I’ve been to hundreds of hip hop shows over the past few years in random venues all over the city. But since I’ve become a writer I have also gotten invited to many indie concerts. Before every indie show I always feel out of place heading to a concert that isn’t rap or hip hop related. I enjoy going to shows that are not hip hop it’s a breath of fresh air and introduces me to music I wouldn’t otherwise have heard before. My good friend Katt invited me to come check out the band she represents Boat Culture last Thursday at the Handlebar.
I had no idea where this bar was so I hop on google maps as I start my trek down town. After wandering through China Town and past Kensington market I finally find the Handlebar which is surrounded by small bars, cafes and random dance studios. I get there about 10 minutes early so I walk inside and grab a random beer. At that time there were a few people milling around the stage and a few others by the bar. I had no idea who else was playing on this rainy Thursday night. Sometimes going to a concert without knowing the lineup can be a great thing. It’s like a surprise party! People just pop up and make you happy instead of cake they play amazing music. The first band to command the small stage was Straight To Business. And well they got straight to business. Every band member was dressed in Jays gear except for the lead singer who wore the coolest leather jacket. Anyone supporting our home town teams are good in my books especially after we just lost two games. They started to rock the Handlebar with their uniquely energizing sound. After they left their hearts on the stage there was a brief break as the next band Germaphobes were getting ready to rock.
Katt tells me she was the inspiration for one of the songs on their EP. It was finally the moment we were all waiting for, Boat Culture pick up their instruments as the crowd once again gathered. It was a crowd mixed of friends and strangers all bonding together over rock and roll. They have this really smooth sound that will take you back to those sunny summer days. You could tell they were having so much fun up their playing their hearts out. During the middle of their set they started to have technical issues. They had to stop for a few minutes as they tried to figure out what was going on. But like true professionals they kept pushing on as the lead singer and drummer started to play some more songs as they were getting the issues figured out with the other guitar. Honestly for me watching this it was incredible. They didn’t let this set back get to them; they did the true rock in roll thing and kept the show going. That’s what really stood out to me. Well that and their amazing performance.
Everyone was dancing and singing the lyrics back to them by the end of the night. Once they ended I said bye to Katt and ran my ass off trying to catch the last subway. For a hip hop head who isn’t use to indie shows, I will remember this one for a long time.