It’s been a decade long love affair with the city of Hamilton that gave birth to the Arkells who played their very first show in 2005 at McMaster university, according to Max Kerman, lead singer, during the show. So it is not a surprise that their biggest headlining show of their short-run of Canadian dates and biggest show of their careers happened in their hometown of Hamilton, selling out the FirstOntario Centre
There was a lot of love in the air, not just for the band, but for the city and it’s people. A fan mentioned to me that the Arkells’ band name was originally named after a street nearby McMaster university. He also mentioned that the band members themselves contribute to the city and community, and that was the general feeling in the room Friday night. You could feel the love and admiration of fans for the band and what the Arkells represent for the city.. As Max pointed out, the “heart and soul” of Hamilton is here tonight.
It was a great night and everything you ever wanted in a concert: singing, dancing, friends, couples and families coming together, a light show, great music, kissing, camaraderie, community, and love. With everything else happening in the world, especially in the States, this was a reprieve. Some highlights: harmonica “Phil” (a fan Frank Turner invited on stage to play, and blew everyone away), Max crowd surfing during the first song, an impromptu Motown karaoke mid-set from “Dr. Rock and Roll” himself Frank Turner, a quiet acoustic break with cellphones luminating the darkness, dancing in complete darkness and Max’s big happy face seranading fans in the middle of the crowd. Ultimately, music is about bringing people together and Arkells give it their all every time they hit the stage.