Monday, April 11, 2011

Fucked Up in a whole new Silent Light

          As I leaned against the wall downstairs of the Toronto Underground Cinema, checking my Twitter feeds (@sonicmoremusic1) and studying the vast array of old and new movie posters that adorned the walls , the same questions kept replaying over and over again in my mind...what were Fucked Up going to do tonight ?  And would they be able to pull it off? We were all about to have those 2 questions answered.

    As part of the Images Festival Closing Night Gala in collaboration with Wavelength Toronto, Fucked Up had been asked to perform a live soundtrack during a screening of the 1928 silent film West of Zanzibar.  West of Zanzibar is about the vengefulness of a cuckolded magician paralyzed in a brawl with his rival , the film stars Lon Chaney and Lionel Barrymore.

      Coming back downstairs from checking the list and getting our tickets I noticed the doors to the great room had been opened, so I and my partner in crime for the night, celebrated concert photographer Kevin Lamb made our way inside.  As I leaned against one of the theatre seats we saw members of the band trickle in and out checking on their equipment and just basically getting ready for the performance. The band had all of their instruments and equipment set up right under the large movie screen, I was still running the question through my mind “What were Fucked Up going to do tonight ? “ ...that question was about to be answered.

   So after a much tripped out screening of the General Chaos Visuals film Luminaries and then some introductions of the people that helped put on the Festival it was time for the film to start. The lights went down, the opening credits started appearing on the screen and the music began.

        From that point on it was all just this swirling, wall of sound, blur of music and visuals. This was not the Fucked Up we had become accustomed to seeing live on stage over the years, this was a band without an In Your Face, Charismatically driven lead singer (Damian Abraham was in a seat enjoying what was going down with the rest of us), this was a band that was for lack of a better term Naked...this was a band that was stepping out front for the first time...and dammit, they made all of us in that audience sit up and listen.

    I don’t know exactly how much time and effort they had to work on this project, but they synced every high hat and snare with every snarl and scream up on that huge movie screen, they made us all believe that their music was the original.  Whether it was the one two three punch of guitarists Mike Haliechuk, Josh Zuker and Ben Cook, or the always solid bass playing of Sandy Miranda (at one point she just couldn’t sit down anymore and had to stand up to get it done) and the furiously depth and controlled drumming of the mighty Jonah Falco.

        The whole thing lasted approx about 63 minutes or so, but hours after I still had it buzzing in my mind.

   Fucked Up is a band that is well known to push the musical boundaries and with this performance, they didn’t just push them, they shoved them down on the ground and kicked the shit right out of them.....Thank You

Joe Cornelisse-SSGS

1 comment:

  1. Smashing weird engrossing stuff - thanks for posting it.
    Sometimes its easy to forget that without the compulsive charisma of Damian for your eyes to follow round the room, the band are fantastically hypnotic and very important.