Colony House at the Horseshoe Tavern

Photographs by Janine Van Oostrom

Good ol’ Tennessee rock is not something that I would have thought was missing from my life; that was until I saw Colony House live. I’m glad to say that I am one of the lucky ones to witness them bring the house down on Saturday night at the Horseshoe Tavern. The southern quartet hit the stage at the prime hour of 11pm (by prime I mean past my bedtime) and from the very look of their stage set up you could tell this was going to be a show unlike any other. There is a certain standard that you come to expect with smaller shows in terms of production and a background lit entirely by an LED screen is far far far beyond that standard. The LED screen was just the first of many of my expectations that would be shattered that night.

Sometimes you can see a band live and just tell right in that very moment why they deserve every ounce of success that has come their way, Colony house is one of those bands. Anyone in the room could literally feel the energy that the band radiated and could see how it affected every other person there; from those jammed tightly at the front to those sitting in the back. It felt like you couldn’t even blink or look away for a second out of fear that you may miss something spectacular. Whether that be one of the many changing graphics on the screen or a smashing double guitar solo or chorus filled with so much energy you weren’t sure that it was even possible. It really is rare to be that captivated by a live show and you’re one of the lucky ones if you get to experience it.

The quartet were quick to jump right into the action by playing some of their biggest hits like “You & I” and “Cannot Do This Alone” right off the bat. By doing this they took away the slow build up of energy that often comes along with shows and instead just set the bar high right from the beginning. Within the first few songs the crowd was already as amped up as ever and ready to ready to carry that with them throughout the rest of the show.

It’s always a special thing to see a band at their first headlining show in a city; it’s a completely different thing to see them in a crowd who welcomes them like old friends. They drew a reaction from the Toronto crowd that one would expect from a band who has been around the block a few times over, not one on their first lap around. Maybe it was the classic Canadian kindness peeking through or maybe it was that Colony House are really just that good (I prefer to think it’s a mix of both). Either way Colony House are a band that are quickly making a name for themselves in the world of indie music and are definitely a band that you need to see next time you find yourself wondering what to do on a Saturday night in Toronto.

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Long suffering student by day. Music writer by night.