Special to the Review
Last week I reviewed the best DJ highlight shows of ski season, this week is dedicated to the best live bands who played in Revelstoke this winter.
Daring Greatly at River City Pub – Early season
As I mentioned in the first music review I wrote for a local newspaper Daring Greatly is one of the best bands I’ve ever seen play in Revelstoke. Now that the word has spread about this awesome five piece band there was a packed crowd both nights they played the Regent, it was not a struggle to the keep the dance floor crowded they get the bar up and dancing with a solid mix of cover and original tunes. I still am amazed how a group with the Dad on bass/vocal with his two sons on guitar/keyboards/vocals can be so good but their family chemistry and years of playing together is obvious from how tight they are. Vocals are a strong point with in tune harmonies that make you think you’re hearing the real band if doing a tribute song, even though their originals are my favorite I always enjoy when they they play so many different famous groups I grew up listening to. Don’t miss them when they play the River City Pub again the last weekend of May coming up soon.
BC/DC at Traverse – December
I’ve been seeing BC/DC for almost 20 years when I first started going to their shows living in Fernie. The first few times they played there I skipped it because for some stupid reason I thought they would be a cheesy tribute band. When I first made it to the bar Rolling Stone magazine voted “The Coolest Bar In The World” the Eldorado to see this incredible group I could not believe how good these musicians were and how I missed out last few times they played in town. BC/DC has been bringing rock and roll energy for almost two decades and they are not slowing down, this Revelstoke show was the best one I’ve seen in many years. One thing that amazes me is how guys like Brian their lead singer and Chris the bass player still have such good sounding voices after 20 years bringing high energy vocals. Maybe it was the buzz from being opening weekend at Revelstoke Mountain Resort but this night was electric, in fact the crowd got almost too rowdy in the mosh bit keeping the bouncers busy for a while during their last set making sure no one got hurt or too crazy. Much better than last April for these guys to roll through town this show was a perfect way to start the ski season.
|Sam Roberts Band with Kelly Prescott and Tracy Brown played the CP Rail Holiday Train.|
Sam Roberts with Kelly Prescott and Tracy Brown at Canadian Pacific Holiday Train-December
Not thinking there was any live music in Revy that night I was surprised when Isaac one of the owners of Skookum told me at this shop late in the day that the Sam Roberts Band was playing the holiday train in an hour. I’d never seen them but had heard great reviews for years good so lucky for me I had some extra warm clothes in my backpack to put on and head down the CPR tracks. As always the holiday train crowd was packed everywhere with so many kids enchanted by the lights on all the railcars. The opening act was exceptional with Kelly Prescott and Tracey Brown on guitar and violin, I recognized them from playing the downtown free shows last summer and remembered how they caught my ear with their musical skill and vocals. Country is not my favorite genre of music but I always appreciate talent, these woman have it-they know how to get a crowd going. Next up was the Sam Roberts Band who were right on schedule with more stops on the way that night, it didn’t take me long to realize why I’ve heard about them for years they have a unique sound and you could tell really enjoy playing together. Mixing originals with a few cover tunes they had the railroad crowd dancing the whole time, what amazed me most about them though was how the guitarist was able to keep his hands warm without gloves the whole show it was freezing out that night.
INVERTIGO at The Last Drop-January
I first heard Invertigo from Calgary a few before this show when they played to a packed house with some of the highest energy I’ve seen in town all winter for live music not DJ’s. This four piece rock band plays originals plus numerous songs of classic rock favorites that always gets the crowd going and usually singing along as well. Their lead singer Reed has an incredible voice that reaches perfect high pitches reminding me a lot of Axl Rose from Guns & Roses and Freddie Mercury from Queen. He’s got the long straight rocker hair down to his hips which helps add to their on stage persona since he knows how to whip it around perfectly similar to many bands in the 80s they play tunes of. Their lead guitarist Shaddy is so talented too you won’t see many musicians with his level of skill play Revelstoke, this guy would be rich and famous if the year was 1983 he’s incredible in my opinion. Not to be forgotten is their bass player Duncan and drummer Keaton, despite being a bit more in the background they are so solid fitting in perfectly with their lead guitarist and singer. I didn’t catch much of their Friday show due to a longer than normal pre-night-out nap to get energy for the evening but made it for most of Saturdays gig, this featured many of their standard classics from Guns and Roses, Queen, and a few classics from Soundgarden which they dedicated to Chris Cornell mentioning the former lead singer who died by suicide in 2017. I thought the highlight of their show were the two Led Zeppelin songs they played, the second one Rock N Roll was amazing because they invited onstage Steve the lead singer from the warm up band Open Air to join in on vocals and he did a fantastic job imitating Robert Plants voice for this classic tune.
|Dark Stone played The Last Drop in January.|
Dark Stone at The Last Drop–January
As mentioned in my last weeks review of the best DJ memories from winter there’s always one that surprises me, this ski season the band that caught me off guard was Dark Stone an incredible four piece group from Vancouver.
