Photos by Neil Van
A soggy Sunday rolls around and the ponchos are out in force as Japandroids manage to liven up the damp crowd with their last Canadian show in a while, lamenting that they brought the rain with them from Vancouver. As enjoyable as anthemic rock with a tinge of Celtic flavour is, I’m off to hide from the downpour in the Laugh Barracks – a small room displaying music photography and squeezing in some comedy shows. Jackie Pirico is just the antidote for rainy day blues. She’s like an intense, swearing, boy-crazy 12 year old – and quite the a storyteller. Outside the Laugh Barracks, Deer Tick bring some country flavour to Fort York that gives off calm Sunday feelings a cheer when the sun briefly shines.
Hometown favourites Alvvays, who sold out five nights at the Mod Club this winter draw an expectedly large crowd to their hypnotic dream pop, thanking the crowd for getting soggy with them. In Undertow elicits a cheer from the crowd and it’s a nice time for Rankin to encourage the Ontarians to head out and vote on Thursday. It’s a sweet sentiment the fits with the character of the band. Archie, Marry Me and Plimpsoll Punks in particular make me think that if weather could be influenced by music, this is certainly the band to calm the clouds and stop the rain. If you like Alvvays, you probably know Camera Obscura – if not, I suggest you check them out.
Sunday headliners the Yeah Yeah Yeahs take to the stage, as you’d expect, with much aplomb and the electronic clarion call of Rich. Karen O is immediately magnetic – leaping around the stage, eating her microphone, using it’s cord like a lion tamer’s whip and generally being the most punk person around. She’s a force to behold. A couple of six foot inflatable eyeballs come floating out into the crowd for Zero and Maps is dedicated to all the mothers, kids and lovers in the audience. The energy of the whole band has the crowd bouncing, particularly for Heads Will Roll – a worthy closer before the encore of Cheated Hearts, Date With The Night and a thrumming cacophony of guitar, drums and mic crashing making the stage sound like it’s emitting fireworks. A fitting goodnight for Field Trip 2018 – see you next year.