Blackwood Kings from Victoria are playing The Last Drop tonight. (Photo via Facebook)

Live music tonight at The Last Drop

Andy Siegel

Special to the Review

It may be a Monday when there’s not usually live music downtown but what better way to start off the week than seeing three live acts for free at the Last Drop?

Taylor Curtis Meeks a solo performer is the “King of Looping” who starts the night off first, then next up is Mystery Lover, followed by Blackwood Kings.

There’s no cover charge and the weather is warm now so no excuse to sit inside and waste time on social media check out live music in Revy!

Blackwood Kings– Reggae/dub/rock

Now five years into their lifespan, Blackwood Kings has proven to be one of the more unique bands to pop up in the Victoria scene.

In spirit and ethos, they’re a punk band, but while contemporaries may lean towards buzz-saw-distorted guitars and shouted vocals, Blackwood Kings favour the reverb-laden upstrokes of ska and dub, producing a politically and emotionally charged brand of reggae fusion that is uniquely their own.

And while the foundation of Blackwood Kings sound is comprised of the aforementioned Jamaican genres, no musical idea is off limits, with songs frequently travelling into disparate realms such as math rock, fusion, and jungle.

Blackwood Kings released their second EP in the fourth quarter of 2015.

While short in length, the four-track release showcases the diversity of the group’s sound. Lead single Into The Blue features frantic jungle drumming and skankin’ guitars doused in reverb and delay.

Paralysis takes the listener on a journey through angular stops and psychedelic bass-heavy dub, while Idle Nature sees the band explore their ska roots with bouncing upstrokes.

“Upholding lies that blind us from the dirty minds that bind us/ Contending ideologies contain and then divide us” pines frontman Chris Zielonka on Break Away, an earth-shaking dub track that morphs into a Latin-tinged sax-and-trombone conversation.

Blackwood Kings’ varied and malleable style has allowed them to share the stage with notable acts such as Authority Zero, J-Boog, The Slackers, The Mad Caddies, The Skints, Gondwana, and Third World. The group has appeared at festivals such as Rifflandia, Victoria Ska & Reggae Fest and Fernfest, while also lending their performances to social and political events such as the University of Victoria “Earth Fest” with speakers such as the Green Party’s Elizabeth May, and a fundraiser for building a hospital in Sierra Leone alongside acclaimed reggae/highlife group Sierra Leone’s Refugee All-Stars.

Mystery Lover-Indie eno punk

Mystery Lover is an indie/emo band formed in 2017 in Victoria. After a year and a half of existence, which included an appearance on the Capital Ballroom stage at Rifflandia 2018, a B.C. summer tour and close to 30 shows, they are set to release their debut LP The Death Of Young Love, May 4, 2019.

Recorded at Fat Dad Studios with producer Alex Bodman, and mastered by Ryan Schwabe, the album is a both passionate and meditative, profoundly searching testament to the need for meaning and catharsis in the wake of what was a profound loss of romantic, personal and spiritual innocence.

Trying to fully feel through and make sense of the deep well of meaning and emotion that rushed into the void after the end of a deeply intertwined five year relationship, to try to fully understand and put to rest an old way of loving for good, and to process all that through the vessel of song, was the project at hand for songwriter Jonathan Amor.

Mystery Lover’s sound (given the invented genre designation of Mystic Emo) calls on a diverse array of influences such as The Hotelier, Death Cab for Cutie, Bon Iver, Modest Mouse, Mount Eerie, American Football, Japandroids, and Leonard Cohen and is informed by sonic and poetic explorations of Eros/romance, archetypal symbolism and myth, their local urban and natural spaces and an oceanside view of churning emotional waters.

Taylor Curtis-solo looping

Solo looping artist from Vancouver will open the show.



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