The bar was packed for the beginning of the show with a group of university students who were probably not prepared to see a rock and roll band that belongs in the 80s. If it was that decade and they lived in Los Angeles during that era of music I’m convinced they would have been rich and famous.
Playing mostly original tunes this is a loud rock almost metal band with a huge amount of talent, Matt has great vocals with his brother Jason on guitar. Kato on bass, and Stefan on drums these guys shocked me with their on stage energy I’ve not heard a group bring it like them in many years.
Similar to the Sam Roberts Band with country not being my favorite hard rock and metal is not either but as mentioned I recognize talent and Jason is possibly the best guitar player I’ve ever heard in my 11 years living in Revelstoke he’s a magician with his fingers.
I should have known something was special about him when I saw his line up of four guitars on stage, the amazing ones I’ve seen like him always have a quiver with them. Although hard rock and metal is not what most people like to hear when you see Dark Stone coming to Revelstoke again I’d recommend seeing them, just to see Jason is so worth it he’s super talented.
|Five Alarm Funk played Traverse in February.|
Five Alarm Funk at Traverse-February
Since Five Alarm Funk is a very talented of group of musicians who you can tell are in sync from playing so many years together. A great crowd packed the Traverse from the first song to last song, DJ’s shows are awesome in Revy but it was great to see so many people dancing to a live band. One of the most unique aspects of FA5 is their lead singer and leader is the drummer and lead vocalist Tayo Branston who sits in front of the band unlike most groups, next to him was the percussionist who crushed it all night this guy Tom Towers especially brings so much energy to the stage. Everyone who goes to see them when they are in town always has a great time, it’s hard not to enjoy a Five Alarm Funk show they never seem to have an off night.
Devon Coyote at Traverse-April
I’ve seen this very talented band from Kelowna a few times over the years in Revy and they always put on a solid show. Being the end of the ski season it was not the largest crowd to start with but those in attendance came up more each song to finally get a good amount of people on the dance floor for the last set. This is a musically diverse three piece band that plays a number of different genres of songs which seemed perfect for this audience, everyone seemed to appreciate Devons’ guitar skills you can tell he’s been crafting them playing for many years. This is one of the few bands on this list who will play in Revelstoke soon so be sure not to miss them next time they are in town.http://www.devoncoyote.com/intro
Red Eye Empirte at Revelstoke Mountain Resort-Closing weekend in April
These are both bands that Revelstoke is familiar with since they have been playing here for many years, Red Eye Empire took the stage to a clear sunny sky at the end of the Saturday 4/20 on the hill so there was packed crowd in the village plaza. It took folks a few tunes to stop resting their legs from riding all day to get up on the dance floor but eventually the crowd got bigger to support this great group of musicians. They played a number of originals then launched into a few covers that really got the crowd going, I always think they sound so much like Sublime but with their own style.
Shred Kelly at Revelstoke Mountain Resort-Closing weekend in April
After the closing day 4/21 costume party and crazy vibe on the hill Shred Kelly took the stage to an even bigger plaza village crowd than the day before. This band is one of Revelstoke’s favorites so I recognized many of the same people in town who were at their awesome show at Traverse earlier in the ski season. It didn’t take long for the crowd energy from the last day of winter riding to shift to the dance floor, the entire second set had everyone grooving with smiling faces celebrating another amazing ski season at Revelstoke Mountain Resort. Great female vocals combined with a number of talented musicians is what always brings a solid Revy crowd to their shows, hopefully we don’t have to wait till next ski season to see them again Shred Kelly is a local favorite.
Lucky Monkey at The Last Drop-April
I was not planning on going out this night from being tired but at 10 p.m. decided to get motivated and cruise down to the Last Drop. I remembered how talented this band was from seeing them earlier in the ski season so could not lie on the couch despite it being a Thursday after the hill was closed knowing it would not be a crowded dance floor.
The people who did make it out this night were treated to a great show from a really talented Kelowna band that was promoting their brand new LP “Nothing To Lose” with Revelstoke being the beginning stop on their first cross Canada tour.
Cass the lead singers voice is always worth seeing Lucky Monkey, I can’t describe well with words it’s just that special tone you have to hear for yourself. After playing a number of original tunes off their new album they did a number of terrific divers cover songs such as Ballroom Blitz, Jailhouse Rock, I Feel Nice, Respect, Rock n Roll, Purple Haze and Voodoo Chile. Hopefully since they are not far away in the Okanagan Valley this is another band on this list we will see soon again this summer downtown.