Ottawa Explosion Day 1: TV FREAKS and more at SAW Gallery


TV FREAKS broke through the static and kicked off Ottawa Explosion Weekend with a bang outside of Saw Galley on June 19th.

Fresh off rocking out at North by North East (NxNE) in Toronto, TV FREAKS were tight, noisy, energized and a force to be reckoned with.  With members of Sam Coffey and the Iron Lungs standing in the front; dancing, singing along and crowd surfing the lead singer, TV FREAKS played an explosive set.  They are a great mix of garage sound with hardcore intensity, and some pretty sick dance moves. They played some great tunes like “Spilt Milk’’ and “Mall Punk.’’ TV FREAKS were the perfect band to headline the first night of Ottawa Explosion Weekend, which saw an awesome crowd show up.

Montréal’s Bummer played before TV FREAKS and the trio really impressed me.  The lead singer/guitarist was rocking out with his curly hair flying all over the place.  Check out their tracks “Kids on the Run’’ and “Reminder,’’ they got me moving.

The ghost Elvis or Buddy Holly must have been next door at the jail hostel and possessed, Sam Coffey and the Iron Lungs. These old school rock n rollers with a dash of punk twist made me want to do the twist and shout. Three mics for six people, no problem, they just shared or in the case of the drummer and bass player, they just yelled out the words from a far. I loved there set and really liked the tracks “Lose that Bitch’’ and “What Have I Become.’’  To top it all off the keyboard player’s grandparents, great aunt, aunt and uncle showed up… most punk rock people in town.

The local portion of the evening was provided by Uranium Comeback and Black Tower. Uranium Comeback were introduced as a band who has only played 12 shows ok 6 years. Their set of upbeat punk was very fun and made me want to dance and tap my toes. Songs “Walking’’ and “Out of time’’ really stuck out for me. I hope they start doing more shows. Black Tower were a female lead metal and punk trio. I really got into the intros of a few of their songs, made me miss my long hair. Also missing his long hair was the drummer who half way through the set took off his huge black hair wig to reveal his bald head. Nothing wrong with a chrome dome brother, we save a bunch of money on haircuts and shampoo.

Emmanuel Sayer, one of the organizers, capped off the night by saying, “thanks for coming out everyone… we have five more days of this and it will only get worse.’’ His laughter was met with the crowd chanting “Let’s get worse! Let’s get worse!’’ I am sure there are a ton of great performances left among the 90+ bands yet to perform.

Day one is in the books.  If you missed out on the fun, don’t let it happen again.  Check out the festival schedule here.

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