January 20, 2011

ColinResponse, the Close Encounters, and New Stems at Tiger Bar on Jan 14th Friday

A gig with 5 lineups a night might seem like it would be a boring or even an overwhelming event. However, last Fridays' show at the Tiger Bar was a very well-organized showcase of artists from a wide range of genres, enough to entertain anyone.

When I arrived, an acoustic solo artist, ColinResponse was on stage, giving my night a good start. Despite the chatty crowd, he managed to pull together some lovely tunes. Once he began playing his first song, the audience began to take notice, quieting down to listen as his vocals were killer. A cover Maroon 5's Sunday Morning, finally drew undivided attention from the audience. His original songs were well-written and provoked emotions: I just wished others were with me to share in the experience. He sang as if he was talking to the audience and telling a story. The last song, Only Hope, was covered beautifully and it was unfortunate that the audience didn't pay more attention to his performance as it was a great one. Maybe they were there for a different kind of music, understandable due to the variety present in the evening's lineup. Personally, I would love to see ColinResponse perform again. I highly recommend his music and believe an atmosphere involving red wine, and great company would be the perfect setting to experience this artist.

Following the ever-so sweet ColinResponse's performance, a young pop-funk group, the Close Encounters turned the knob clockwise and rocked the stage. Their performance  was just so powerful and fun to watch. They completely changed the vibe of the bar from something romantic and mellow to energetic and raunchy. The main vocalist, who also made an appearance during  ColinResponse's performance,  has a crazy amount of talent. She seemed a sweet little girl, however, opening up her voice told us a different, powerful and charismatic story.

At this point I decided to stay for one more band, which, it turns out, was a great decision. The psychedelic/folk rock band, New Stems was on next. As they got rolling, their rhythm became so cohesive and infectious. They provided jazzy grooves that had everyone dancing. A number of people were there to see the band, and the crowd was audibly excited. I loved how it was an instrumental song, Jack's Wax, that gave me a different perspective on the band, making me pay full attention to their performance. I  grabbed their CD, so I am excited to enjoy  their music at home. (Don't forget to check out a CD review coming up shortly!)

It was a fun Friday night, and I enjoyed the sounds of many of Toronto's up and coming talented musicians.  Hopefully we'll hear more from these artists in the near future.

(Photo Credit: Aaron Savatti January 2011. Click here to contact Aaron for any photo inquiries.) 

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