete plays three different guitars (but not at the same time), and Arun plays the drums (all at the same time). Grant claims to have been dumped on Facebook, and another song is about Pete being dumped and then going to England (which results in a fun dance-or-at-least-squirm-in-your-chair number).

I’d highly recommend Girlfriends and Boyfriends to anyone who enjoys a fun night out. Don’t despair if you missed this show; you can see Girlfriends and Boyfriends when they headline a show at The Media Club, opened by Katastroyka and another of my favourite bands, The Ludvico Treatment. Keep up with the Backstage Vancouver calendar to see what other local bands we recommend.

Comments (5)


  1. […] substitute sounded rather like jamming to the beat of a metronome. Don’t be disheartened though; their performance tomorrow night promises to be a very different […]

  2. […] And Boyfriends first caught my ear at their August show, curiously located at vodka bar RedxRed. While that show involved a headband and a sailor hat, this […]

  3. […] main stage. It’s hard to find good local post-rock bands (so far I’ve only uncovered Seven Nines and Tens), so The Film Industry has my […]

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